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Network changes - 1970s

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A list of the changes to the road network in Great Britain from 1970 - 1979. Includes road openings and renumberings.

Road Openings

Year Number on opening Location County Notes
1970 M1 Fiveways Interchange Middlesex 0.5 mile southern extension of J2 and Fiveways Flyover opened 7 July 1970. Both flyover carriageways were used for Northbound flows onto M1 and A1 Watford Way pending the opening of M1 to J1. The NE carriageway changed to a Southbound flow from the M1 to A1 following an Order of 16 December 1978.
1970 M5 Ray Hall - Quinton Staffordshire • Worcestershire The extension from J3 to M6 was opened on 15 May 1970 by Fred Mulley, Minister of Transport. Also opened was the M6 section to J9 Bescot to complete the north - south section of the Midland Links motorway. It included 15 bridges, a canal aquaduct, 1.6 mile of viaduct and a 4.2 mile elevated section. Composite steel and reinforced concrete was used for the viaducts and elevated section for its relative simplicity of construction and flexibility of application to the great range of conditions. The cost of the full 11.3 mile scheme from Quinton to Bescot was £18.5 million. The south eastern link at Ray Hall interchange opened on 20 July 1970 allowing M6 J7 to M5 traffic flows.
1970 M5 Strensham Interchange- Piffs Elm Interchange Gloucestershire • Worcestershire The 8.3 mile motorway from J8 to J10 was opened on 16 June 1970. The opening had been scheduled in May but was delayed due to defects in the road surface. The official opening included a champagne party on a bridge over the motorway during which Nicholas Ridley, Conservative candidate for Cirencester and Tewkesbury, made a speech. The Mayor of Tewkesbury was to have driven a hired vintage car as the first vehicle on the motorway. The Liberal candidate for Cirencester and Tewkesbury, Denys Robinson, on learning about the ceremony, was misdirected by the Town Clerk's Office to another part of the motorway. He drove quickly to the ceremony and remonstrated with the Town Clerk. The Liberal candidate for Cheltenham, Dudley Aldridge, had meanwhile gone to one end of the section and was let through by the police. Those at the official ceremony looked on with a mixture of surprise and horror as Mr Aldridge's cars streaked under the bridge and unofficially opened the motorway!
1970 M6 Great Barr - Ray Hall Staffordshire The 2 mile section from J7 to J8 (to connect to the M5 to M6 north section) was opened on 20 July 1970. Also opened was the M5 south eastern link at Ray Hall Interchange allowing M6 J7 to M5 traffic flows.
1970 M6 Ray Hall - Wednesbury (Bescot) Staffordshire The 1.5 mile section from J8 to J9 was opened on 15 May 1970 by Fred Mulley, Minister of Transport. The M5 section from Ray Hall to J3 Quinton was also opened.
1970 M6 Carnforth Interchange - Thrimby Lancashire • Westmorland The 34 mile section from J35 to the southern end of extended Penrith Bypass at Thrimby was fully opened on 23 October 1970 by John Peyton, Minister of Transport. The 7.7 mile southbound carriageway of the J35 to J36 Crooklands Interchange, Farleton, section had opened earlier on 13 August 1970. Contractors were: Carnforth to Killington - W & C French (Construction) Ltd.; Killington to Tebay - John Laing Construction Ltd.; Tebay to Thrimby - Christiani-Shand. Cost £34.5 million.
1970 M6 Carlisle Bypass Cumberland The 6.8 miles from J42 Golden Fleece, Carleton to J44 Kingstown was opened on 15 December 1970.
1970 M8 Newbridge Roundabout to Dechmont Midlothian • West Lothian The 6.5 mile motorway from the then J2 A8 M9 roundabout just east of Newbridge to 0.7 miles west of J3 at Dechmont to connect into the existing M8 westward section was opened on 30 November 1970. The 0.6 mile connection to the Dechmont temporary junction at the A8 A899 roundabout just north of J3 (which opened on 23 September 1969) was closed then removed. The motorway had dual 24 foot carriageways and hard shoulders. Cost was £4.7 million.
1970 M8 Kingston Bridge, Glasgow Lanarkshire Bridge opened by HM The Queen Mother on 26 June. J19 to J20
1970 M9 Newbridge Roundabout to Muriehall Midlothian • West Lothian The 2.3 mile motorway from the A8 M8 roundabout just east of Newbridge to a temporary junction with the then A9 (later renumbered B9080) 1 mile west of J1 (later J1a) Kirkliston Spur was opened on 25 November 1970. The motorway had dual 36 foot carriageways and hard shoulders. Cost was £3 million, including the Kirkliston Spur.
1970 M9 Spur Kirkliston Spur West Lothian The 1 mile motorway bypass of Kirkliston from the then M9 J1 (later renumbered 1a) to a roundabout junction with B800 0.6 miles north of Kirkliston was opened on 25 November 1970. Later renumbered M90. The B800 was renumbered A8000 and provided a connection to the Forth Road Bridge.
1970 M32 Hambrook/Frenchay - Eastville Gloucestershire Stapleton Bypass. 2.7 miles from J1 to J2 opened on 22 July 1970 per The Gazette. The Hambrook Spur, north of J1 to M4 (opened in 1966), was renumbered M32.
1970 M61
Worsley Braided Interchange to Horwich Link Lancashire The 6.5 miles from the then M62 (later M60) J14 to M61 J6 was opened on 17 December 1970 per the Gazette. It included the A666(M) Kiersley Spur to Kearsley Interchange.
1970 M62 Chain Bar, Cleckheaton - Gildersome Street Yorkshire 4 miles from J26 to J27 opened on 10 October 1970 per The Gazette.
1970 M62 Worsley - Whitefield Lancashire 6 miles from J13 to J17 was opened on 14 October 1970, without ceremony. It included the A580 (westbound) to M62 links of Worsley Braided Interchange. Lighting from Worsley Court House Junction to Clifton was by overhead lanterns slung from overhead cables running above the central reservation.. Cost £12 million. The Gazette notice only included the section north-east of A580 although the Liverpool Echo report stated it was from J13.
1970 M62 Rockingstone Moss (Moss Moor) - Outlane, Huddersfield Yorkshire 7 miles from J22 to J23 was opened on 10 December 1970 per The Gazette. It included the section atop the dam of Scammonden Water reservoir which had been constructed at the same time.
1970 M62 Gildersome Street - M1 Lofthouse Interchange Yorkshire 5.5 miles from J27 to J29 opened on 15 December 1970 per The Gazette.
1970 A1(M) Birtley Bypass Durham The 1.8 mile section from the current J63 to J65 opened on 16 January 1970 per Newcastle Evening Chronicle. The Gazette stated a later opening date of 1 June 1970. It was an upgrade of the existing A1 dual carriageway.
1970 A194(M) Birtley - A184 Durham Entire Motorway
1970 A40(M) East Acton to Paddington Middlesex Westway downgraded to A40 in 1998
1970 A1 Blagdon Bends Bypass Northumberland The 2.5 mile dual carriageway between Stannington Bridge and Seaton Burn was opened on 24 March 1970 by Viscount Ridley, Chairman of Northumberland County Council. Cost £700,000.
1970 A1 Alnwick Bypass Northumberland Stage 1. The 3 mile single carriageway was opened on 16 October 1970 by the Duke of Northumberland. It had a 24 foot carriageway with 12 foot verges to allow for future dualling. Work started on 4 March 1968. Contractor was A.M. Carmichael Ltd, Edinburgh and cost £1.25 million.
1970 A1 Morpeth Bypass Northumberland The 4 mile dual carriageway was opened on 11 November 1970 by Viscount Ridley, Chairman of Northumberland County Council. Cost £2.5 million.
1970 A108 Tyne Tunnel Northern Approach Road Northumberland Stage 2. The 5.75 mile road between Seaton Burn and Holystone Interchange was opened on 20 October 1970 by Dr. William Reid, acting Chairman of the Northern Economic Council. It had taken 28 months to construct, 4 months over schedule due to allowing mining subsidence to settle. Cost £3 million. It was dual carriageway except for 2 miles at the Seaton Burn end. There were 11 bridges on route. It completed the Eastern bypass of Newcastle. Renumbered to A1 between 1977 and 1990, then A19.
1970 A120 Bishop's Stortford Link Road Hertfordshire Causeway Link Road was opened on 6 June 1970 by Mrs L.R. Peterson, Chairman of Hertfordshire County Council. A relief road for the town centre. Later renumbered A1250.
1970 A327 Arborfield Garrison Bypass Berkshire Everley Road. Reported as recently completed in April 1970. Work on the connections to the existing roads was taking place in November 1969. It may have opened in late 1969.
1970 A444 Bedworth Bypass Warwickshire The £2.2million dual carriageway opened on 23 February 1970.
1970 A449 Raglan Interchange to Usk Interchange Monmouthshire The 5 mile dual carriagway was opened on 16 October 1970 by Peter Thomas, Secretary of State for Wales.
1970 A451 Kidderminster Inner Ring Road Worcestershire Stage 2 – Worcester Cross Ringway between Coventry Street and Comberton Hill. Opened on 15 June 1970. It ran through one of the most densely populated areas of the town centre and involved the demolition of tightly packed 19th Century cottages. Of the £814,000 forecast cost, £400,000 was for land purchase and compensation. The local playhouse was demolished and Kidderminster amateur theatre group won their compensation claim case at the Lands Tribunal for the present day cost of building a new theatre of £167,000.
1970 A461 Wednesbury Northern Inner Ring Road Staffordshire Bypass of Upper High Street. The 0.2 mile dual carriageway from the roundabout at High Bullen to Walsall Street was opened on 21 September 1970 by Alderman Ray Wimbury, Mayor of West Bromwich. Cost £218,000.
1970 A4097 Marston Bypass Warwickshire The 1.25 mile single carriageway road was to be opened on 16 December 1970 by Major T.W. Kimpton, Chairman of the Roads Committee of Warwickshire County Council. It was built to provide better access to the Kingsbury Oil Terminal (which had opened in Spring 1969) from the Birmingham direction and relieve the bottleneck at the single lane Hemlingford Bridge. It was largely on an embankment with flood culverts across the Tame valley. Contractor was Sheldon Contracting Co. Ltd. of Solihull, cost £325,000. At the eastern end it joined the unclassified Kingsbury bypass recently built.
1970 A4177 Haseley Knob Bypass Warwickshire The 1 mile bypass cost £120,000. It was part of a 2 year scheme to improve the Five Ways to Balsall Common road and effectively create a western bypass for Kenilworth. That scheme was complete in February 1971.
1970 A50 Markfield bypass Leicestershire From Field Head to J22 M1
1970 A59 Clitheroe and Whalley Bypass Lancashire Also bypassed Chatburn and Billington. 8 mile single carriageway road. Opened in 1970 per BFI film archive. Cost £3.4 million.
1970 A506 Skelmersdale Regional Road Lancashire Phase 2 - Pimbo Interchange to M6 J26 Orrell Interchange, a bypass for Up Holland. 1.65 mile dual carriageway opened on 1 October 1970 by Lord Rhodes, Lord Lieutenant of Lancashire, estimated cost £2.45 million. Contractor was Dowsett Engineering Construction Ltd. It was upgraded to M58 in 1977.
1970 A617 Chesterfield - M1 Link Road Derbyshire Stage 1: 2.5 miles from the J29 link at Heath to Winsick, the Heath and Temple Normanton Bypass, was opened between the April 1970 and December 1970 OS Quarter inch maps. Dual 24 foot carriageways with 15 foot central reservation and 12.5 foot verges. Forecast cost was £1.08 million.
1970 A74 Mossband Viaduct - Guards Mill Cumberland Dualling, later replaced by M6 in 2008
1970 A85 Glendoick - North Inchmichael Perthshire Dualling, later renumbered to A90 in 1994
1970 A890 Strome Ferry Bypass Ross-shire The 7.5 mile single track road from Strathcarron to South Strome was opened on 5 October 1970 by Gordon Campbell, Scottish Secretary. It subsumed the former B856 between Strathcarron Station and Strathcarron Junction. It included 1 in 7 gradients, crumbling rockfaces enclosed in steel mesh and an avalanche shelter, the first on a British Road. There had been 2 landslides at that location during construction. It replaced the queues at the ferry, which did not run on Sundays giving the only option of a 143 mile detour via Inverness. Consulting Engineers were Babtie, Shaw and Morton of Glasgow. It was the last big contract for Duncan Logan Construction Ltd. of Muir of Ord who went into liquidation. Cost £862,000.
