|To:||Land's End (SW348250)|
|Distance:||284 miles (457 km)|
|Meets:||M3, M5, M25, A4, A33, A34, A35, A36, A37, A38, A39, A303, A350, A386, A390, A391, A392, A394, A395|
|Former Number(s):||A33, A341, B3313, B3379|
|Old route now:||A3047, A343, A389, B3301, B3400|
|Route outline (key)|
The A30 is the third longest A-road in Britain, yet for about half its length it's non-primary - playing second fiddle first to the M3 and then to the A303. However, it is a lifeline to the people of Cornwall as well as Central and Western Devon, as for most of its route between Honiton and Penzance it is a mostly grade-separated dual carriageway.
Hounslow - Popham
These sections were all downgraded when the M3 became the main route to Southampton instead of the A30 and A33.
Bullington Cross - Upottery
Between the reclassification of the Basingstoke bypass to Popham, and the inauguration of the A303 as the main trunk route to the South West, these sections were still important roads, but since the A303 had become better quality, these sections have been largely superseded, providing mainly for local traffic between the towns and villages it lies on.
- A30/Popham - Sutton Scotney
- A30/Bullington Cross - Salisbury
- A30/Salisbury - Wilton
- A30/Wilton - Shaftesbury
- A30/Shaftesbury - Yeovil
- A30/Yeovil - Upottery
Upottery - Lands End
From Upottery, the A30 takes over from the A303, becoming the main trunk route to the far South West, and is mostly a grade separated dual carriageway from Honiton to Camborne, and only has four sections between Upottery and Penzance that are not dual carriageway.
- A30/Upottery - Exeter
- A30/Exeter - Okehampton
- A30/Okehampton - Launceston
- A30/Launceston - Bodmin
- A30/Bodmin - Redruth
- A30/Redruth - Penzance
- A30/Penzance - Lands End
The A30 has seen many improvements over the years and they seem set to continue as the A30 nears the 100th anniversary of its classification and its first bypass.
The A30 has been an important route for traffic since the days of coaching in the 18th century, though the modern route deviates significantly from the historic route in several key places.
1933 saw the first mass renumbering of a major road in Britain, when the A30 was routed down to Stockbridge, instead of through Andover. Nothing on this scale has been done since the 1935 Renumberings, which was to try and help map makers, as well as help people use road numbers for directions. This also created the A303, which now takes the trunk route status all of the way to Upottery.