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North Wales Expressway
From:Holyhead (SH247821)
To:Chester (SJ430686)
Via:Bangor, Conwy
Length:88 miles (141.6 km)
Meets: A5154, A5, A487, A5, A470, A547, A548, A525, A5119, A494, A550, A483, A41, A51, A56, M53
Former Number(s):A5
Now part of:A547, A5026, B5125, A5104, A483
Primary Destinations
Bangor • Chester • Conwy • Holyhead • Queensferry
Highway Authorities

Highways Agency • NMWTRA

Traditional Counties

Anglesey • Caernarfonshire • Cheshire • Denbighshire • Flintshire

Route outline (key)
A55 Holyhead – Chester
Junction List
Junc Eastbound Westbound
Start of Road Docks, Station and Car Park
- A5 A5
- A5154 A5154
1 B4545 B4545
2 A5153 (A5) A5153 (A5)
3 A5, A5025, Services A5, A5025, Services
4 A5 A5
5 A5, A4080 A5, A4080
6 A5, A5114 A5, A5114
7 A5152 A5152
7A A5
8 A5025 A5025
8A A5
9 A487 A487
10 A4087 A4087
11 A5, A4244 A5, A4244
12 Tal-y-bont Tal-y-bont
13 Abergwyngregyn Abergwyngregyn
14 Llanfairfechan Llanfairfechan
15 Llanfairfechan Llanfairfechan
15A Penmaenmawr
16 Penmaenmawr Penmaenmawr
16A Dwygyfylchi
17 A547 A547
18 A546 A546
19 A470, A547 A470, A547
20 A547, B5113, B5115 A547, B5113, B5115
21 B5113 B5113
22 (A547) (A547)
23 A547, Services A547, Services
23A A548
24 A547 A547
24A St George Llan San Siôr
Services Services
25 Bodelwyddan Bodelwyddan
26 St Asaph Business Park St Asaph Business Park
27 A525 A525
27A A525
28 B5429 (B5429)
29 Rhuallt Rhuallt
30 - Tremeirchion
31 A5026, A5151, B5122 A5026, A5151, B5122
32 A5026, B5123 A5026
32A B5123
33 A5119 A5119
33A Northop Hall B5126
Services Services
33B A494
34 A494 A494
35 A550 A550
36 A5104 -
37 - (A5104)
38 A483 A483
39 A41 A41
40 A51 A51
M53 J12 M53, A56 Start of road



Part of the A55 near Colwyn Bay
Main Article: A55/Route

The A55 is the main road in North Wales. It is a very high quality road, much of it rebuilt in the 1990s, which today forms the main road linking Chester to Holyhead. Apart from the Britannia Bridge, which remains S2, and a short bit of S2 in Holyhead, it is wholly D2. Some sections of the A55 are even a secret motorway.


The road deck of the Britannia Bridge in 1982. This was numbered A5
Main Article: A55/History

The A55 being the main road between the ferry port of Holyhead (i.e Dublin) and England, it was always going to gain upgrades. Originally built by Thomas Telford, over the years it has had various upgrades on its route.

Notable locations and improvements

Penmaenbach Tunnels

The eastern portal of the eastbound tunnel
Main Article: Penmaenbach Tunnels

The Penmaenbach Tunnels are a pair of tunnels found at Penmaenbach. The eastbound tunnel is the original one from 1932 while the newer one was built in the 1980s. The eastbound tunnel replaced a coastal road built by Thomas Telford.

Pen-y-Clip Tunnels

This is where the two carriageways split/rejoin at the western portal of the 1990s tunnel
Main Article: Pen-y-Clip Tunnels

The Pen-y-Clip Tunnels have much the same story as the Penmaenbach Tunnels though its westbound tunnel was built a decade later. Unlike the Penmaenbach Tunnels, though, the pre-tunnel route has been reinstated for pedestrian use.

Britannia Bridge

The Britannia Bridge in Winter.
Main Article: Britannia Bridge

The Britannia Bridge was originally built in the 1840s as a rail bridge for the LNWR for its line to Holyhead. It has a less favourable crossing point than the Menai Bridge to the east. The original version of the bridge was a tubular bridge and was part of the route for Irish mail as part of the Union with Ireland. In 1970, the bridge was burnt down and a new one was built using the original pillars. A road deck was built as part of the A5. It gained the A55 number in 1999.