1970 A9 Stirling Stirlingshire Stirling Inner Bypass
1970 A9 Helmsdale Caithness Helmsdale Bridge
1970 C22 Sheildaig - Kenmore Ross-shire Part of Applecross northern coastal route; now Highland C1087. Opened 11 May 1970; rest of road to Applecross Bay took until 1975.
1970 - Skelmersdale Glenburn Road Lancashire 1.6 mile dual carriageway connecting the Stanley Industrial Area to the A506 Regional Road (now M58) was opened on 1 October 1970 by Lord Rhodes, Lord Lieutenant of Lancashire. Contractor was Buckton Contractors Ltd., estimated cost £1.48 million. The section south of Halfmile Island was later renumbered A5068.
1970 - Tonbridge Eastern Bypass Kent Stage 1 - Hadlow Road to Vale Rise. Opened 2 July 1970 by Councillor John Brooker. It included Cannon Bridge over River Medway. Cost £470,000. Later renumbered A26.
1971 M20 Wrotham Heath - Maidstone Kent The 6.5 mile Ditton Bypass from Wrotham Heath (later J2a of M26) to J5 Aylesford Interchange was opened on 7 December 1971. It had dual 36 feet 3 lane carriageways with a 13 foot central reservation and hard shoulders. Contractor was Costain Civil Engineering Ltd.. The section between Wrotham Heath and J3 Addington became part of M26 in 1980.
1971 M3 Bagshot/ Lightwater - Popham Surrey • Hampshire The first section of M3 opened in 2 stages. The 9 miles from J6 Black Dam (Basingstoke East) to J8 Popham on 28 May 1971 and the 18.5 miles from J3 Bagshot/ Lightwater to J6 Black Dam (Basingstoke East) on 18 June 1971. It was 4 months behind schedule following a steel shortage, weather hold-ups and cracks being found in concrete bridge beams.
1971 M4 Stanton St Quintin - Tormarton Wiltshire • Gloucestershire The 10.75 mile eastwards extension from J17 to J18 was opened on 15 June 1971.
1971 M4 Badbury - Stanton St Quintin Wiltshire The 5 mile section from J15 Badbury to J16 Spittleborough (then known as Lydiard Tregoze) was opened on 19 October 1971 and the 12.5 miles from J16 to J17 Stanton St Quintin was opened on 9 November 1971 per The Gazette.
1971 M4 Holyport, Maidenhead - Badbury Berkshire • Wiltshire The 50.5 mile section from the A330 bridge, just east of J8/9, to J15 was opened on 22 December 1971 by Michael Heseltine, Parliamentary Under-Secretary at the Department of Environment. It completed the M4 from London to Newport and was the longest stretch of motorway to open in one go since the M1/M10/M45 in 1959. The then M4 had taken 12 years to build and had cost £140 million. The interchange at J8/9 Holyport opened along with the A308(M) spur and Bray Interchange was closed. The official Jaguar had to be pushed away by police at the opening ceremony since it would not start! A number of windscreens were shattered following the opening due to stones and mud left on the road.
1971 M5 Piffs Elm Interchange - Stroudwater Interchange Gloucestershire The 14.7 mile motorway from J10 to J13 was opened on 6 April 1971. Cost £15 million.
1971 M5 Stroudwater Interchange - Almondsbury Roundabout Gloucestershire The 18.9 mile motorway from J13 to J16 was opened on 3 December 1971 by Michael Heseltine, Under-Secretary of State at Department of Environment. The ceremony was at Michaelwood Service Area. Cost £14 million. It created a 285 mile continuous motorway between Bristol and Carlisle. There were 26 bridges and Almondsbury Interchange, described as the largest interchange in Europe, was finally fully operational.
1971 M6 Coleshill - Castle Bromwich Warwickshire The 5.5 mile section from J4 to J5 opened on 15 February 1971 and was the first section of the M1 to Birmingham motorway. Each right hand lane was closed initially whist the tensioned safety fences were installed. It had dual 36 foot carriageways, 10 foot wide hard shoulders and a central reservation varying between 8 and 15 feet. Cost £4 million.
1971 M6 Ansty - Coleshill Warwickshire The 12 mile section from J2 to J4 opened on 1 July 1971. It was the first motorway with a four lane section, this was to accommodate slow vehicles on the 1 in 30 gradient at Maxstoke. Other "firsts" recorded were having central crash barriers built in, and the new international sign for motorways at its entry points. Cost £9.5 million.
1971 M6 Catthorpe - Ansty Warwickshire • Leicestershire The 12 miles from M1 J19 to J2 opened on 15 November 1971 to connect to the Castle Bromwich section opened earlier in the year. Cost £9 million.
1971 M6 Catterlen - Golden Fleece, Carleton, Carlisle Cumberland The 12.3 miles from J41 to J42 was opened on 1 July 1971 by Graham Page, Minister for Local Government and Development. It linked the southern motorway to the Carlisle bypass, opened in 1970 and completed the Birmingham to Carlisle section, creating a 243 mile motorway from south of Gloucester to Carlisle. Tender cost was £6.943 million.
1971 M9 Craigforth - Keir Roundabout Stirlingshire • Perthshire Stirling Bypass Stage 1 from J10 to J11 was opened on 6 April 1971. The 2.5 mile scheme included a bridge over the River Forth and 0.5 mile of dual carriageway to the north of J11 on the then A9, later renumbered as B8033. Cost was £3.5 million. A 150 year old house at the entrance to Keir Estates was taken down and rebuilt 0.75 miles away since it stood in the motorway's path. The Estate was owned by Colonel William Stirling, former wartime Commando leader.
1971 M40 Beaconsfield Bypass Buckinghamshire A 1 mile eastwards extension from the Temporary Terminus with A40 at Holtspur, west of Beaconsfield (1 mile west of J2) to J2 Beaconsfield Interchange was to be opened on 17 March 1971 by Michael Heseltine, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State at Department of Environment (per Reading Evening Post). No notice of opening has been seen in The Gazette.
1971 M56 Sutton - Hapsford Cheshire The first section of M56 to open was J12 to J14 on 21 February 1971, the Frodsham and Helsby Bypass. The 5 mile section cost £9 million and was more than twice the then National average cost per mile of motorways. Sir Alfred McAlpine and Son Ltd. had the contract to remove 1 million tons of peat on the marshes and replace with solid sandstone. Christiani Shand had the £3.5 million contract to build the Weaver Viaduct, three-quarter mile of elevated motorway and approach embankments over the River Weaver and Weaver Navigation Canal. It was 3,200 feet long, had 33 spans and had 60 feet navigational clearance over the canal and 27 feet over the river.
1971 M56 Preston Brook - Sutton Cheshire The 2.7 miles from J11 to J12 opened on 23 September 1971. It opened with just the western bridge at J11, the second bridge and roundabout being completed within a couple of months.
1971 M62 Whitefield - Rockingstone Moss (Moss Moor) Lancashire • Yorkshire The 13.2 miles from J17 to J22 opened on 3 August 1971 (the westward entry slip road at J22 opened on 6 October 1971 per The Gazette). The Queen visited the motorway on 14 October 1971 for the official inauguration. The 1,221 feet summit at Windy Hill makes it the highest motorway in Great Britain. Wire rope central crash barriers were used in places because normal Armco barriers would have acted as snow traps. Elaborate snow fences and screens were also built to prevent blockages during heavy snow. Contractor was the Sir Lindsay Parkinson Organisation, main contract cost £12.5 million. Special bridges had been built before the M62 construction began at a cost of £7 million.
1971 M66 Simister - Rhodes Lancashire 1.1 mile southwards from M62 J18 Simister Island to a then termination roundabout on A556 at Rhodes. The Gazette notice for the adjacent M62 section and the opening of Simister roundabout was 3 August 1971. It was part of the proposed Manchester Ring Road and was later renumbered M60.
1971 M602 Patricroft - Eccles Lancashire Eccles Bypass from J1 to J2
1971 A308(M) Holyport, Maidenhead - Braywick Berkshire The short spur from M4 J8/9 to the A308 and A330 was opened on 22 December 1971.
1971 A1 Eaton Socon Bypass Bedfordshire • Huntingdonshire The 3.2 mile dual carriageway was opened in 1971 per a later Hansard answer. Contractor was R McGregor and Sons.
1971 A1 Tickencote - South Witham Rutland • Lincolnshire The 8.5 mile dual carriageway was opened to traffic on the 11th August 1971 by the Earl of Gainsborough - the Chairman of the council. It was built by Turriff of Salisbury in two years for Rutland County Council at a cost of £2.25 million.
1971 A1 Allerton Yorkshire Flyover junction
1971 A1 Scotch Corner Yorkshire Scotch Corner Diversion
1971 A1 Seaton Burn and Wide Open Bypass Northumberland The 2.7 mile dual carriageway opened on 22 June 1971. Cost £1.6 million. The experimental surfaces ordered by the Department for Environment were cracking after just 3 years, necessitating £250,000 of repairs.
1971 A11 Wymondham Bypass Extension Norfolk Harts Farm Road. The single carriageway road from Avenue Road to Norwich Road (by Turner Close) opened in August 1971 per a Diss Mercury report (21 August 2008). Later renumbered as B1172. The Norwich Road connection has been severed due to a diversion.
1971 A16 Holton-le-Clay Bypass Lincolnshire Shown on the 1971/72 Philips Road Atlas. Not on December 1970 OS Quarter inch map. 1.1 mile.
1971 A19 Easington and Seaham Bypass Durham The 6 mile dual carriageway was opened in October 1971. The £4.5 million scheme had started in October 1969. In February 1970 the contractor Carmichaels, Edinburgh went into voluntary liquidation and the County Council stepped in to complete the work.
1971 A21 Tonbridge Bypass Kent The 6.5 mile dual carriageway was opened on 12 July 1971 by Edward Heath, Prime Minister. Construction had started in September 1968. Contractor was Willetts Motorways Ltd. and cost £5.5 million. It included a viaduct over the River Medway.
1971 A31 Alton Bypass Hampshire Opened between March 1971 and May 1972 editions of OS Quarter inch map. Dual carriageway. Also bypassed Holybourne and Chawton.
1971 A38 Lee Mill Devon Lee Mill Bypass
1971 A38 Lichfield Eastern Bypass Staffordshire The 4 mile dual carriageway from Streethay to Wall Island was opened on 27 April 1971 by Herbert Bourne, Chairman of Staffordshire Roads and Bridges Committee. Cost £2.75 million. Provision was made to build a flyover from A5 West to A38 North at Wall Island but this was never built.
1971 A4 Theale Bypass Berkshire The 1.6 mile dual carriageway was fully opened on 13 December 1971. Bi-directional operation on a single carriageway had started on 4 August 1971.
1971 A462 Darlaston Bypass Staffordshire The official opening of St. Lawrence Way was held on 23 July 1971 by Sir Harmar Nicholls MP.
1971 A52 Whatton Bypass Nottinghamshire Opened on 12 May 1971. A week later it was found that 2,000 tons of hot rolled asphalt was faulty and sections of the bypass required resurfacing. The bypass was designed to allow future dualling. It included a 50 foot span bridge over River Smyte. Constructed by Nottinghamshire County Council direct labour, cost £190,000.
1971 A591 Kendal Bypass Westmorland The 3.25 mile road was opened on 26 August 1971 by James Cropper, High Sheriff of Westmorland. It had dual 24 foot wide carriageways. Contractor was John Laing Constructions Ltd., cost £1.75 million.
1971 A63 South Cave - Elloughton Yorkshire Elloughton Bypass
1971 A68 Witton-le-Wear Bypass Durham Described by a Council report in the Newcastle Journal of 24 November 1971 as recently completed. 1.25 mile including the four span bridge over River Wear. Estimated cost £800,000.
