|Distance:||28.4 miles (45.7 km)|
|Meets:||A631, B1403, B1396, M180, A18, B1392, A614, M62|
|Old route now:||A614|
|Route outline (key)|
The A161 is a largely rural A-road in the east of England.
Beckingham – Goole
The road begins at a roundabout at the western end of the A631 Beckingham bypass and heads north, bypassing the village to the west. Like other roads in flat, estuarine country there are lots of bends and meanders to accommodate various waterways. We cross the Isle of Axholme which is very reminiscent of the Fens and pass through the villages of Misterton, Haxey and Burnham before arriving at Epworth, the birthplace of John and Charles Wesley, the founders of Methodism.
After that there is pretty much more of the same. Crossing the M180 at junction 2 we go into even flatter land in the area of the Humber. After passing through Crowle and Eastoft we reach the River Ouse (one of the Humber's tributaries) at Swinefleet and run alongside it upstream into Goole. The road runs round the town on a new relief road, Tom Pudding Way, to join the A614 at its interchange with the M62.
Originally the A161 started on the A18 to the south of Crowle and headed north along its current route to Goole. At that time it was the only Class I road in the town and so it then continued westwards via Rawcliffe to end on the original route of the A614 near East Cowick.
By 1932 the A161 had been extended south across the Isle of Axholme to Beckingham, taking on the whole of the B1187 in the process.
After being lengthened, the road was then shortened in 1935. The A614 was diverted at its northern end to Howden (and beyond) rather than Selby, thus taking over the whole of the A161 west of Goole. Bypasses aside, this is the current route of the road.