The A5187 forms the western part of the Stafford inner ring road and is a non-primary route. Unlike the eastern (primary) section of the ring road, a 1970s-built dual carriageway that carries the A34 around the town centre, the A5187 is made up of pre-existing roads and is single-carriageway throughout. The A5187 number is not shown on signs and indeed most maps claim it to be a spur of the A518. However, Staffordshire County Council indicates the road's correct number in its documentation.
The route starts at a light controlled T-junction on the A518 Newport Road and heads northwards along Station Road in front of (not surprisingly) Stafford railway station. The road soon bends right at a mini roundabout to cross the River Sow as Victoria Street before immediately turning left at another mini roundabout and heading up Tenterbanks past Stafford College on one side and Victoria Park on the other. We go straight on at the next roundabout, passing the old windmill that has long since lost its sails. The final section of the road is in a northeasterly direction as Chell Road past the big Sainsbury's before ending on the massive Gaol Square gyratory where it meets the A34.