|Location Map ( geo)|
|From:||Piccadilly Circus (TQ294806)|
|To:||Camden Town (TQ288838)|
|Distance:||2.5 miles (4 km)|
|Meets:||A4, A401, B406, A40, A5204, A501, B506, A5205, A503, A400, A502|
|Route outline (key)|
The A4201 is a north-south A-road in central London.
The route starts at Piccadilly Circus and heads west along Regent Street, before the road's terraces bear round to the right to take us northwards. At Oxford Circus, a simple signalised crossroads, we cross the A40 Oxford Street and soon cross the A5204, again at lights. Some maps claim that the parallel Great Portland Street is also numbered A4201 between the A40 and the A5204; there appears to be no reason why this should be so.
The focus of northbound travel along Regent Street is All Souls Langham Place, which is visible for some time until we finally reach the church just after crossing the A5204. We bear round to the left, also passing the BBC's Broadcasting House before travelling along the wide Portland Place to a T-junction on Park Crescent. The A4201 forms both branches of this road, which reach adjacent sets of traffic lights on the A501.
There is now a multiplex with the A501 for one block east before the road reappears as Albany Street, which is initially one-way northbound. Southbound traffic following the A4201 detours east onto Osnaburgh Street and crosses the A501 before looping around Great Portland Street station to rejoin the A501 from the south.
Albany Street soon becomes two-way and we pass the road's army barracks before bearing right at traffic lights to cross the Gloucester Gate Bridge (which crossed a now-dry branch of the Regents Canal) and meet the A5205 at traffic lights. At the next set of lights we meet the A503 and cross the West Coast Main Line. Here the road becomes one-way (the A503 takes traffic the other way). The A4201 continues along the Parkway to end at a complicated signalised junction with the northbound Camden High Street (A400 and A502).
In 1922, the A4201 went only as far as Oxford Street – most of the road north of there was the B505, although that went along Great Portland Street rather than Portland Place so did not have to zigzag across the A501. There is evidence that the A4201 also ran along Great Portland Street at one time.