|Length:||16.8 miles (27 km)|
|Meets:||A58, A657, A6110, A6120, A6177, A650, A6181, A641, A6177, A644, A58|
|Old route now:||B6157|
|Route outline (key)|
The A647 is one of the UK's several 'long way around' routes - as it starts on the A58 and ends on the same road 17 miles later (although the A58 itself is only a few miles shorter).
We begin at an exit from the Armley Gyratory, a very large roundabout to the west of Leeds City Centre, familiar to many. We commence as a 40MPH D2, gently climbing before narrowing to 30MPH S2 as we pass the prison and head towards the suburb of Armley itself. We pass through a crossroads and then shortly after become 40MPH D2.
The other side of the road at this point contains a high occupancy lane which appeared in 1998, which in this case means that one of the lanes running in towards Leeds is only available during rush hours to cars carrying more than one person. After a mile or two an exit for the A657 is signed. At this point the original route of the A647 carried straight on, through Bramley and Stanningley. This road is now unclassified for part of its length, before becoming an extension of the B6157.
We remain on the main road though, the 1970s Stanningley Bypass, and drop downhill, gaining an increase of allowable speed to 60MPH and GSJ D2. At the bottom of the hill, the A6110 Leeds Outer Ring Road merges in to our path. We gain primary status from it and continue for the next 2 to 3 miles of uphill road, also becoming a nice NSL. As we climb uphill we resemble very closely the sunken sections of the Inner Ring Road: we are in a trench with enclosed diamond junctions on the way.
Chris Marshall has a theory that this part of the road was meant to be one Leeds's proposed radial urban motorways. One more section of D2 and improvements to the 40mph section west of Armley would have completed this link.
At Pudsey, we encounter a roundabout where we need to take the first exit to the left (ahead is the A6120 which - eventually - bypasses Leeds to the north), rejoining the original route of the A647 now on a 40MPH urban D3, still gently climbing. There's another roundabout and then a large signalised gyratory at Thornbury, which manages to contain a public park in the middle. It looks as though the A647 has been diverted from its original route from here into the centre of Bradford but actually it has not. We need to slow down now as the D3 goes to be replaced by 30MPH S2 as we pass through an area full of shops on both sides of the road. We cross the A6177 Bradford Outer Ring and then begin to drop into the centre of Bradford. It's 30 all the way until we meet the Inner Ring. We cross at a set of traffic lights and end for now at a roundabout, at the side of the Telegraph and Argus Newspaper building. Most of the bottom of Bradford is in the process of being demolished as I write, so changes may well be afoot here. We seem to lose our identity at this point, only regaining it a mile later at the other side of the town centre. We leave the centre of Bradford at the side of the National Museum of Film, Photography and Television, and basically begin climbing out of Bradford for about 3 miles, on a 30 MPH limit S2 with shops either side, passing one of the country's premier curry houses. We pass over a set of double mini-roundabouts, a speciality in Bradford, outside the university buildings.
We then TOTSO right at a T-junction to meet the A6177 Outer Ring at a set of traffic lights just beyond. That road TOTSOs here and we turn left to multiplex with it until it TOTSOs again at another set of lights and the A647 regains its number by continuing ahead. We continue to climb out of the huge bowl that Bradford sits in, gaining a 40MPH limit as we get further from the town centre, but need to slow down again to 30 as we approach Queensbury and cross the A644 at a signalled crossroads. After that we become a windy 50MPH road across the tops between Queensbury and Halifax.
After a few miles, we begin to drop downhill drop again, passing a 40MPH buffer speed limit and then becoming a 30MPH limit road and we finish at the end of the North Bridge at Dean Clough Junction, on the outskirts of Halifax Town Centre, underneath the Burdock Way.
Original Author(s): Chris W