1971 A77 Ayr Ayrshire Ayr Bypass
1971 A898 Erskine - Kilpatrick Dunbartonshire Opening of Erskine Bridge, 2 July 1971
1971 - Empingham - Edith Weston Rutland The 2 mile road was opened on 11 August 1971 as a diversionary route for roads lost due to the Rutland Water reservoir project. It was built on the line of an existing track.
1972 M1 Stourton - Leeds Yorkshire The Leeds South East Urban Motorway. 2 mile section from the then J43 at Stourton Interchange to J47 at Dewsbury Road opened 15 December 1972. It became J7 to J3 of M621 upon the opening of the M1 to A1(M) extension in 1999.
1972 M4 Morriston and Llansamlet Bypass Glamorgan J44 Lon-las to J46 Llangyfelach. 3.8 miles. Hansard in 1975 stated that the opening was August 1972. Glamorgan Archives have a document listed for the inauguration ceremony 16 September 1972. No notice of opening seen in The Gazette. Number changed from A48(M) to M4 before opening. OS Quarter inch map revised to August 1972 shows it as M4.
1972 M6 Castle Bromwich - Great Barr Staffordshire • Warwickshire The 8 mile connecting link from J5 to J7 was opened on 24 May 1972 by Peter Walker, Secretary of State for the Environment. It included the full opening of J6 Gravelly Hill Interchange, otherwise known as "Spaghetti Junction" and completed the Midland Links Motorways which had cost a total of £110 million. The 3.5 mile elevated section between Castle Bromwich and Gravelly Hill was the longest in Britain. The opening had been delayed for 6 months due to having to fix stiffening plates to the ends of the box girders on the section due to problems encountered elsewhere. No notice of opening has been seen in The Gazette, just a speed limit notice for J6. Mr Walker also opened Perry Barr motorway police headquarters and Hilton Park Services.
1972 M9 Muriehall to Lathallan West Lothian • Stirlingshire The 10 mile motorway from the temporary junction with the then A9 (later renumbered B9080), 1 mile west of J1 (later J1a) Kirkliston Spur, to J4 at Lathallan was opened on 18 December 1972 by George Younger, Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Development. Contractor was Tarmac Construction Ltd., cost £7.5 million. In 1970 planners had to find a 3.7 mile new route around Philipstoun after retired shale miners told them that the ground was so undermined on the announced route that it would not support a motorway. This held up the start of construction.
1972 M18 Thorne Bypass Yorkshire The 2.5 miles from a Temporary Terminus with A1146 Thorne Road (south of J5 North Ings Interchange) to J6 Waterside was opened on 21 June 1972 per The Gazette.
1972 M53 Mid Wirral Motorway Cheshire 10.5 miles from J1 Bidston to J5 Hooton was opened on 1 February 1972, along with the Moreton Spur and A554 Leasowe Road Link, by Lord Leverhulme, Lord Lieutenant of Cheshire. Dual 36 feet carriageways with 13 foot central reservation and 9 foot 6 inch hard shoulders. Moreton Spur had dual 24 foot carriageways. Contractor was a Sir Alfred McAlpine and Son Ltd. / Leonard Fairclough Ltd. consortium, tender cost £11.6 million. The opening of J1 flyover and connections to the Wallasey Docks and new Mersey Tunnel links was delayed until 22 May 1972. Single lane traffic was then allowed on the Bidston viaducts following preliminary £20,000 improvements and strengthening work to the steel box girder bridges. Full opening was expected in August or September 1972.
1972 M56 Wythenshawe - Bowdon Roundabout Cheshire The 7 miles from J3a to J7 and spur to A556 opened on 4 January 1972. It had dual 3 lane carriageways of 36 feet, 10 foot 6 inch hard shoulders and a 13 foot central reservation. There was a short section near the future J3 interchange with the proposed Sharston Bypass which had dual 4 lane carriageways of 48 feet. The Bowdon Spur from J7 had dual 2 lane carriageways of 24 feet. It included 24 bridges, 4 subways, 1 culvert, 2.5 mile of road diversions and the 800 yard Manchester Airport Link road from J5. Contractor was Holland and Hannen and Cubitts {Civil Engineering} Ltd., tender price £6.8 million.
1972 M57 Knowsley Wood - Switch Island, Netherton Lancashire Liverpool Outer Ring Road Phase 1 from J5 A580 East Lancs Road to J7 was opened on 5 April 1972 by William Harris, Director General Highways, Department of Environment. The 3.5 mile dual 3 lane motorway cost £3.8 million.
1972 M606 Bradford - Euroway Yorkshire From J2 to J3
1972 M73 Maryville - Mollinsburn Lanarkshire From its start on the M74 to a fork junction with the then A80 near the present J3. Extended somewhat NE in 2011 as part of the M80 completion project.
1972 A18(M) Thorne Bypass Yorkshire The 1 mile Tudworth Hall Link from M18 J5 North Ings Interchange to Tudworth Roundabout (later M180 J1) was opened on 21 June 1972 per The Gazette. Later renumbered M180. A short section of westbound carriageway from Tudworth Roundabout was abandoned following the M180 re-alignment in 1978.
1972 A38(M) Aston, Birmingham Warwickshire Aston Expressway
1972 A627(M) Oldham to Rochdale Lancashire The complete 3.5 mile motorway from J1 Chadderton Roundabout, Oldham to J4 Sandbrook Park Crossroads, Rochdale opened on 7 January 1972. It included the 0.6 mile Slattocks Link Road motorway spur from J2 Slattocks Interchange to A664 Rochdale Road at Slattocks. Cost £6.8 million.
1972 A11 Cringleford Norfolk Cringleford Bypass
1972 A19 Thirsk Yorkshire Thirsk Bypass
1972 A108 Sunderland Bypass Durham 3 sections. February 1972 – 3.5 miles from Seaton Interchange to A690 Herrington Interchange. 20 March 1972 – 2.25 miles from Hylton Grange Interchange to Testos Roundabout. 8 May 1972 – 2 miles from A690 Herrington Interchange to A183 Chester Road Interchange. Generally two lane 24 foot wide dual carriageways with 15 foot central reservation and 12 foot verges. The final middle section was delayed by national safety concerns re the steel box girder Hylton Viaduct under construction, which did not open until 30 September 1974. Later renumbered A19.
1972 A1073 Crowland Bypass Lincolnshire The 1.4 mile road from Peterborough Road to Postland Road opened on 8 or 15 September 1972. Forecast cost was £196,000. Later became unclassified after opening of the 2nd bypass in 2010.
1972 A1231 Washington – Sunderland Durham Washington Cross Route - stage 1: Ferryboat Lane (to connect to Hylton Grange Interchange on the, then incomplete, Sunderland Bypass) to the northern end of Queen Alexandra Bridge at Low Southwick. The 2.25 mile single carriageway was to be opened on 18 December 1972. Cost £605,000. Both the westwards extension to Washington and Hylton Viaduct on the southbound Sunderland Bypass were still to be completed. The section east of the later Northern Spire Bridge was later renumbered A1290
1972 A2 Dartford Kent Second Dartford Bypass opens. Old road renumbered A2018, B2174, A225 & A296
1972 A38 Plympton Bypass Devon 4 mile dual carriageway. Some newspaper reports hint at opening in 1971 although the Cornish Guardian on 30 December 1971 reported that it was nearing completion. The Government agreed a temporary closure for its use in a Tour de France stage on Saturday 29 June 1974 citing the benefits including strengthening links between the South-West of England and Brittany.
1972 A38 Haldon Hill Diversion Devon The 2.25 mile dual carriageway from Haldon Hill Racecourse to the Kennford bypass was fully opened in April 1972. One carriageway for bi-directional running had been opened in early March 1972 and the old road temporarily closed to allow completion work. Carriageways were 24 foot wide and the original twisting route was bypassed. It included the interchange with A380 at the bottom of Telegraph Hill. Cost £1.5 million.
1972 A404 Marlow Bypass Buckinghamshire • Berkshire The 6 mile dual carriageway from M40 J4 Handy Cross to Burchetts Green Roundabout was opened on 20 December 1972 by David Smith and Major John Young, Lord Lieutenants of Berkshire and Buckinghamshire. The section south of Bisham Roundabout was online dualling. It included the new Longridge Bridge over River Thames. Contractor was Fitzpatrick and Sons Ltd., cost £4.25 million.
1972 A420 Fyfield Bypass Berkshire Completed in 1971-72 per Berkshire County Surveyors' Department reports. Contractor was Ameys Asphalt Ltd., tender cost £193.307, total forecast cost £235,588.
1972 A449 Usk Interchange to M4 J24 Coldra, Newport Monmouthshire Usk Bypass. 8 mile concrete surfaced dual carriageway. Reported on 6 December 1972 that it had opened last week. This completed the dual carriageway from Raglan and the M50 at Ross-on-Wye to Newport.
1972 A50 Sudbury Bypass Derbyshire The dual carriageway opened in June 1972. 1.9 mile scheme. West of Ashbourne Interchange to Flackers Lane was an online upgrade. This section is now unclassified. Traffic surveys by the school children showed that traffic through the village was reduced from an average of 861 vehicles per hour to 15. Contractor was Henry Boot Construction Ltd., cost £400,000. Multiplex with A515.
1972 A614 Clifton Bridge (Nottingham) Nottinghamshire The Eastern span was opened to create a dual carriageway. The single carriageway sections of the Nottingham Outer Ring Road between the current A6005 and A606 had also been dualled by 1971. Currently part of A52
1972 A671 Whalley Eastern Bypass Lancashire The 1.1 mile single carriageway was opened by James Wallis, Regional Transport Controller for Department of Environment. Cost 0.5 million.
1972 A82 Alexandria Dunbartonshire Alexandria Bypass Southern Section
1972 A899 Livingston Road Midlothian Stage 3 - Almond Road to A71 south-west of Mid Calder opened on 28 February 1972. It included a 1000 foot long and 60 feet high viaduct over the River Almond. The D2 road cost £510,000. This completed the Livingston "Spine road" between A8 and A71.
1972 - Daventry Eastern Bypass Northamptonshire South Way was officially opened on 14 December 1972 by Tom Boardman, Minister for Industry. Later renumbered A425. Daventry was being expanded as part of an overspill scheme for the reception of population and industry from Birmingham.
1972 - Peterborough Northern Bypass Northamptonshire Stage 1: Soke Parkway (west section) from A47 Thorpe Wood Interchange to A15 Lincoln Road was opened on 5 October 1972. The 3 mile dual carriageway cost £2 million. It included a new bridge over the East Coast Main Line, two other road bridges, two footbridges, five pedestrian subways and a big footbridge complex at Lincoln Road Interchange. It was the first section of a 34 mile planned parkway system, as the city was expected to double in size over the next 15 years. The Parkway name came from the intensive tree and shrub planting along them. Later became A47 on completion of the bypass.
1972 - Wolviston to A178 Durham Seal Sands Road. Under construction on 1971/72 Philips Road atlas. Shown on 1972/73 edition. Later renumbered as A1185. The connection to Wolviston Back Lane has been severed due to a diversion.
1973 M5 Portbury - Edithmead Somerset The 22.5 mile section from J19 to J22 was opened on 25 January 1973. The official opening date was to have been 23 January 1973 but heavy and continuous rain followed by overnight frosts prevented the completion of the road markings in time. Cost £33 million. Portbury is now known as Gordano Interchange.
1973 M5 Edithmead - Dunball Somerset The 5 mile Highbridge Bypass from J22 to J23 was opened on 5 July 1973. It was to have opened in August but was opened early to relieve Highbridge of summer holiday traffic. There was a half mile contraflow in the middle section using the southbound carriageway whilst the remaining bridgeworks were completed.
1973 M5 Dunball - Huntworth Somerset The 4.7 mile Bridgwater Bypass from J23 to J24 was opened on 18 December 1973 by John Peyton, Minister of Transport. Cost £8 million. It had two 36 foot carriageways, 9 foot 6 inch hard shoulders and a 13 foot wide central reservation. There were 7 new bridges and a viaduct over the River Parrett.
