A1/Musselburgh - Central Edinburgh
|Location Map ( geo)|
|The Great North Road|
|To:||Central Edinburgh (NT257740)|
|Distance:||3.9 miles (6.3 km)|
|Meets:||A199, A1140, A900, A7, A8|
|Route outline (key)|
The final section of the A1 runs from Old Craighall Junction into the centre of Edinburgh. At Old Craighall, it meets the A720 bypass and loses its trunk road status. Soon after the speed limit reduces from 70 to 50. On the eastbound side, there is a LILO for Queen Margaret University's new Musselburgh campus.
Soon after is Newcraighall Junction, providing access to a station and park-and-ride and the retail park at Fort Kinnaird. That is the last grade separated junction. The road bears left and a roundabout lets you turn left to ASDA at the Jewel, a dead end for vehicles other than buses, or right to access commercial properties.
At Milton Link Junction, the A1 makes a left turn, cannoning off the A199, and becomes just another arterial road on its way into the Scottish capital. With four lanes - albeit two of them bus lanes - it runs ruler-straight through Willowbrae, partnering Portobello Park, into Duddingston. This part of Edinburgh is very green and leafy with only the odd set of traffic lights getting in the way through Northfield and as far as Jock's Lodge crossroads.
Left turn here again - the A1140 to the right heading back to Portobello - and the A1 can pick up "London Road" for the first time in a long time. Striking westwards again towards Meadowbank Stadium, the 1974 Commonwealth Games stadium but now sadly dilapidated, past a shopping park and up to Abbeyhill. Careful here, London Road straight on is the B1350 and the A1 bears left (again) on to Montrose Terrace.
And finally, a grand end for a grand road. The last three quarters of a mile from the head of Easter Road to Princes Street are quite unlike any other road in the city, or almost any city for that matter. Nestled under Calton Hill, the road threads a ribbon through hilly parkland, nestled on a plateau overlooking the south of the city. It feels like wild countryside, despite being sufficiently close to central Edinburgh that you can hear the hustle and bustle. The offices of the Scottish Government on Regent Road are impressively grand - even more so from the southern vista - and there is one last name change to Waterloo Place before the road picks up some classic Edinburgh tenemented neighbours, vaults Calton Road, and finally comes to an end outside the old General Post Office and Scottish Register House at East End Junction - the second hub of the road network.
1987: Musselburgh Bypass
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