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From:Biddenden (TQ849382)
To:Shepway (TQ767539)
Length:12.3 miles (19.8 km)
Meets: A262, B2163, A229
Former Number(s):B2078
Highway Authorities


Traditional Counties


Route outline (key)
A274 Biddenden - Shepway
This article is about the current A274, which runs from Benenden near Ashford to Shepway near Maidstone.
For the original, which ran from Lewes to Pevensey near Eastbourne and is now part of the A27, see A274 (Lewes - Pevensey)


The A274 is a rural A-road in mid-Kent.

The route begins in one of Kent's most pleasant villages. Having dispensed with the A262, our road heads north and after several twists straightens out in fine style. We pass an airfield to our right and the long straight ends to bridge the South Eastern Main Line and bend left into the High Street of Headcorn.

The surface of the road is an unusual 'brick' style - presumably some kind of traffic calming measure. Having passed an extremely well-endowed village shop-wise, we bear sharp-right by the church and head out along another prolonged straight; first a fifty limit and finally national speed limit.

The ridge of greensand hills looms ominously ahead and after another five miles of genuine 60mph road, we begin to climb them. It is at the village of Sutton Valence that the road narrows and steepens dramatically, with a sharp and narrow bend forcing you to lose momentum half-way up. Soon the road flattens out and we cross the B2163. Suburbia is coming! First the industrial estate, then the housing estates. Eventually we reach the A229 for a four-lane descent into central Maidstone.

Original Author(s): Adam Colton


The current A274 was originally numbered B2078. It was upgraded to Class I status in the 1950s.

Related Pictures
View gallery (1)
The White Horse on the A274 through Headcorn - Geograph - 1218497.jpg
Other nearby roads
MaidstoneA20 • A20(M) • A2011 (Maidstone) • A2020 • A229 • A249 • A26 • B2010 • B2011 (Maidstone) • B2013 • B2078 • B2246 • E15 • E2 (Old System) • E5 (Old System) • M20 • T4 (Britain)
A200 – A299


Defunct Itineraries: A239·A268·A270·A273·A274·A277·A278·A280·A282·A292·A295