1973 M9 Pirnhall - Craigforth Stirlingshire Stirling Bypass Stage 2 from J9 to J10 was opened on 28 December 1973 (per Edinburgh Gazette), 4.7 miles. There was an official opening on 22 May 1974 by Lord Hughes, Minister of State at the Scottish Office.
1973 M40 Denham - Beaconsfield Buckinghamshire A 7.2 mile eastwards extension, J1 (start of M40) to J2 was opened on 23 August 1973. It incorporated a grooved concrete road surface, developed by the Cement and Concrete Association and designed to reduce skidding, as a trial. Prior to opening, in October 1972, part of a month old bridge had to be blown up due to suspect concrete in one of the supports. It required more than 70 small explosions due to houses nearby at Windsor Road, Gerrard's Cross.
1973 M57 Tarbock - Forest House, Prescott Lancashire Liverpool Outer Ring Road Phase 2 (south). The southern 2.1 miles from J1 M62 to J2 A57 was opened on 30 November 1973, the same day that the M62 was opened east of Tarbock Interchange to M6.
1973 M62 Ainley Top, Elland - Chain Bar, Cleckheaton Yorkshire The 7.5 miles from J24 to J26 was opened on 5 July 1973 by Keith Speed, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State at Department of Environment. It was the final section of the "Trans-Pennine" motorway
1973 M62 Tarbock - Croft Interchange Lancashire 10.5 miles from J6 M57 to J10 M6 was opened on 30 November 1973. On approval in 1967 it was numbered M52 as part of the South Lancashire Motorway from Liverpool to Manchester.
1973 M606 Euroway - M62 Yorkshire From J1 to J2
1973 A1(M) Welwyn to Stanborough Hertfordshire The 3.8 mile section opened on 10 August 1973 per The Gazette. J6 (north exit onto Welwyn Bypass) to Stanborough temporary junction 0.8 mile south of J5, about 148 yards north of the new A1 bridge crossing the then A6129 Stanborough Road (later B197). There was no southbound exit just a continuation onto A1. There was a temporary northbound exit from A1 which connected to B197 Great North Road 0.1 mile north of Stanborough village roundabout.
1973 A329(M) Loddon Bridge, Reading - A321, north Wokingham Berkshire The 2.75 mile central section opened on 30 January 1973. It included M4 J10 Winnersh Interchange, a two level interchange with 4 miles of access roads. The section north of Loddon Bridge had been delayed due the River Loddon bridge collapse in October 1972 whilst under construction. The eastern access was a temporary terminus on A321 Twyford road, north of Wokingham.
1973 A1 Haggerston Northumberland A 1.8 mile single carriageway deviation to bypass 3 sharp bends. Work started May 1972. May have opened in 1974. Cost £300,000.
1973 A10 Puckeridge Bypass Hertfordshire The 2.5 mile dual carriageway opened on 21 February 1973. Initially, just the northbound carriageway was in use whilst the southbound carriageway was completed. Contractor was Mears Construction Ltd., cost £700,000.
1973 A134 Wereham Bypass Norfolk The 0.5 mile single carriageway road was opened on 25 June 1973 . The road split the village in two, with the main concern being the children crossing it to go to school. The road had a 30mph limit.
1973 A27 Arundel Sussex Arundel Bypass
1973 A34 Oxford Oxfordshire Oxford Western Bypass Dualling
1973 A34 Abingdon Bypass Berkshire Stage 1: Oxford Southern Bypass (Hinksey Hill Interchange) to a temporary junction with Steventon Road south of Drayton (now B4017). The 8.25 mile dual carriageway was to be opened on 4 September 1973 by David Smith, Lord Lieutenant of Berkshire. Contract cost £4.4 million. It was 6 months ahead of schedule due to taking advantage of dry spells since work began in January 1972. Abingdon Mayor Councillor Peter Merritt fulfilled his promise of buying the 250 workers of the Amey-Fairclough consortium contractors a pint if the road was opened before the Michaelmass Fair.
1973 A38 Chudleigh and Chudleigh Knighton Bypass Devon The 4.5 mile dual carriageway opened on 21 June 1973 per Chudleigh History Group. It is, however, shown on the OS Dartmoor one inch map, major roads revised 1972. It was reported on 9 November 1972 as nearing completion. Tender price £3.9 million.
1973 A38 Ivybridge and Bittaford Bypass Devon The 4.2 mile dual carriageway from Wrangaton Cross to Westover Junction (including those junctions) was opened in 1973 per Ivybridge Town Council history page. It had dual 25 foot carriageways, a 15 foot central reservation and 12 foot side verges. Contractor was Peter Lind and Co. Ltd., tender price £3.4 million. The contract was accepted in November 1971 and work was expected to take 2 years.
1973 A38 Sutton Coldfield Bypass Warwickshire The 6 mile dual carriageway from Minworth to Canwell (north of Bassetts Pole) opened on 10 August 1973. Contractor was R.M. Douglas Construction Ltd., contract value £2.8 million, total cost £4 million. The adjacent A4097 and A446 sections were utilised to form the bypass. The improvement of the former A4097 between Gravelly Hill and Minworth was to be completed in the autumn giving a wholly dual carriageway route from Birmingham to the Derby boundary.
1973 A350
Melksham Bypass Wiltshire Western Way and Beanacre Road link. Under construction on May 1972 OS Quarter inch map. Shown on September 1974 map. Opened between those dates.
1973 A41 West Bromwich Staffordshire West Bromwich Town Centre Bypass
1973 A41(M) Tring Hertfordshire Tring Bypass,later downgraded as A41 in 1987
1973 A451 Kidderminster Inner Ring Road Worcestershire Stage 3 – Constitution Hill Ringway between Comberton Hill and Worcester Road. Opened 17 August 1973 by Keith Speed, Parliamentary Under-secretary at Department of Environment. Contractor was Wrekin Construction Ltd., cost £1.7 million. It included a 320m sculptoral concrete retaining wall designed by the sculptor William Mitchell, which is visible from the town. The water cascade which ran dry and was switched off in 1986 was restored and opened again in March 2021 as a memorial to those who died during the Covid pandemic.
1973 A483 Wrexham Bypass Denbighshire The 4 mile road from Croes Foel to Plas Acton was opened on 14 December 1973 by Peter Thomas, Secretary of State for Wales. It had dual two lane 24 feet carriageways, 2 two level interchanges and 2 terminal roundabouts. Contractor was Sir Alfred McAlpine and Son, cost £2,797,080.
1973 A604 A1 - Godmanchester Huntingdonshire Huntingdon Bypass, now part of A14
1973 A74 Mossband Viaduct - Kirkpatrick Fleming Dumfriesshire Dualling, it was replaced by a motorway in 1992 & 2008
1973 A76 Hurlford Ayrshire Hurlford Bypass
1973 A77 Bogend Toll - Fenwick Ayrshire Kilmarnock Bypass
1973 A85 Inchyra - Glendoick Perthshire Dualling, later renumbered to A90 in 1994
1973 A814 Glasgow: Clydeside Expressway Lanarkshire The 3.25 mile dual carriageway between Whiteinch Interchange, Partick and M8 J19 Anderston Interchange was opened on 27 April 1973 by Glasgow’s Lady Provost Mary Gray. It connected the Clyde Tunnel with the motorway inner ring road. Carriageways were 7.3m wide. Consulting engineer was Sir William Halcrow and Partners. Contractor was Balfour Beatty & Co. Ltd., forecast cost £5.75 million. The interchanges at both ends had been built previously.
1974 M3 Sunbury Cross - Bagshot/ Lightwater Middlesex • Surrey The 13.75 mile eastward extension between the terminus at J1 to J3 opened on 6 August 1974 per The Gazette.
1974 M5 Avonmouth - Portbury Gloucestershire • Somerset The 3 mile section from J18 to J19 including Avonmouth Bridge was opened on 23 May 1974. The opening had been delayed by 2 years due to technical and labour problems. Initially traffic was restricted to a single lane each way with a 40 mph speed limit but due to the congestion it was increased to 2 lanes each way in early June and lasted until at least October. Cost £5.5 million. Avonmouth is now known as Lawrence Weston Interchange and Portbury as Gordano Interchange.
1974 M5 Blackbrook - Chelston Somerset The 6.4 mile Taunton Bypass from J25 to J26 had a Gazette opening date of 10 April 1974. It had been given priority over the adjacent northern North Petherton section.
1974 M23 Hooley - Pease Pottage Surrey • Sussex The 16 miles from J7 to J11 was opened on 19 December 1974 per The Gazette. Contractor was W. and C. French (Construction) Ltd.. It opened briefly with no intermediate junctions; J10 Crawley Interchange opened on 28 February 1975, J9 Gatwick Interchange on 23 April 1975 and J8 M25 Merstham Interchange on 10 February 1976.
1974 M40 Stokenchurch - Wheatley Oxfordshire 9.5 mile westwards extension from J5 to J8 opened on 28 March 1974 per The Gazette. J8 was the western end of the original M40 until 1991 and was at Waterstock Lane.
1974 M56 Sharston Bypass Cheshire • Lancashire Stage 1 - The 1.3 miles from J1 Kingsway Interchange to J2 Sharston Interchange opened on 26 March 1974 per The Gazette. Also opened was a 1.2 mile eastwards continuation of M63 (now M60) to Roscoes Roundabout.
1974 M56 Bowdon - M6 Lymm Interchange Cheshire The 5.2 miles from J7 to J9 opened on 16 December 1974. The dual 3 lane carriageways ran in cuttings for most of its length. Lymm Interchange was partly opened giving access from M56 to M6 northbound and the A50 roundabout. Contractor was Robert McGregor and Sons Ltd., tender cost £4.65 million.
1974 M57 Forest House, Prescott - Knowsley Wood Lancashire Liverpool Outer Ring Road Phase 2 (north) between J2 A57 and J5 A580 East Lancs Road was opened on 27 March 1974 by Alderman W. Cooper, Chairman of the Lancashire Highways committee (M57 was a Lancashire County Council Scheme). A 4 mile dual 3 lane motorway. It linked the two adjoining sections to complete the M57 which cost £15 million.
1974 M62 Croft Interchange - Eccles Interchange Lancashire 9 miles from J10 M6 to J12 M63 was opened on 22 August 1974 by Fred Mulley, Minister of Transport per Liverpool Echo. It completed the missing section of the Liverpool to Manchester motorway. Construction near Holcroft Lane, Culcheth involved the excavation of 3 million tons of peat which was disposed of on farmland bought for the purpose. The Gazette listed an opening date of 11 October 1974.
1974 M62 M1 Lofthouse Interchange - Whitley Bridge, Eggborough Yorkshire 17 miles from J29 to J34 opened on 27 August 1974. Cost £16 million.
1974 M62 Whitley Bridge, Eggborough - Pollington Yorkshire 3.5 miles from J34 to a Temporary Terminus with A645, 50 metres west of Green Lane (possibly Field Lane) north of Pollington, opened on 8 November 1974 per The Gazette. The Liverpool Echo on 22 October 1974 reported that it was to open on 29 October 1974, but there could have been some delay.
1974 M63 Sale Eastern and Northenden Bypass Cheshire • Lancashire The 4.3 miles southwards extension from J7 Chester Road to J10 Kingsway Interchange (now J4 M60) opened on 11 October 1974 per The Gazette. Tender cost was £9.1 million. Previously opened on 26 March 1974 along with the M56 Sharston Bypass Stage 1 contract was the 1.2 mile eastwards continuation of M63 from M56 at Kingsway Interchange to J11 Roscoes Roundabout (now J2 M60). Later renumbered M60.
1974 M80 Denny Bypass Stirlingshire The existing A80 dual carriageway (opened in 1963 or 1964) from J7 Haggs Junction to Ingliston, 1 mile north of Dunipace, was upgraded to M80 on 22 May 1974. The original Ingliston roundabout connection was removed.
