|Location Map ( geo)|
|Distance:||13 miles (20.9 km)|
|Meets:||A332, M4, M40, A40, A413, A416, A404|
|Former Number(s):||B473, B472, A413|
|Route outline (key)|
The A355 is, unexpectedly, a north-south road in east Buckinghamshire.
Eton - Slough
We begin, just north of the Thames, at a fork junction where the A332 TOTSOs to aim for the centre of Slough. We, taking the mainline, quickly end up at M4 junction 6. From here, we head northwards as dual carriageway through Slough, crossing the A4, which is also dual, at a signalised crossroads.
Slough - Beaconsfield
North of the A4, the A355 goes through almost continuous urban area for several miles. Initially, the road is flanked with service roads, and lined with commercial properties. Gradually this fades out, with residential buildings becoming dominant, and then the only buildings. As we head out from Slough, the houses become more palatial, and when we reach Farnham Common, they are much more set back and grand looking. In Farnham Common, we meet a spur of the B416. On leaving Farnham Common, the road becomes semi-rural and continues as we head north.
As we approach Beaconsfield services, the road becomes D2 and then D3 north of Burnham Lane and we have a signalised junction for the services (and Beaconsfield SCYOB FC). We then meet the M40 at its junction 2 - a signalised (since the services opened) roundabout with at least three lanes all the way around. The dual carriageway A355 continues, as a primary route, as far as the rather large Pyebush Roundabout with the A40, where we turn left, multiplexing with the A40 for a couple of hundred metres before turning right just before Beaconsfield's old town centre.
Beaconsfield - Amersham
From the A40, we head along the eastern edge of Beaconsfield, and once past the junction with Seer Green road, the urban area ends. We continue north, past Coleshill with its water tower next to the road, and then head down Gore Hill to Amersham. There is an escape lane heading north/down, and a crawler lane heading south/up this hill. We meet the A413 bypass at a roundabout, and lose our primary status, and then finish heading down the hill, to TOTSO at a roundabout with the old A413, outside Amersham's very large Tesco store. Turning right, we meet the A416 at a small roundabout and then head up Chequers Hill to end on a roundabout with the A413 and A404.
The current incarnation of the A355 came into existence with the construction of the A332 Windsor bypass and the two motorways in this area.
In 1922 what is now the A355 did exist as a classified road, albeit Class II and entirely north of the A4: it thus received an appropriate number as the B473 (although the road from Beaconsfield to Amersham was renumbered B472 between 1925 and 1935 when it got its original number back).
When the M4 Slough Bypass was built in 1963 a new link road was constructed between the A4 and J6 (and subsequently extended to the new A332 Windsor and Eton Relief Road in 1966). As this was wholly south of the A4 it was given a 3-zone number, becoming the A355.
By the mid-1970s the short A355 had been extended north to Amersham along the ex-B473, meeting the M40 en route. Its final extension was along the original line of the A413 in the town when that road was rerouted onto the bypass.
A section of the A355 still under construction, between the Pyebush Roundabout and the M40, can be seen in an episode of the television series The Persuaders (filmed in 1970 and broadcast a year later). In "The Gold Napoleon" a short stretch of the road doubles as an Italian autostrada. The evident earthworks and new lighting columns minus lanterns betray the road's incomplete state.
|Image||Name||Classified Road(s)||Grid Reference||More Info||Map|
|Tesco's Roundabout||SU960971||Large Roundabout by the Tesco Superstore, Amersham|