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Location Map ( geo)
Cameraicon.png View gallery (6)
From:  Leith (NT268758)
To:  Granton (NT236771)
Distance:  2.4 miles (3.9 km)
Meets:  A900, A902, A199, A903
Highway Authorities


Traditional Counties


Route outline (key)
A901 Leith - Granton

The A901 runs west from the centre of Leith along the waterfront to Granton harbour, where it meets the A903. Much of the area it passes through was formerly industrial land, close to the ports of Leith, Newhaven, and Granton, but with the decline in sea traffic it is now largely redeveloped as a popular residential area.


Great Junction Street, Leith

The road branches off the A900 at the Foot of Leith Walk and skirts the western fringe of Leith as Great Junction Street, heading north west between shops before crossing over the Water of Leith on Junction Bridge. Immediately after this, traffic lights mark the eastern end of the A902 (Ferry Road). The A901 then becomes the tenemented North Junction Street, before meeting the A199 at another signal-controlled crossroads where it turns left and head west towards Newhaven and Granton as Lindsay Road.

Tenements and an industrial estate mark this stretch and until the road was improved in the 1970s the original alignment had a dog-leg where it crossed the now-dismantled Edinburgh-Leith railway line; this can be seen on the south side of Lindsay Road, the old trackbed converted to parkland and the old road bridge now closed to traffic. Immediately beyond is evidence of another re-alignment, the cobbled Annfield and Newhaven Main Street, complete with setts, heading west through Newhaven (though not quite meeting up as the original road is now closed off at both ends). Here Lindsay Road becomes Newhaven Place then Pier Place, with lots of new build flats out on the shore side to the north in an area which was once part of the docks. After crossing a roundabout to become Starbank Road, the A901 follows the south side of the Firth of Forth (the towers of the Forth Bridges can be seen from here on a clear day).

The roundabout at Craighall Road

After another quarter of a mile there is an S-bend at the bottom of Trinity Road. Until recently the road narrowed here and signals restricted it to alternate one-way working (a throwback to the tram days) because the bends were to tight for large vehicles to negotiate without blocking oncoming traffic. A junction upgrade in 2014 now allows simultaneous two-way traffic. The road now runs alongside a grassy 'beach lawn', the line of the former Granton Harbour branch line, which crossed at the junction. There must be some reason why the road wasn't realigned to make it more or less straight when the bridge was removed and the railway lifted, or indeed more recently when a straighter alignment could have been introduced.

The last stretch of the A901 follows the serpentine-like Lower Granton Road to its terminus at Granton Square. The square is laid out as a large roundabout with a total of 6 roads joining including the short A903 which also terminates here. There don't appear to be any records defining whether Granton Square is part of the A901 or A903, or even part of each.

Marine Drive

By continuing along the shore along West Harbour Road and Marine Drive to Silverknowes, evidence can be found of an aborted project to take the road west to Cramond - a dead-end dual-carriageway spur of Marine Drive west of Silverknowes Road. There is some evidence that this road was built as an access to a proposed shoreside airport near Cramond, although the timings are somewhat disputed. Only a short section of the road past Silverknowes shows up on aerial photography from April 1946, although most of the promenade seems to be in place on the photo. It is 1955 before the road shows up in its current form on OS Mapping. This late date for construction also seems to dispel any idea that the A901 was originally intended to continue west to Cramond and somehow connect to the A90. While this would better explain the strange end-on connection with the A903, there were other similar 'junctions' in the 1922 road lists, especially in Scotland where there was no shortage of road numbers available.

The 1922 MOT Road List defines this route as: Leith - Granton

Related Pictures
View gallery (6)
Other nearby roads
NCN1 • NCN75 • NCN76 • A1 • A1/Sandbox • A7 • A8 • A9 • A68 • A70 • A71 • A89 • A90 • A199 • A700 • A701 • A702 • A703 • A720 • A772 • A900 • A902 • A903 • A904 • A982 (Edinburgh) • A1140 • A6095 • A6096 (Edinburgh) • A6106 • A7a • B700 • B701 • B900 • B901 • B924 • B1350 • B6415 • B7030 • B9080 • B9085 • Borders Historic Route • E15 • E16 • E31 (via Newcastle) • E32 (Old System) • E100 • Edinburgh - Glasgow New Road • EuroVelo 12 • Fife Coastal Tourist Route • Forth Valley Tourist Route • M8 • M9 • M90 • NCN754 • Radical Road • T1 (Britain) • T26 (Britain) • T27 (Britain) • T86 (Britain) • T89 (Britain) • West Approach Road • ZC1 (Edinburgh) • ZC11 (Edinburgh) • ZC12 (Edinburgh) • ZC13 (Edinburgh) • ZC14 (Edinburgh) • ZC15 (Edinburgh) • ZC16 (Edinburgh) • ZC17 (Edinburgh) • ZC18 (Edinburgh) • ZC19 (Edinburgh) • ZC2 (Edinburgh) • ZC20 (Edinburgh) • ZC21 (Edinburgh) • ZC22 (Edinburgh) • ZC23 (Edinburgh) • ZC24 (Edinburgh) • ZC25 (Edinburgh) • ZC26 (Edinburgh) • ZC27 (Edinburgh) • ZC28 (Edinburgh) • ZC29 (Edinburgh) • ZC3 (Edinburgh) • ZC30 (Edinburgh) • ZC31 (Edinburgh) • ZC32 (Edinburgh) • ZC33 (Edinburgh) • ZC4 (Edinburgh) • ZC43 (Edinburgh) • ZC45 (Edinburgh) • ZC5 (Edinburgh) • ZC6 (Edinburgh)
A199 • A900 • A902 • B900 • B901
A900 • A901 • A902 • A903 • A904 • A905 • A906 • A907 • A908 • A909 • A910 • A911 • A912 • A913 • A914 • A915 • A916 • A917 • A918 • A919

A920 • A921 • A922 • A923 • A924 • A925 • A926 • A927 • A928 • A929 • A930 • A931 • A932 • A933 • A934 • A935 • A936 • A937 • A938 • A939
A940 • A941 • A942 • A943 • A944 • A945 • A946 • A947 • A948 • A949 • A950 • A951 • A952 • A953 • A954 • A955 • A956 • A957 • A958 • A959
A960 • A961 • A962 • A963 • A964 • A965 • A966 • A967 • A968 • A969 • A970 • A971 • A972 • A973 • A974 • A975 • A976 • A977 • A978 • A979
A980 • A981 • A982 • A983 • A984 • A985 • A986 • A987 • A988 • A989 • A990 • A991 • A992 • A993 • A994 • A995 • A996 • A997 • A998 • A999

Defunct Itineries: A920 (Perth) • A920 (Banff) • A921 (Perth) • A921 (Fife) • A922 • A949 • A951 • A968 • A982

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