1974 M80 Ingliston - Pirnhall Stirlingshire The 2.5 mile motorway from Ingliston, 1 mile north of Dunipace and the end of the Denny Bypass section, to M9 at Pirnhall opened on 22 May 1974.
1974 M876 Dennyloanhead - North Broomage Stirlingshire The existing A876 dual carriageway (opened on 13 October 1965) from M80 J8 Bankhead Interchange to J2 at North Broomage Roundabout was upgraded to M876 on 22 May 1974.
1974 A329(M) Reading - Loddon Bridge Berkshire The 2.5 mile western section opened on 14 February 1974. The western terminus was with A4 at Sutton Seeds Roundabout. The westbound span of the Loddon Bridge was still under construction following the bridge collapse in October 1972, whilst under construction, and so the eastbound span had two way traffic for a further two months or so. The viaduct over the river and flood plain was 1100 feet long. Contractor was Marple Ridgeway and cost £2 million. Reported in Reading Evening Post, no opening notice seen in The Gazette. This section was later downgraded and became A3290.
1974 A329(M) A321, north Wokingham - Coppid Beech, Bracknell Berkshire The 2 mile eastern section opened on 14 November 1974. Contractor was Costain Civil Engineering Ltd. and cost £1.75 million. The temporary junction previously opened on A321 Twyford road, north of Wokingham was closed. Coppid Beech was also known as Amen Corner. Reported in Reading Evening Post, no opening notice seen in The Gazette.
1974 A108 Sunderland Bypass Durham The final 1.5 mile section from A183 Chester Road Interchange to Hylton Grange Interchange was due to open on 30 September 1974 (earlier sections had opened in 1972). It had been delayed by national safety concerns re the steel box girder Hylton Viaduct over River Wear. Construction of the viaduct was halted in June 1971 and did not recommence until early 1973. Extra stiffening was put in the girders. It opened with contra flow on the northbound carriageway, with the southbound carriageway being expected to open two months later. Contractor was W. and C. French (Construction) Ltd.. Later renumbered A19.
1974 A38 South Brent Bypass Devon The contract for the dual carriageway from Dry Bridge to Syon Abbey was let in May 1972 for £3.3 million. It may have opened in late 1973.
1974 A38 Ashburton - Heathfield Devon Coldeast Bypass & Dualling
1974 A40 spur Gloucester: Barnwood Spur Gloucestershire A417 Barnwood Bypass to A40 Elmbridge Court Roundabout, at west end of Golden Valley Bypass. 0.9 mile dual carriageway. Opened between OS one inch map revised June 1973 and Quarter inch map revised March 1974. It may have opened in 1973. Later OS 1:50000 maps do not show a road number so it has neen reported as A40 spur as OS now shows.
1974 A46 Kenilworth Bypass Warwickshire The 6 mile D3 road from Stivichall Interchange, Coventry, to Guy's Cliff Interchange, at the north end of Warwick Bypass, was opened on 21 June 1974 by Charles Smith-Ryland, Lord-Lieutenant of Warwickshire. A new technique in concrete laying gave it a grooved surface to reduce skid risk when wet. The grooves allowed water to run off the road. Contractor was Higgs and Hill., cost £6.2 million. First official vehicle on opening was a 1927 Four ton lorry renovated by the contractors during their 1974 centenary celebrations.
1974 A46 Cheylesmore and Stivichall Bypass Warwickshire The 1.5 mile dual carriageway from London Road railway bridge to Stivichall Interchange was opened on 22 August 1974. The flyover for southbound traffic at Whitley Island remained closed until June 1975 due to concerns about one of the ten spans having had a weak concrete mix. However the span remained since, unusually, it gained in strength. Contractor Dowsett Engineering Co. Ltd., cost £3 million. Renumbered as A444 and A4114 in 1989 when Coventry Eastern Bypass was opened.
1974 A449 Ombersley Bypass Worcestershire The 1.3 mile dual carriageway was to open on 22 October 1974. Cost £780,000. Worcester News carried a photo of resident Timothy Geraghy sweeping the road prior to opening. It completed the 9.75 mile dual carriageway between Waresley (Hartlebury) and M5 J6.
1974 A454 Willenhall Bypass Staffordshire The Keyway. The 1 mile dual carriageway from Portobello Island to Bilston Road (A463, now B4484) was officially opened on 27 March 1974 per an ATV Today news clip on Mace Archive. Cost £1.3 million. When the grant from the Environment Department was made to Walsall Council in December 1970 it was planned to link the road at the south-eastern end to the proposed Bilston Link Road. That road was then put on hold so the Willenhall bypass terminated on Bilston Road, but with the grade separated roundabout constructed. The urban A463 was then used eastwards as the bypass route.
1974 A465 Glynneath - Rhigos Roundabout, Hirwaun Glamorgan • Brecknockshire The 5.5 mile dual carriageway was opened on 3 May 1974. It had dual 24 foot carriageways and the steepest gradient was 1 in 20. It included the 100 foot high Pontneathvaughan Viaduct passing over the confluence of Nedd Fechan and the Mellte. Contractor was Cementation Construction Ltd., cost £9.5 million. A temporary section of dual carriageway west of Glynneath Interchange ran to the north of River Neath to rejoin the old road at the Lamb and Flag, Glynneath. The Glynneath to Aberdulais section opened later.
1974 A474 Neath Southern Link Road Glamorgan The 0.8 mile dual carriageway from Court Herbert to Stockham's Corner was opened on 7 April 1974. It opened prior to the A465 section between Llandarcy and Aberdulais (opened February 1975) to which it connected at Neath Abbey Interchange.
1974 A553 Bidston Bypass Cheshire 0.7 mile dual carriageway opened on 3 January 1974. Contractor was Costain Civil Engineers (London), cost £1.4 million. It included a spur road to Bidston Station. The M53 link was later and by 1977.
1974 A613 Gateshead Western Bypass Durham 4.8 mile dual carriageway between Blaydon and Team Valley. Later renumbered to A69 and renumbered again in 1990 to A1 on completion of the Newcastle Western Bypass. Bridge problems delayed the full opening to Birtley until 1975.
1974 A82 Fort William Inverness-shire Fort William Town Centre Bypass
1974 A85 Kinfauns - Inchyra Perthshire Dualling, later renumbered to A90 in 1994
1975 M1 Staples Corner - Fiveways Interchange Middlesex The 2.34 mile northbound carriageway from J1 to J2 opened on 27 May 1975. The southbound carriageway opening was deferred pending the North Circular Road flyovers at Staples Corner being completed. The southbound carriageway opened in Summer 1977.
1975 M5 Huntworth - Blackbrook Somerset The 7.2 mile North Petherton bypass from J24 to J25 was opened 4 November 1975 but not designated as a motorway whilst work was completed on the northbound carriageway. Adverse weather had caused the delay. Speed limits applicable were therefore 60 m.p.h. on dual carriageway sections and 50 m.p.h. where traffic used one carriageway. The emergency telephones were not in operation and the advice for breakdowns was for the motorist to stop on the hard shoulder, raise the bonnet and switch on hazard lights if fitted and to wait with the vehicle until the police arrived. This advice applied on the contraflow sections with no hard shoulder in operation too! The motorway became fully operational on 25 November 1975, although there were still lane restrictions near to Moon Lane. Contractor was A. Monk and Co. Ltd. and tender cost £5,721,086.
1975 M5 Cullompton - Sandygate, Exeter Devon The 11.5 mile Sowton and Killerton sections from J28 to J30 was opened on 16 October 1975. It included the conversion of the southern section of Cullompton Bypass to motorway.
1975 M11 South Harlow - Bishop's Stortford Essex • Hertfordshire The 9.7 mile section from J7 Hastingwood to J8 Birchanger Green was opened on 23 June 1975 by Neil Carmichael, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Department of Environment. Contractor was Fitzpatrick and Son (Contractors) Ltd., tender cost £7.1 million, total cost £10.5 million.
1975 M18 Thorne Bypass - M62 Langham Yorkshire The 4.5 miles from J6 Waterside to J7 with M62 at Langham Interchange was opened on 30 September 1975 per The Gazette.
1975 M23 Gatwick Airport Link Surrey The 1 mile spur from J9 to J9a Airport Way was opened on 23 April 1975 per The Gazette. Contractor was W. and C. French (Construction) Ltd..
1975 M27 Cadnam - Ower Hampshire The 3.5 miles from J1 to J2 opened on 20 August 1975 per The Gazette (this superceded the earlier notice for a 14 August 1975 opening). The J2 roundabout and the 0.5 mile northern link road to Romsey Road at Ower was also opened as a Special Road under the same Gazette notice (later downgraded to A36). The first section of M27.
1975 M27 Windhover - Park Gate Hampshire The 3 miles from J8 to J9 was opened on 25 September 1975 per The Gazette.
1975 M27 Ower - Chilworth Hampshire The 7 miles from J2 to the then A33 (now M3) via the north-western spur at J4 opened on 22 December 1975.
1975 M32 Eastville - St Agnes Gloucestershire The final section of M32, the 1 mile from J2 to J3 at Lower Ashley Road Interchange, was opened on 6 June 1975 per The Gazette.
1975 M54 Wellington Bypass Shropshire The initial 5 mile section of M54 between Priorslee Interchange and J7 Cluddley was opened on 11 December 1975. Contractor was Gleesons Civil Engineering, cost £11 million. Priorslee Interchange closed when M54 was extended eastwards in 1983.
1975 M55 Broughton - Marton Circle, Blackpool Lancashire 12 mile extension from J1 to J4. Opened 3 July 1975 by Neil Carmichael, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Department of Environment. Contractor was a McAlpine/ Fairclough consortium, cost £14 million on a fixed price contract.
1975 M56 Sharston Bypass Cheshire Stage 2 - The 0.9 miles from J2 Sharston Interchange to J3 at Wythenshawe opened on 14 May 1975 per The Gazette. It connected the M56 westbound section to the link east of J2 to M63 (now M60) opened in the previous year. Contractor was Leonard Fairclough, tender price £5 million.
1975 M56 M6 Lymm Interchange - Preston Brook Cheshire The 5.2 miles from J9 to J11 was opened on 16 July 1975 by Gordon Oakes, Parliamentary Under-Secretary to Department of Environment. This section's completion had been delayed from the planned Summer 1974 by bad weather. It completed the centre section of M56 which was now 28.5 miles long and Lymm Interchange was fully opened. The Minister said that the motorway was not something for which a single individual can claim the whole credit. It was the outcome of contributions made by a great variety of people... some with white collars, some with blue collars and some with no collars at all. Contractor was Marples Ridgeway Ltd., tender cost £6.3 million.
1975 M62 Pollington - Goole Yorkshire 9 miles from the previous Temporary Terminus with A645, 50 metres west of Green Lane (possibly Field Lane) north of Pollington, to J36 opened on 30 September 1975 per The Gazette. Contractor was W. and C. French (Construction) Ltd..
1975 M62 Liverpool (The Rocket) - Tarbock Eastbound only Lancashire 4.2 miles from J4 (just east of Queens Drive) to J6 M57 was opened on 23 December 1975. It was only opened for traffic leaving Liverpool because the J4 Rocket flyover was not complete owing to shortages of materials, and opening the westbound carriageway would have led to chaos on the existing roads at the end of the motorway.
1975 M66 Simister - Heap Bridge, Bury Lancashire Bury Easterly Bypass: South section. The 3.2 mile northwards from M62 J18 Simister Island to J2 A58 Heap Bridge opened on 4 August 1975 per The Gazette.
1975 M271 Redbridge - Upton Hampshire Nursling Link. The 2.5 miles complete motorway, either side of M27 Rownhams Interchange, opened on 22 December 1975.
1975 M531 Ellesmere Port Motorway Cheshire J1 north of Hooton to J6 Stanlow Halt Interchange at Little Stanney opened on 22 December 1975. It included upgrading the Hooton Industrial Road to motorway standard (became A5032 until the appropriation as motorway) and 3 miles of new motorway through and south of Ellesmere Port. Cost £6 million. There are opening notices in The Gazette for the Hooton Industrial Road upgrade section but none found for the new section. Liverpool Echo reported that both sections opened together. Later renumbered M53 and J5 to J10.
