|Walsall Ring Road|
|From:||Bescot, Walsall (SO999968)|
|To:||Bescot (circular) (SO999968)|
|Distance:||5.7 miles (9.2 km)|
|Meets:||A461, A4038, A454, A34, B4210, B4151, A4031|
|Route outline (key)|
The A4148 is the Walsall Ring Road. It contains the main town centre and inner areas of the town within it, unlike nearby places such as Wolverhampton which only contains the main city centre, making this ring road look considerably bigger. The route was first classified as the B4456 in the late 1920s and was then gradually renumbered A4148 in the 1960s, with the western side the final section to gain Class I status. There are now no classified roads within the loop.
For the purposes of this description we start at the southwest corner of the A4148 at a roundabout junction with the A461 where the A4148 TOTSOs in both directions. Clockwise the road heads north from here along the residential Bescot Road. It soon goes over a railway line and then meets the A4038 Darlaston Road at traffic lights just before going over the Walsall Canal. We continue between a hospital and light industry before the road becomes dual just before meeting the A454 at traffic lights. We TOTSO to the right.
The route remains D2 as we head east, and soon crosses the canal again before skirting a retail park. The A34 departs left soon afterwards, then the B4210 (on the original course of the A34) at the next set of lights. The latter road is one-way northbound here (with a contraflow bus lane); we meet the southbound carriageway soon afterwards by the Leather Museum. We then cross the Birmingham to Cannock railway line at a bridge which bears a plaque commemorating the completion of the ring road in 2009; in fact the road had already existed for some time but it was in that year that the northern section of the road gained its current alignment: there had been a one-way system between the A454 and the Leather Museum.
Shortly afterwards we meet a signalised crossroads (formerly a roundabout junction) with the A461 again, indicating that we are now notionally halfway around the loop. On the far side the road narrows to become S2 and passes Walsall Arboretum. The road name is now Broadway North; it will remain something similar for most of the rest of the route. There's a shallow but continuous bend round to the right and by the next roundabout (a junction with an unclassified road) we're heading due south. We continue as S4 after meeting the B4151, after which the A34 is met for a second time at a sort-of-longabout (which was formerly a double-roundabout), consisting of a small roundabout and a sort-of-crossroads, separated by a dual-carriageway so short that you would be forgiven for thinking it was another roundabout. Be careful here, as the lane selection on both the approach to and on the contraption can be pretty unforgiving.
The road name now becomes simply Broadway and it's back to S2 now. The road from now is quite... broad. We alternate between green areas and housing, after which the road decides it's had enough of roundabouts and so when we meet the A4031 it's at traffic lights. We continue westwards on Broadway West, which now has a hatched area - with a few central reservation crossings - in the centre of the road (wider than a lane), and pass to the north of a retail park which also contains Walsall FC's stadium. The road duals again in time to cross the railway line and we come to a roundabout soon afterwards, which is back where we started. The road bearing left (south) from here is the A461, which soon meets the M6 at J9.