|From:||Old Catton (TG216116)|
|To:||Thorpe St Andrew (TG295085)|
|Distance:||5.8 miles (9.3 km)|
|Meets:||A140, A1402, B1150, A1151, B1140, A1242, A1194, A47, A1270|
|Former Number(s):||A1074, A47|
|Route outline (key)|
The A1042 forms part of the Norwich outer ring road.
The route starts at a complicated signalised junction to the north of the city centre, where it meets the A1402 and A140. From here it heads east, clockwise around the centre of Norwich. The road is a relatively wide S2 and largely residential, with few items of interest to capture the attention.
In New Sprowston we cross two roundabouts in quick succession: junctions with the radial B1150 and A1151. We now head southeastwards across Mousehold Heath, although the route remains urban in character – there is a retail park accessed from the next set of traffic lights. After becoming residential once more, the route meets the B1140 at a roundabout. Before the A1042 came into being, the road straight ahead (Harvey Lane) formed part of the Ring Road, but today it is unclassified and we turn off at ten o'clock, our route becoming a radial one for the first time.
We now head eastwards through the town of Thorpe St Andrew, essentially a suburb of Norwich but administratively separate. After crossing Thunder Lane at traffic lights we bear right onto the Ring Road and the road loses its residential status - we can see houses to either side but they are not accessible from this stretch of the A1042. At traffic lights opposite Sainsbury's we turn right, then left at the following mini-roundabout where we meet the A1242 from Thorpe town centre.
After going under a railway bridge we continue east, passing a business park, to reach the northern roundabout of a dumbbell GSJ with the A47 southern bypass. The A1042 ends here, in a complex junction which also gives access to the A1194 and A1270.
The Norwich outer ring road was built in the 1930s and when first opened bore the number A1074. By the 1970s. the whole loop had been renumbered A47, taking that road out of the city centre. However, as anyone who has driven along the A1042 will acknowledge, a more suitable bypass was required. This was completed to the south of the city in 1992, with the A47 rerouted that way and the old outer ring renumbered. Most of the eastern section became the A1042; the route also gained the Thorpe St Andrew ring road and was then extended east to meet the new bypass.