1975 M898 Bishopton - Erskine Renfrewshire Entire Motorway
1975 A1(M) Newcastle Central Motorway East Northumberland Town Moor - Tyne Bridge, Newcastle upon Tyne was opened on 12 August 1975 by Derek Sleightholme, Chairman of Tyne and Wear County Council. Contractor was Costain Civil Engineering Co. Ltd. The 1.25 mile road cost £15 million. Later renumbered to A6127(M), now A167(M).
1975 A58(M) Armley - Westgate, Leeds Yorkshire Inner Ring Road Stage 3
1975 A1 South Mimms Middlesex 1.3 mile online and offline dualling. From just north of B556 (former A111) to J1. Constructed at same time as Bignells Corner interchange (also known as South Mimms Interchange). Re-numbered A1(M) in 1979.
1975 A1 Wansford Bypass Bridge Huntingdonshire • Northamptonshire This bridge over the River Nene formed the new southbound carriageway and was east of the 1929 bridge, which became the northbound carriageway. The 0.6 mile of dual carriageway between Stibbington and Wansford completed the missing link, being the final section of A1 dualling between Hatfield and Birtley/ Eighton.
1975 A11
Newmarket Bypass Suffolk • Cambridgeshire Opened on 11 July 1975. It included a £60,000 subway to allow horses to cross to the heath. Later renumbered A14 with A11 south of A14 J36 Nine Mile Hill
1975 A11 Bishop's Stortford North-eastern Bypass Essex • Hertfordshire The 1.25 mile road from M11 J8 Birchanger Green to Stansted Road opened for the M11 opening to J8 on 23 June 1975. It provided a link from M11 to the then A11 prior to the Stump Cross M11 section being completed. The single carriageway had a 24 foot width with 12 foot verges. It is unsure if it opened as A11. Later renumbered A120.
1975 A17 Sleaford Lincolnshire Sleaford Bypass
1975 A19 Crathorne Yorkshire Crathorne Bypass
1975 A1065 Fakenham Western Bypass Norfolk Hempton Green to A148 Cheake Road. Opened in Summer 1975. The section across Hempton Green was previously unclassified.
1975 A30 Camborne and Redruth Bypass Cornwall The 6 mile dual carriageway between Treswithian and Scorrier was reported as recently opened in the West Briton and Cornwall Advertiser of 11 March 1976. It was still under construction per Hansard of 19 May 1975. Opened between those dates.
1975 A31 Ringwood - Cadnam Hampshire Section dualled
1975 A34 Newbury - M4 Link Road Berkshire 3 mile dual carriageway from Western Avenue, Newbury to Chieveley Interchange. Described on 22 July 1975 as shortly to open. Also known as "Donnington Link" although it was the Donnington Bypass. The section south of Donnington Interchange was renumbered A339 when Newbury Bypass opened in 1998.
1975 A38, A516 Mickleover Bypass Derbyshire Derby Western bypass Stage 2. 3.5 mile dual carriageway from just south of Doles Lane, Findern to Kingsway Roundabout, Derby opened on 19 February 1975. Cost £5.5 million. It included the A516 dual carriageway spurs from Etwall Road, Mickleover (1.1 mile) and Royal Derby Hospital Roundabout (0.6 mile) with a D3 section on A38 between the spurs. A5111 Kingsway was also dualled from Kingsway Roundabout to 0.25 mile south of A52 Ashbourne Road. Later renumbered A38.
1975 A303 Wylye Bypass Wiltshire Completed in 1975/76 per Wiltshire County Council footpath appeal minutes of 15 October 2008.
1975 A45 Stowmarket – Claydon Suffolk Stowmarket, Needham Market, Great Blakenham and Claydon Bypass. Was due to be completed in November 1975 per Hansard. It may have opened later. Later renumbered A14.
1975 A47 King's Lynn Southern Bypass Norfolk The 2 mile road from Pullover Farm, south of Pullover Roundabout to Hardwick Roundabout was opened on 22 May 1975 by Neil Carmichael, Parliamentary Under-secretary of State for Department of Environment. Dual carriageway. It had included 2 nine month settlement periods for embankments due to poor soil conditions and this resulted in the works taking 3 years. Ouse Bridge needed 76 steel “H” piles for the bed of each pier. Contractor was W. and C. French (Construction) Ltd., cost £4.7 million.
1975 A429 Ettington Bypass Warwickshire The 1.2 mile road opened in early Summer 1975. Cost was £375,000, which was £59,000 more than the original contract price due to a delay in issuing the contract which led to extra winter earthwork costs. Note that the A422 still passed through the village.
1975 A453 East Midlands Airport - M1 Link Road Leicestershire Kegworth Western Bypass. The 0.8 mile single carriageway road from Ashby Road to M1 J24 Kegworth Interchange was opened in early September 1975 by Coun. Kathleen Wildsmith, Vice-chairman of Leicestershire County Council's planning committee. Cost £250,000.
1975 A465 Llandarcy - Aberdulais Glamorgan The 3.75 mile dual carriageway was opened on 26 February 1975 per Neath Guardian. Contractor was Sidney Green (Contractors) Ltd. of Henley-on-Thames in a consortium with Kier, contract price £6.87 million. Expected total cost (including Neath Southern Link opened in April 1974) was £13 million. Llandarcy Interchange was then with A48 (now M4 J43).
1975 A50 Blythe Bridge Bypass Staffordshire The 2.5 mile dual carriageway from Catchems Corner (in west) to Stonehouses was opened on 1 October 1975 by George Newman, Staffordshire County Council Chairman. Also at the opening were campaigners for M64. The road was 27.5 metres wide with 7 bridges and noise barriers. Contractor was Peter Lind and Co. Ltd., cost £2 million. The section east of Tean Roundabout was later renumbered A521 and the east section of Stonehouses junction became unclassified.
1975 A5036 Seaforth Dock Link Road Lancashire A dual carriageway link from the newly constructed Royal Seaforth Dock in Liverpool to the motorway system at Switch Island via the existing A567 dual carriageway from Kirkstone Road northwards. Phase 1, the dualling of Church Road southwards to Hawthorne Road was completed by April 1972, contractor Norwest Holst and contract cost £315,000. Phase 2 was the new Princess Way, with a bridge over the Leeds and Liverpool Canal and a new interchange with A565 at Crosby Road North, Seaforth. A single carriageway section south to Sandy Road opened on 4 November 1974 (dual carriageway from March 1975) and dual carriageway to Crosby Road on 22 February 1975. Total cost of scheme was £2.5 million.
1975 A61 Sheffield - Chesterfield Derbyshire Dronfield & Unstone Bypass
1975 A69 Heddon-on-the-Wall & Throckley Bypass Northumberland The 9 mile dual carriageway opened on 2 December 1975. Contractor was W. and C. French (Construction) Ltd., cost £6.3 million.
1975 A613 Gateshead Western Bypass Durham The remaining 1.3 mile dual carriageway section between Team Valley and Birtley. The first section had opened in 1974. Renumbered in 1990 to A1.
1975 A82 Ballachulish Argyll Ballachulish Bridge bypassing Kinlochleven
1975 A9 Inveralmond Perthshire Almond Bridge
1975 A9 Duncanston-Findon Mains Ross-shire Cromarty bridge approaches
1975 A92 Cammachmore Kincardineshire Cammachmore Bypass, later renumbered to A90 in 1994
1975 C22 Applecross - Kenmore Ross-shire Applecross northern coastal route; now Highland C1087. The Kyle of Lochalsh - Toscaig ferry ceased around the same time.
1976 M5 Chelston - Tiverton Parkway Somerset • Devon The 8.8 mile section from J26 to J27 was opened on 21 October 1976. Contractor was Tarmac Construction and cost £12.4 which also included the section southwards to the Cullompton Bypass. Tiverton Parkway was originally known as the Waterloo Cross Interchange or Sampford Peverell.
1976 M5 Tiverton Parkway - Cullompton Devon The 3.2 mile section from J27 to J28 was opened on 8 July 1976. Contractor was Tarmac Construction. It included the conversion of the northern section of Cullompton Bypass to motorway. Tiverton Parkway was originally known as the Waterloo Cross Interchange or Sampford Peverell.
1976 M25 Godstone - Reigate Hill Surrey The 6 miles from J6 to J8 was opened on 10 February 1976 per The Gazette. The opening included the 4 level stack interchange with M23 at J7 Merstham Interchange. Contractor was W. and C. French (Construction) Ltd..
1976 M25 M3 Thorpe - A30 Egham (Runnymede South) Surrey The 2.5 miles from J12 to J13's Southern interchange, south of Runnymede Bridge, was to be opened on 1 December 1976 per The Gazette. Contractors were Bovis/ Fairclough.
1976 M27 Park Gate - Portsbridge Hampshire The 8.5 miles from J9 to the eastern end of M27 at Portsbridge, where it joined the A27 Farlington and Cosham Bypass, was opened on 11 March 1976 per The Gazette. It included the spur at J12 to A27 at Paulsgrove.
1976 M42 Monkspath - Coleshill Warwickshire First section of M42. The 8 mile section from J4 to J7a and temporary access, just to the north of M6, to the unclassified Coleshill Heath Road was opened on 8 November 1976. The junctions were originally numbered J1 Monkspath to J4 Coleshill Interchange. Cost £25 million. A further 1.5 mile section had been constructed northwards to the River Cole but remained unopened until the northward extension in 1985.
1976 M62 Howden - North Cave Yorkshire 9 miles from J37 to J38 opened on 19 February 1976 per The Gazette. J38 is the eastern terminus of M62 and connected onto the A63. This section was completed slightly ahead of the western M62 Ouse Bridge section.
1976 M62 Goole - Howden Yorkshire 3 miles from J36 to J37 opened on 24 May 1976. This completed the Yorkshire section of M62. The section included M62 Ouse Bridge. Guest of Honour was Martin Bingham, aged 9, who had asked the Boothferry local authority if he could attend the ceremony for the bridge opening. The 1.6km bridge had 28 piers and a mid span height of 30m.
1976 M62 Liverpool (The Rocket) - Tarbock Westbound Lancashire 4.2 miles from J4 (just east of Queens Drive) to J6 M57 was fully opened on 27 November 1976 (the eastbound carriageway having opened on 23 December 1975). The completion of J4 Rocket Flyover had been delayed due to shortage of materials. There were possibly some temporary arrangements since there is a notice of opening on 27 May 1976 in The Gazette for the 0.6 mile westbound carriageway through J4. Contract cost for the full scheme was £11.5 million.
1976 M69 Hinckley Road - Enderby Leicestershire Present J2 to J3
1976 M275 M27 Hilsea - Portsmouth Hampshire The connecting roads from M27 J12 Hilsea to M275 Portsmouth North-south Motorway (and hence M275) were opened on 11 March 1976 per The Gazette.
1976 A10 Ware Bypass Hertfordshire Opened 17 August 1976 by Brian Hall, Chairman of Hertfordshire County Council's Highways Committee. Dual carriageway. It included a viaduct across King's Meads, River Lea and New River. Cost £3.6 million.
1976 A12 Wickham Market and Ufford Bypass Suffolk Opened on 22 July 1976.
1976 A2 Boughton and Dunkirk Bypass Kent The 3 mile dual carriageway from Brenley Corner to the Gate Inn, Dunkirk was opened on 2 March 1976 by John Waite, Chairman of Kent County Council. Contractor was Mears, cost £3 million. This had doubled since the 1972 estimate and there would have been savings had it not gone to public enquiry.
1976 A2 Bridge Bypass Kent The 2.75 mile dual carriageway was opened on 29 June 1976 by John Gilbert, Transport Minister. Also 1.25 mile upgrade to dual carriageway towards Barham. Cost £3.25 million.
1976 A282 Darenth - Swanley Kent Dual carriageway linking the A2 Darenth interchange with Swanley Interchange. Later on upgraded and renumbered as the M25.
1976 A3 Ripley Bypass Surrey Reported in October 1976 by Coventry Evening Telegraph as having been previously completed 3 months ahead of schedule. Contractor was Cementation.
