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Location Map ( geo)
Cameraicon.png View gallery (21)
From:  Newby Bridge (SD371861)
To:  Penrith (NY513303)
Via:  Windermere, Patterdale, Glenridding
Distance:  34.3 miles (55.2 km)
Meets:  A590, A5074, A591, A5091, A66, A6, M6
Former Number(s):  B5320, B5306, A594
Old route now:  B5360, A5074, B5320
Primary Destinations
Highway Authorities

Westmorland and Furness

Traditional Counties

Cumberland • Lancashire • Westmorland

Route outline (key)
A592 Newby Bridge - Stainton
(A66) Stainton - Skirsgill
A592 Skirsgill - Penrith
A592 Waterfoot - Eamont Bridge


The A592 is probably one of the Lake District's most scenic routes and, compared to its neighbour the A591, much quieter.

Section 1: Newby Bridge - Windermere

Blake Holme

The A592 starts at the southern (Lancashire) end of Windermere at a roundabout junction with the A590 in the village of Newby Bridge, then proceeds along the eastern shore of the lake. This stretch is relatively narrow (a common theme for the A592!), and prone to flooding when the lake is at higher levels. The B5285 and B5284 are encountered entering Bowness; the B5285 heads to the cross-Windermere ferry for Near Sawrey (where Beatrix Potter lived), Hawkshead and Coniston, whilst the B5284 (like the B5360 a few miles to the south) provides a link to the A5074 towards the A590 at Levens (and hence Kendal).

We come right up to the lakeshore at the heart of the touristy parts of Bowness Bay, where the Winderemere Steamers head north to Ambelside or south back down to Lakeside. But here we head up through the bustling streets of Bowness town centre towards a cannoning junction with the A5074 from Levens. The A5074 continuest as the main road up to Windermere town itself, while the A592 (Rayrigg Road) makes it way back towards the lakeside as a bypass avoiding the town of Windermere.

The road's original route through Bowness ran along what is now the B5360 and A5074 into the centre of town to rejoin its current route north along Rayrigg Road.

Section 2: Windermere - Glenridding

Kirkstone Pass Inn

At the end of this bypass past the Steamboat Museum we cross the A591 at a mini-roundabout and start the climb up Kirkstone Pass. Initially the A592 follows the route of the Trout Beck river up a relatively quiet valley, before climbing up past Town End towards Kirkstone Pass proper.

At the top of the pass (1489 feet) is a pub and here we have a junction with the very steep unclassified road from Ambleside appropriately named "The Struggle". The fell immediately above us to the left is Red Screes, at 2546 feet - the walk up to here form Kirkstone Pass is steep but relatively short, and the Pass offers a significant 'leg-up' for walkers wanting a shorter route to a a proper Lakeland peak. The 'Kirk Stone' itself is on the western side of the pass, a glacial erratic - that is to say, a boulder left abandoned here by retreating ice at the end of the ice age.

Once down the pass we meet the second of the three lakes along the A592 - Brothers Water, one of the smaller waters and meres in the Lake District, though there is evidence that this lake was once much larger and may have once been the southern part of Ullswater. The valley widens out alogn the former lake-bed, and the road takes the opportunity to cross from east to west of the valley floor, in advance of Ullswater whose western bank is much more passable than its eastern. We reach the almost continuous villages of Patterdale and Glenridding, full of hotels, tourist shops and guesthouses. At Glenridding we meet England's second largest and probably loveliest lake - Ullswater. Glenridding is also one of the landing stages of the Ullswater steamer.

Section 3: Glenridding - Waterfoot


After Glenridding the road continues mainly along the lake shore passing Aira Force at the junction with the A5091, which connects to the A66 at Troutbeck. I've never understood why the A5091 should merit an A number when it is so clearly a B-standard road. The road leaves the lake shore for a while to pass through the scattered settlement of Watermillock.

A couple of miles on from Watermillock and the A592 changes course completely but this was not always so.

Originally the road number carried on to Pooley Bridge (the village at the northern end of Ullswater) and through the villages of Tirril and Yanwath to meet the A6 at Eamont Bridge (next to the ancient earthwork known as Arthurs Round Table). The road from Pooley to Penrith was originally unclassified and later became the B5320. When the M6 Penrith Bypass was opened in 1968 the B5320 and A592 swapped numbers, although priorities at the junction of the roads didn't change, so now there is a TOTSO junction here.

Section 4: Waterfoot - Penrith

The "new" course of the A592 runs past the stately home of Dalemain and joins the A66 Stainton-Redhills bypass at the Slapestones or Rheged roundabout. From here to M6 J40 (Skirsgill) the A66 and A592 multiplex, although the old B5320 took a different route through the hamlet of Redhills.

At J40 the A592 resurrects itself as the main road into Penrith, although traffic wanting the town-centre car parks is directed to go along the A66 for another mile and enter the town via Bridge Lane (A6).

Brunswick Road, Penrith

The A592 now becomes Ullswater Road. This is not the most attractive entrance to Penrith, as you pass mainly retail units (Aldi, Halfords, B&Q) till you get to the Railway Station and McDonalds opposite the town's castle. At the roundabout near the castle you join Penrith's one way system, whose road numbering history is very chequered.

Before the M6 was built, Ullswater Road was part of the B5320, Castlegate and Cromwell Road were part of the A594 whilst Brunswick Road was the whole of the B5306.

After the coming of the M6, Castlegate, Cromwell Road and Brunswick Road all became one-way streets and were numbered as parts of the A592, although curiously some maps produced just after the motorway was opened showed that Ullswater Road and Castlegate were numbered B5320 making this a duplicate of the road number from Pooley Bridge to Eamont Bridge.

From 1996, Brunswick Road became two-way and was renumbered at least on road signs as the A6. Current signs, however, don't give it a number at all. Castlegate remained one way and so could be either road; the OS think it's the A592.

Official notifications of road closures, etc. printed in the local papers state that Brunswick Road and Castlegate are indeed officially the A592 while the A6 still runs through the centre of Penrith, albeit one-way southbound.

Original Author(s): Carl Ryding

Related Pictures
View gallery (21)
Troutbeck- Jesus Church - Geograph - 919649.jpgA592 Kirkstone Pass - Coppermine - 17344.JPGA592 Kirkstone Pass, Cumbria - Coppermine - 17341.JPG19801011 - Bowness 54.3626644N 2.9225309W.jpgA5074 Junction with B5360 at Blackwell - Geograph - 5274715.jpg
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