Opening dates

Month Year Section Notes
1999 Anglesey New build D2. Replaces the A5 as the trunk road.
1976 Chester Bypass D2 bypass.
1971 Britannia Bridge Rebuild of railway bridge.
1935 Pen-y-clip Tunnel New-build tunnel
1932 Penmaenbach Tunnel New-build tunnel



Roads UK


JunctionsA55 J1 • A55 J15A • A55 J2 • A55 J20 • A55 J21 • A55 J23A • A55 J26 • A55 J27A • A55 J28 • A55 J3 • A55 J30 • A55 J32A • A55 J33A • A55 J33B • A55 J36 • A55 J37 • A55 J39 • A55 J4 • A55 J5 • A55 J6 • A55 J7 • A55 J7A • Abergwyngregyn Interchange • Ael y Bowl Interchange • Bodelwyddan Interchange • Boughton Heath Roundabout • Broughton Heath Junction • Broughton Roundabout (Flintshire) • Caernarfon Road Interchange • Carreg Bran Interchange • Conwy Morfa Interchange • Crossways Interchange • Dolphin Junction • Dwygyfylchi Junction • Ewloe Interchange • Faenol Interchange • Glan Conwy Interchange • Hawarden Interchange • Hoole Island Junction • Llanddulas Interchange • Llandudno Junction Interchange • Llanfairfechan Roundabout • Llys y Gwynt Interchange • Madryn Interchange • McDonald's Roundabout, Holyhead • Northop Interchange • Old Colwyn Interchange • Pant-y-Dulath Interchange • Puffin Roundabout • St Georges Interchange (Denbighshire) • Tal y Bont Interchange • Talardy Junction • Treborth Interchange • Vicars Cross • Wrexham Road Interchange
ServicesBangor services
CrossingsBritannia Bridge • Chester Bypass Bridge • Conwy Tunnel • Holyhead - Dublin ferry • Holyhead - Dun Laoghaire ferry • Pen-y-Clip Tunnels • Penmaenbach Tunnels • St Asaph Bypass Bridge
RoadsE22 • T19 (Britain)
MiscellaneousA55/Named Junctions
Related Pictures
View gallery (150)
A 55 Trunk route at Broughton - Geograph - 47020.jpgA55 - Coppermine - 4618.JPGA55 Westbound - Coppermine - 4625.JPGThe B5429 as it goes under the A55 - Geograph - 29548.jpgThe railway line on the Britannia Bridge - Geograph - 170900.jpg
Other nearby roads
ChesterA41 • A41/Chester - Birkenhead • A41/Whitchurch - Chester • A483 • A5032 • A51 • A5104 • A5115 • A5116 • A5268 • A529 (Chester - Hinstock) • A54 • A540 • A548 • A5480 • A56 • B5104 • B5129 • B5130 • B5131 • E22 • M53 • M56 • T14 (Britain) • T18 (Britain) • T19 (Britain)
AbergeleA547 • A548 • B5106 • B5443 • T19 (Britain)
ConwyA5110 • A544 (Betws-y-Coed - Llandudno) • A546 • A547 • B4407 (Ffestiniog - Conwy) • B5106 • E22 • T19 (Britain) • T85 (Britain)
BangorA4087 • A4244 • A487 • A499 • A5 • A5/Bangor - Holyhead • A5/Betws-y-Coed - Bangor • A5122 • B4547 • B5107 • E22 • E34 (Old System) • EuroVelo 2 • Holyhead Road • NCN8 • T11 (Britain) • T19 (Britain) • T81 (Britain)
HolyheadA5 • A5/Bangor - Holyhead • A5153 • A5154 • B4545 • E22 • E34 (Old System) • EuroVelo 2 • Holyhead Road • NCN8 • T11 (Britain)
The First 99

Motorways and Defunct Itineraries:
A1(M) (Herts·Hunts·Doncaster·Yorks·Durham·NewcastleA2(M): (London·MedwayA3(M)·A4(M)·A5(M)·A6(M): (West·EastA8(M)
A14(M)·A14·A18(M)·A20(M)·A36(M)·A38(M)·A40(M): (London·BucksA41(M)·A42·A46(M)

A48(M): (Cardiff·Port Talbot·Morriston)·A57(M)·A58(M)·A61(M)·A64(M)·A66(M)·A74(M)·A88·A92(M)·A99