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Currently a medium-length road in central Cornwall, the A389 was once much longer.

Location Map ( geo)
Cameraicon.png View gallery (8)
From:  Padstow (SW913753)
To:  Lanivet (SX030631)
Via:  Bodmin
Distance:  18.5 miles (29.8 km)
Meets:  B3276, B3274, A39, B3314, B3266, A30, A38, A391
Former Number(s):  B3274, B3276, B3267, A30, A38
Old route now:  A38, A374
Primary Destinations
Highway Authorities


Traditional Counties


Route outline (key)
A389 Padstow - Wadebridge Bypass
(A39) Wadebridge Bypass
A389 Wadebridge Bypass - Lanivet
A389 Spurs in Bodmin
A389 Bodmin - Plymouth


The road starts in Padstow, or rather from a B road (the B3276) on the western edge of town. The road heads south through the outskirts and quickly reaches open country. Shortly, a left turn is necessary at a classic TOTSO. This is evidence of the road's former B road status in the next section. Straight on becomes the B3274 - this is the signposted route to Wadebridge and the A39 for HGVs. The B3274 is actually the better road, although much further to go round if heading up county.

The problem on the A389 is reached in a mile or so; the road narrows as it drops down into the village of Little Petherick. There is a single-track crossing of a stream on a humped-backed bridge. This was formerly light-controlled but now has priority for A39 bound traffic. Across the stream there is a quite steep and narrow two-lane hill which leads up to the village of St Issey.

After a few miles it reaches the A39Atlantic Highway”. Here the road vanishes as the junior partner in a multiplex. Formerly the A389 departed the A39 at a mini roundabout, just after the bridge in Wadebridge. However, at the same time as the A39 Wadebridge bypass was built, the A389 was given its own bypass round the back of Egloshayle. So lately the A39/A389 multiplex comes to an end at a 1992-built roundabout to the east of town. This is also the junction with the B3314.

The A389 Egloshayle by-pass is single carriageway but straight and wide for the next two miles. It is one of the few places where overtaking is possible on the whole route. Soon the road joins its old alignment when the old route (now unclassified) comes out at a T-junction on the right. The section ahead is usually slow going all the way to Bodmin as there are many bends.

Pendavey Hill, Sladesbridge

After about four miles. the B3266 joins at T-junction on the left. A couple of further miles along the road bends and drops down to a crossing of the River Camel and on the way up the hill over the tracks of a former railway line which is a grounding threat for longer vehicles.

Shortly thereafter was a right turn down an unclassified road that was signposted as a route to cut the corner and join the A30 westbound. This is now a no-through route for motor vehicles and just up the road is a newer roundabout from which a new link road joins that original unclassified road. This is still signed as the suggested route to Innis Downs. This area of Bodmin has much new residential development and this corner-cut goes right through part of the development. Most vehicles would, I assume, use this instead of following the A389. It was closed for six months in 2023 and traffic queued for half-an-hour up to Bodmin at peak periods. It would be hoped the authority does not try to limit use of this link road in future. If you do stay on the road, it passes an industrial estate on the outskirts of Bodmin. Then the road rises to go into a junction at a double mini-roundabout with a local road and the A389 in two alternate directions (other than the third from which we have arrived). This arrangement came about when the A30 was by-passed away from Bodmin and the A389 took over the number.

Firstly, following the route to the right: Soon the town environs are left behind and after a couple of miles the short cut previously mentioned joins from the right. Thereafter the road is fairly straight and wide until it goes through Lanivet and ends at the A30/A391 junction at the Innis Downs Roundabout. Following the opening of the new dual carriageway A30 Goss Moor bypass, this is now a much smaller roundabout than before, part of a dumbbell interchange with the new dualled road going underneath.

Going back to the other spur of the A389: Turning left takes the road right through the centre of Bodmin. There are no junctions with major roads, but there are many vehicles at peak times annd Bodmin is one of the few Cornish towns with a "rush-hour" and traffic can be very slow at times.

The only junction in town with a classified road is at a shared-space type roundabout with the B3268, which goes to Lostwithiel. Turning left at this roundabout and the edge of town is soon reached. Here there is a another roundabout at which all-three directions are the A389. Taking the left turn this is signposted for the A30. After somewhat less than a mile the A38 arrives at a T-junction on the right for its last mile to end the A389 and make the link to the A30 eastbound. This is a TOTSO for the A38 and so terminates this spur. Going back to the roundabout and taking the right turn, signposted for the A38, there is shortly another roundabout for an out-of-town superstore and after a further mile, it reaches the A38 again, much nearer its junction with the A30 westbound slips. This is another TOTSO for the A38 and again terminates the A389 spur. So the road has three termini at its southern end.


In the 1922 Road Lists the A389 ran from the A38 in Plymouth, across the Torpoint Ferry, to the A30 at Bodmin, multiplexing with the A390 through Liskeard and Dobwalls. In the early 1930s it was extended to Padstow along the B3267, B3276 and B3274 (and a multiplex along the A39.

In the 1935 Road numbering revision the A389 lost its original route to an extension of the A38. When Bodmin was bypassed more recently, the road regained part of its original route and also the route of the former A30 through the town, explaining its three end points in and around Bodmin.

Related Pictures
View gallery (8)
A389 Dunmere - Coppermine - 2599.jpgLittle Petherick - Geograph - 266686.jpgMount Charles - Geograph - 378818.jpgLane End - Geograph - 378819.jpgClocktower at Bodmin - Geograph - 64512.jpg
Other nearby roads
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A320 • A321 • A322 • A323 • A324 • A325 • A326 • A327 • A328 • A329 • A330 • A331 • A332 • A333 • A334 • A335 • A336 • A337 • A338 • A339
A340 • A341 • A342 • A343 • A344 • A345 • A346 • A347 • A348 • A349 • A350 • A351 • A352 • A353 • A354 • A355 • A356 • A357 • A358 • A359
A360 • A361 • A362 • A363 • A364 • A365 • A366 • A367 • A368 • A369 • A370 • A371 • A372 • A373 • A374 • A375 • A376 • A377 • A378 • A379
A380 • A381 • A382 • A383 • A384 • A385 • A386 • A387 • A388 • A389 • A390 • A391 • A392 • A393 • A394 • A395 • A396 • A397 • A398 • A399
St Peters Way  Motorways: A308(M) • A329(M)  Earlier Itineraries: A303 • A326 • A331 • A333 • A341 • A346 • A355 • A364 • A369 • A374 • A378 • A392 • A397

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