|Distance:||11.2 miles (18 km)|
|Meets:||A540, A5137, B5138, A552, A5027, B5139, M53, A553, A554, B5477, B5145, A5088, B5142, A5028, B5145, B5144|
|Former Number(s):||A5028, B5142, B5144|
|Old route now:||B5477|
|Route outline (key)|
The A551 is an L-shaped road on the Wirral.
Gayton – Seacombe
The road starts at a roundabout on the A540 and heads northeastwards. The A5137 (former B5137) to Bebington turns off to the right almost immediately; until the completion of the M53 this was the way to get into Wallasey without going through the centre of Birkenhead.
We pass through the outskirts of Heswall, then by way of Barnston, Thingwall (probably the place where the Wirral Viking Council met – "thing" is the Norse word for parliament), Woodchurch (where we meet the A552), Arrowe Park hospital, Upton (A5027), the slightly pointless M53 spur at junction 2A, and Moreton (A553) to the coast. The original route zigzagged along the A553 and past Leasowe station.
Here the road makes a 90° right turn, passing Leasowe and crossing the A554 at a GSJ. Originally the road went up to New Brighton from here, but when the A554 was extended in the 1970s to bypass the final part of the A551, its route was changed to follow the course of a B road through Liscard, the A5028 further to the south becoming the B5145. Strangely, the numbering on the last section (Borough Road) to the A554 was left unchanged, so the A551 ends at a crossroads where each branch has a different number: A551, A5028, B5144, B5145.
Original Author(s): Adrian Bailey