1976 A3 Esher and Cobham Bypass Surrey Opened on 15 December 1976 per Hansard. Contractor was W. and C. French (Construction) Ltd., expected cost £19 million.
1976 A30 Bolventor Cornwall Bolventor Bypass
1976 A30 Bridestowe Devon A 0.9 mile single carriageway bypass. Later became unclassified when the Okehampton to Launceston dual carriageway section was opened in 1993.
1976 A30 Launceston Devon • Cornwall Launceston Bypass
1976 A30 Bodmin Bypass Cornwall The opening of the 7 mile dual carriageway was delayed from 16 December 1976 due to heavy rain. There was to be a short delay which may have gone into 1977. It was still 5 months ahead of schedule. The extension of dual carriageway to Higher Carblake was to open on 13 December 1976. Contractor was Sir Alfred McAlpine, cost £8.5 million.
1976 A34 Litchfield and Whitchurch Bypass Hampshire The 4 mile single carriageway road from North of North Arch, Litchfield to Tufton was expected to open in January 1976 per Hansard debate report of 30 October 1975. Contractor Brimms & Co. Ltd., cost £2.4 million. It utilised the line of the disused Newbury to Winchester railway line in part. It was constructed to allow for it to be converted to dual carriageway later, which was completed in 1981.
1976 A38 Liskeard Bypass Cornwall The 2 mile road from Moorswater to Islandhop opened in February 1976 with no official opening per a BFI News clip. 24 foot dual carriageways. Contractor was Costain Civil Engineering Ltd., tender price £3 million, cost £5 million.
1976 A380 Newton Abbot and Kingsteignton Bypass Devon Opened on 21 May 1976 by Councillor Charles Ansell, County Council leader (per a 30th anniversary article in Mid Devon Advertiser). 3.25 mile dual carriageway, cost £8.5 million. It included the 470 yard eleven span Teign Estuary Viaduct.
1976 A41 Thornburn Road - Tranmere Roundabout Cheshire New Ferry Bypass Stage 2
1976 A405 Rickmansworth Bypass (North Orbital) Hertfordshire The 6 miles from Maple Cross to Hunton Bridge, Watford was opened on 26 February 1976. It became part of M25 in 1985 (apart from Denham Way at the southern end which remained as a link road). Contractor was Costain.
1976 A439 Harvington Bypass Worcestershire Opened 6 November 1976. The 0.6 mile bypass cost £400,000. It was bypassed and declassified later by the A46 Alcester to Evesham dual carriageway.
1976 A55 Chester Southern Bypass Cheshire • Flintshire The 7 mile road from A41 at Christleton to Broughton was opened on 23 December 1976. It was dual carriageway except for one mile at the Broughton end. Contractor was Sir Alfred McAlpine and Sons.
1976 A63 Newport - South Cave Yorkshire Dualling
1976 A64 York Yorkshire York Southern Bypass
1976 A66 Brough Bypass Westmorland The 1.5 mile bypass plus 1 mile of adjacent dual carriageway was opened on 27 August 1976. Cost £3 million.
1976 A66 Keswick Northern Bypass Cumberland The 2.5 mile road from Portinscale in the west to High Briary was opened on 27 August 1976. The contractor was Tarmac Construction, Wolverhampton and price £3.84 million. Work started in early 1974. It included the spectacular 120 feet high Greta Bridge viaduct across the Greta Valley.
1976 A75 Gretna Dumfriesshire Gretna Bypass
1976 A78 Irvine Bypass Ayrshire Irvine Burns Club cairn has a plaque by W. and C. French (Construction) Ltd., builders of Irvine Bypass, January 1976. It was due to open in late 1975 per Hansard.
1976 A85 Friarton Bridge - Kinfauns Perthshire Kinfauns Bypass & Dualling, later renumbered to A90 in 1994
1976 A9 Drumochter Lodge-Crubenmore Inverness-shire Dalwhinnie bypass
1976 A9 Dalmagarry-Slochd Inverness-shire Tomatin Bypass
1976 A94 Brechin Bypass Angus The 4.25 mile single carriageway road was opened on 17 May 1976 by Alick Buccanan-Smith, MP. Cost £1.5 million. Dualled in 1994 by Henry Boot (Scotland) Ltd., cost £9 million. Later renumbered A90.
1976 B4373 Dawley Bypass Shropshire The 1 mile road from New Road to Heath Hill Roundabout was opened on 9 August 1976. Contractor was Wrekin Construction Ltd. and contract price £440,000. It may not have been B4373 on opening since the Dawley - Donnington Distributor Road was then incomplete. It provided a bypass for the then A442 route.
1976 N/A Arnish Road, Raasay Inverness-shire Hand-built by local resident Calum Macleod; now Highland U4912.
1977 M4 Pontarddulais bypass Glamorgan • Carmarthenshire The westernmost section from J46 Llangyfelach to J49 Pont Abraham was opened on 29 April 1977. The 8.5 miles of dual two lane motorway was designed and supervised by W.S. Atkins and Partners and constructed by Sir Alfred McAlpine and Son (Northern) Ltd. at a cost of £28 million at November 1976 prices.
1977 M4 Tredegar Park, Newport - St Mellons, Cardiff Monmouthshire 4.7 miles westwards extension from J28 to J29a opened on 21 October 1977 per The Gazette. The section between J29 Castleton Interchange and J29a St Mellons became the A48(M) Cardiff Spur when the M4 was extended westwards from J29 in 1980.
1977 M4 Pyle Bypass Glamorgan The 4.5 mile section from J37 Pyle Interchange to J39 Groes Interchange was opened on 11 November 1977 by John Morris, Secretary of State for Wales. It joined the Port Talbot bypass at Groes. Contractors were Bovis Civil Engineering Ltd. for the 4.5 miles dual 2 lane road west of J37 and R.M. Douglas Construction Ltd. for J37, the link roads (and the dual 3 lane section east to Stormy Down which remained unopened until the Bridgend Bypass section opened in 1981), with costs £23 million and £5 million respectively. It necessitated the demolition of Groes village and the rebuilding of the old Round Chapel in a new location. It included viaducts over the River Cynfig and Margam railway sidings and main line, and part building over the sand dunes at Kenfig. Marram grass was sown to prevent sand drifts affecting the road.
1977 M4 Coryton, Cardiff - Pencoed Glamorgan 11 mile section from J32 to J35 was opened on 22 December 1977 per The Gazette.
1977 M5 Exeter Devon The 3.7 mile Exminster Section from J30 to J31, Sandygate to Pearce's Hill was officially opened on 27 May 1977 by James Callaghan, Prime Minister. This completed the M5. Notice was given in The Gazette of the 27 May 1977 opening but then a second notice was given with an opening date of 3 June 1977 and stating that the previous notice was superceded.
1977 M8 Glasgow - Renfrew Lanarkshire • Renfrewshire Extended from J20 to J26
1977 M11 Redbridge - South Harlow Essex The 14.5 mile southern section from the former J3 Redbridge Roundabout on A12 Eastern Avenue to J7 Hastingwood was opened on 14 April 1977 per The Gazette, excluding the southbound carriageway between J3 and J4 which opened later (1 January 1980 per The Gazette, although it may have been a late notification). The section between the former J3 and J4 was later downgraded to A406 (0.45 mile northbound and 0.85 mile southbound). Contractor for Redbridge to Loughton was W. and C. French (Construction) Ltd..
1977 M18 West Moor, ArmthorpeThorne Bypass Yorkshire The 3.5 miles from J4 to the M18 Thorne Bypass at the previous Temporary Terminus with A1146 Thorne Road was opened on 11 August 1977 per The Gazette.
1977 M20 Swanley – West Kingsdown Kent 6 mile section from J1, the west end of the motorway at the Swanley Bypass, to a Temporary Terminus with A20, 0.2 mile south east of Pells Lane, West Kingsdown. The OS 1:50000 of 1978 (revised 1977) showed a T junction. The opening date was 6 August 1977 per The Gazette although a couple of newspaper reports are unclear as to the exact date in July/ August of the opening. It was opened by Patricia Miles, wife of Derek Miles, former Chairman of the planning and transportation committee of Kent County Council. Cost £12 million.
1977 M25 A2 DarenthM20 Swanley Kent The 3.3 miles from J2 to J3 was opened on 4 April 1977 by John Horan, Minister of Transport per a report in the Sevenoaks Chronicle (of 9 April 1977). Note that the Gazette notice of opening was not until 24 June 1980. Contractor was Laing.
1977 M58 Skelmersdale and Up Holland Bypass Lancashire The first section of M58 was an upgrade to the A506 dual carriageway (previously known as the Regional Road) and opened on 17 September 1977. The 3.4 mile section from J4 Glenburn Road Interchange to J6 Orrell Interchange (J26 of M6) had dual 3 lane carriageways, hard shoulders and a 13 foot wide central reservation. Contractor was Percy Bilton and cost almost £2 million.
1977 M69 Coventry - Hinckley Road Warwickshire • Leicestershire M6 to J2
1977 M77 M8 - Dumbreck Lanarkshire Constructed to J1
1977 M180 Brigg Bypass Lincolnshire The 4.5 mile section from a Temporary Terminus at Castlethorpe (east of J4 Broughton Interchange) to J5 Barnetby Top was to be opened on 23 September 1977 per The Gazette. Cost £6 million. The town council had originally been informed that the opening would be on 17 August 1977 and had organised two weeks of parties, fun and festivities from then. Needless to say they were not pleased with the Ministry of Transport announcing that the opening would be put back for an opening by John Horam, Junior Minister, when the contractors had told the Council the road was ready to use.
1977 A1 Warenford Northumberland The 1.7 mile single carriageway deviation opened in October 1977.
1977 A158 Horncastle Inner Relief Road Lincolnshire Jubilee Way from West Street to East Street. Opened in 1977 per a Grantham Journal article of 27 August 1982.
1977 A174 Marske-by-the-Sea Bypass Yorkshire The 2.75 mile road from Kirkleatham Bypass to A1085 Marske Road was opened on 9 December 1977 by W.T. Rodgers, Secretary of State for Transport. Contractor was A. Monk & Co. Ltd..
1977 A2 Dover Eastern Bypass Kent Jubilee Way. The 7 mile road from Lydden Hill Junction to Eastern Docks Roundabout was opened by March 1977 by Peter Rees, MP. It originally curled out over the sea from the dock entrance on a viaduct. Cost 8.42 million.
1977 A31 Ringwood Bypass upgrade and extension Hampshire Eastwards extension from Southampton Road to Poulner Hill and dualling of the original bypass which had opened in 1938. Completed in 1977 per the Ringwood Conservation Appraisal of October 2003. Included the B3347 Mansfield Road link from Salisbury Road Junction south to Christchurch Road bypassing the town centre.
1977 A34 Steventon, Rowstock and Chilton Bypass Berkshire Abingdon Bypass Stage 2: Steventon Road south of Drayton (now B4017) to just south of Chilton. The 6 mile dual carriageway was opened on 16 November 1977 by Lord Porchester, Chairman of South East Planning Council. Completed 5 months ahead of schedule. Contractor Sir Alfred McAlpine (Southern) Ltd., cost £7.5 million.
1977 A38 Little Eaton - Holbrook Derbyshire Little Eaton Bypass. The 3 mile section opened on 3 October 1977. Cost £4.5 million.
1977 A38 Holbrook - Alfreton Derbyshire Ripley & Swanwick Bypass. The 7 mile section opened on 21 October 1977. Cost £12.5 million.
1977 A38 Kennford - M5 J31 Pearce's Hill Devon The 1 mile dual carriageway connection to M5 was opened along with the motorway which opened on 3 May 1977 per the Gazette.
1977 A39 St Columb Bypass Cornwall Opened 3 June 1977. 2.5 miles. Contractor E. Thomas & Co., anticipated cost in 1975 £1.22 million. The A3059 link road and southern bypass was planned at the same time.
1977 A303 A37 Ilchester Bypass Somerset The 4.5 mile road opened on 28 March 1977. It was dual carriageway except for 0.7 mile at the eastern end where the former A372 was used. Contractor was Cementation Construction, tender price £5,481,000.
1977 A303 , A357 , A371 Wincanton Bypass Somerset The 4 mile dual carriageway from Witherleigh Farm, Dancing Cross to Leigh Common also bypassed Holton and Bayford. The scheme included a link road between A357 at Anchor Corner and A371 at Holbrook, forming a western bypass, and a connection to Lawrence Hill. The 2 mile first stage west of the town's Hawkers Bridge Interchange was opened on 26 January 1977. The east section was to open shortly afterwards. Contractor was Mears Construction, tender cost £5.05 million.
1977 A40 Witney Bypass Oxfordshire Opened on 19 April 1977 by William Rodgers, Minister of Transport (per ATV Today broadcast).
1977 A45 Cambridge Cambridgeshire Cambridge Northern Bypass originally as A45, later renumbered as A428 and A14 in 1990's
1977 A420 Botley and Cumnor Hill Bypass Berkshire Opened on 22 August 1977 by John Francis, Chairman of Oxfordshire County Council per an ATV Today report.
1977 A69 Corbridge and Hexham Bypass Northumberland The 8.5 mile road was opened on 7 February 1977 by Geoffrey Rippon, M.P. for Hexham. It took 2 years to build and cost more than £8 million.
1977 A9 Longman Roundabout to Bogbain Inverness-shire Opened 12th November 1977. Included Raigmore Interchange
1977 A9 Birnam - Guay Perthshire Birnam & Dunkeld Bypass
1977 A9 Luncarty Perthshire Luncarty bypass
1978 M18 A1(M) Wadworth - West Moor, Armthorpe Yorkshire The 8 miles from J2 to J4 was to be opened on 15 December 1978 by William Rodgers, Transport Secretary, to complete the M18 from M1 to M62. J2 Wadworth Interchange with A1(M) was completed by the addition of the M18 upper level.
1978 M27 Hedge End - Windhover Hampshire The 1.5 miles from J7 to J8 was opened on 1 February 1978 per The Gazette.
1978 M66 Heap Bridge, Bury to Edenfield Lancashire Bury Easterly Bypass: North section.The 5.9 mile northwards from J2 A58 Heap Bridge to A56 at Edenfield opened on 26 May 1978 per The Gazette.
1978 M67 Denton - Hattersley Cheshire Hyde Bypass
1978 M85 Perth Perthshire Former M85, now mainline of M90
1978 M90 Perth Perthshire Extended from J10 to A9, now spur of M90 to the west of Perth
1978 M181 M180 - Scunthorpe Lincolnshire Entire Motorway
1978 A15 Barton Upon Humber - M180 Lincolnshire Expressway
1978 A16 Boston Inner Relief Road Lincolnshire John Adams Way (named after the 2nd President of U.S.A.). The 0.75 mile dual carriageway opened without ceremony on 2 May 1978 per a 40th Anniversary article by Lincolnshireworld. Contractor was Sheldon Contracting Co. Ltd. of Solihull, tender price £624,500, although this was exceeded. Haven Bridge had opened in July 1966 linking High Street to South Street. It was widened in July 1973.
1978 A16 Spilsby Bypass Lincolnshire Under construction on the 1977 Philips Road Atlas and complete on the 1978 edition. It may have opened in 1977.
1978 A120 Bishop's Stortford Northern Bypass Hertfordshire • Essex The 2.3 mile single carriageway from Stansted Road to Hadham Road was opened on 24 August 1978 by Major Arthur Hughes, Chairman of Hertfordshire County Council to complete the Northern Bypass. It included a 170 metre five span viaduct across the River Stort and adjacent railway line. Cost £2.5 million.
1978 A30 Alphington - Whiddon Down Devon Tedburn St Mary & Crockenwell Bypass
1978 A34 Stafford Inner Relief Road Staffordshire Queensway. The dual carriageway was officially opened on 12 June 1978 by Cyril Finney, Staffordshire County Council Highways Committee Chairman. Even he admitted he was surprised by the forest of traffic lights, but the alternative was pedestrian subways which would never have got through. There was a cartoon of a coachload of tourists coming to see the “illuminations”! Parts of the road were in use earlier. Contractor was Balfour Beatty Construction Ltd., contract cost £3 million, total cost £6.5 million.
1978 A38 Quedgeley Bypass Gloucestershire Dual carriageway. Opened on 13 April 1978 per ATV Today clip held by MACE Archive. Cost £2.5 million
1978 A48
St Mellons - Rumney Monmouthshire St Mellons & Rumney Bypass & Southern Way
1978 A441 Redditch: Alvechurch Highway Worcestershire • Warwickshire The 3.3 mile north - south road through central Redditch from Birmingham Road to Rough Hill Drive was opened on 23 January 1978 by J.H.T. Cotterill, Hereford and Worcester County Council Councillor. Dual carriageway apart from 0.2 mile at north end. Contractor was Galliford and Sons Ltd. of Wolvey, tender price £6 million (then their largest contract), total cost £8 million.
1978 A64 Tadcaster Bypass Yorkshire The 5.5 mile dual carriageway opened in August 1978.
1978 A64 Malton and Norton Bypass Yorkshire Opened 1978 per Hansard. The Department of Transport required the use of wet mix for the road pavement despite reservations by the Regional office, and previous problems that had seen its use banned on motorways in 1969 and dual carriageways in 1976. It needed remedial work in 1985 - 88 costing £3.1 million.
1978 A617 Chesterfield - M1 Link Road Derbyshire Stage 2: 1.5 miles from Winsick to Chesterfield, the Hasland Bypass, was opened on 15 September 1978 per an ATV Today report. Dual carriageway. Forecast cost £1.17 million.
1978 A624 Hayfield Relief Road Derbyshire Opened on 19 December 1978.
1978 A96 Huntly bypass Aberdeenshire The 2.5 mile single carriageway road was opened on 22 September 1978 with no ceremony.
1979 M11 Bishop's Stortford - Stump Cross Hertfordshire • Essex • Cambridgeshire The 15 mile section from J8 Birchanger Green to J9 and the 0.95 mile spur to Stump Cross was opened on 28 November 1979 by Kenneth Clarke, Parliamentary Secretary for Transport.
1979 M25 A21 Chevening - A22 Godstone Kent • Surrey The 9 mile westwards extension between J5 and J6 was to be opened on 14 November 1979 per The Gazette. There is a 19 November 1979 report in the Marylebone Mercury that it had been opened “last week” by Norman Fowler, Minister of Transport. Contractors were Gleeson and Bovis. There was a temporary junction with A21 Sevenoaks Bypass at Chevening since the freeflow junction was still under construction by Cementation Construction. The M25 connections to A21 were to be opened on 30 July 1980 per The Gazette.
1979 A1(M) Hatfield - South Mimms Hertfordshire • Middlesex 4.4 miles from J2 to J1 opened 1 May 1979 per The Gazette. It incorporated the earlier 1975 dual carriageway section of A1 from just north of B556 (former A111) to J1 Bignells Corner Interchange.
1979 A3(M) Horndean - Havant Bypass, Bedhampton Hampshire Horndean and Waterlooville Bypass. The 5.3 miles from J1 to A27 Havant Bypass was opened on 20 December 1979 perThe Gazette.
1979 A1 Redhouse Yorkshire Redhouse Junction Improvement
1979 A10 Downham Market Eastern Bypass Norfolk Also bypassed Denver and Wimbotsham. Opened in December 1979. Part of the 11 mile improvement scheme from Southery to South Runcton which was fully opened on 16 June 1980. Single carriageway. Contractor was Mears Construction.
1979 A120, A130 Great Dunmow Southern Bypass Essex The first bypass was to open on 27 November 1979. Contractor was W.C. French. Later renumbered B1256 when the second bypass was opened. It also included an A130 spur, this was also later renumbered B1256.
1979 A141 March Bypass Cambridgeshire The 3 mile road from Wisbech Road to Mill Hill Roundabout, Wimblington Road was opened on 10 April 1979 by Stanley Hardwick, Chairman of Cambridgeshire Highways Committee. The section south of Burrowmoor Road had opened some months previously. Cost £1.4 million. A northern extension, a bridge to bypass the level crossing, was opened on 17 July 1981 by Clement Freud, MP for Isle of Ely. Contractor was Roadworks (1952) Ltd. of Ipswich, cost £1.1 million.
1979 A34 Newbury North/South Relief Road Extension Berkshire Sandleford Link Road. 1 mile dual carriageway from St John's Road/ Queens Road to Newtown Road (Monks Lane junction). Opened 11 April 1979 (apart from the roundabout access to St John's Road which opened in July 1979). Cost £1.6 million. Renumbered A339 when Newbury Bypass opened in 1998.
1979 A34 Beedon Bypass Berkshire The 3.7 mile dual carriageway between Beedon Interchange and M4 Chieveley was opened on 14 September 1979 by Lieut-Col. Richard Watt, Chairman of Berkshire County Council. Cost £3 million. It took trade away from Don's Transport Cafe in the village, described as the only traditional transport cafe between Southampton and the Midlands. The original contractor, Mears Construction Ltd. stopped trading due to debts and Edmund Nuttall completed the work. Cost £3.7 million.
1979 A420 , A417 Faringdon Bypass Berkshire The 3 mile single carriageway road was opened on 12 July 1979 by Colonel Sir John Thompson, Lord Lieutenant of Oxfordshire. It also included a link to the town along Park Road (A417). Cost £1.2 million.
1979 A604 Bar Hill - Huntingdon Huntingdonshire • Cambridgeshire Later renumbered as A14 in 1994
1979 A75 Newton Stewart Bypass Kirkcudbrightshire • Wigtownshire Opened at the end of January 1979. Cost £1.5 million.
1979 A9 Crubenmore - Kingussie Inverness-shire Newtonmore & Kingussie Bypass
1979 A9 Findon-Arduille Cromartyshire Opening of Cromarty Bridge
1979 A9 Drumochter summit to Calvine Inverness-shire Construction of split level dual carriageway and temporary tie in at Calvine
1979 A9 Dalmagarry to Bogbain Inverness-shire Moy and Daviot Bypass
1979 A9 Avielochan to Slochd Inverness-shire Carrbridge bypass
1979 A947 Stoneywood Bypass Aberdeenshire The 1 mile road from Market Street to A96 Auchmill Road (later Bucksburn Roundabout) was due to be fully opened in the next week per the Aberdeen Press of 1 September 1979. The northern end had been opened some weeks before. It included a short stretch of dual carriageway over the railway bridge. Contractor was Grampian Regional Council, estimated cost £963,000.

Other changes in 1970s

  • A38 Cullompton bypass swallowed up by M5.
  • Kyle of Lochalsh to Toscaig ferry route withdrawn following completion of Applecross coast road.
  • Completion of the reclassification of all the Republic of Ireland's roads.

Network changes - 1970s
Historical Information
1922 Road Lists Class IZone 1 • Zone 2 • Zone 3 • Zone 4 • Zone 5 • Zone 6 • Zone 7 • Zone 8 • Zone 9 • Northern Ireland
1922 Road Lists Class IIZone 1 • Zone 2 • Zone 3 • Zone 4 • Zone 5 • Zone 6 • Zone 7 • Zone 8 • Zone 9 • Northern Ireland
1935 Road numbering revisionZone 1 • Zone 2 • Zone 3 • Zone 4 • Zone 5 • Zone 6 • Zone 7 • Zone 8 • Zone 9
Republic of Ireland1977 Road Lists
Mass renumbering schemes1922 Draft Road Lists • 1924 A1 Renumbering • 1920s South Buckinghamshire Renumbering • 1933 A30 Renumbering • 1933 Scotland Renumbering Proposals • 1934 A82 Renumbering • Tyneside Renumberings • Motorway linked Renumberings • Republic of Ireland T and L roads
Network Changes1700-1799 • 1800-1899 • 1900-1909 • 1910-1919 • 1920-1929 • 1930-1939 • 1940-1949 • 1950-1959 • 1960-1969 • 1970-1979 • 1980-1989 • 1990-1999 • 2000-2009 • 2010-2019 • 2020-2029

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