|From:||St Austell By Pass (SX005520)|
|To:||Little Petherick, Padstow (SW910723)|
|Via:||St Austell Town Centre, Stenalees & Roche|
|Length:||18.4 miles (29.6 km)|
|Meets:||A390, A3058, A391, A30, A39, A389|
|Former Number(s):||A391, B3275, A30|
|Old route now:||A389|
|Route outline (key)|
The B3274 is a near-coast-to-coast route in central Cornwall.
St Austell Bypass - Little Petherick
The B3274 starts on the A3058 at a signalised crossroads very close to the A390 St Austell Bypass. The road heads into town, crosses a bridge over the St Austell River and low-lying ground and passes another signalised crossroads with local roads. The road climbs from the valley and at the town centre pedestrian zone does a near 180-degree turn. It continues to climb along the valley side.
Following a change to a 40mph limit, the road enters a wooded area. At Trethowel the limit returns to 30mph. We are in an area of china clay mining and at the village of Ruddlemoor, with another 30mph limit, is a museum and country park created out of the former workings. A roundabout junction with the primary A391 follows at Stenalees. The limit here is also 30mph. The A391 is the second and third exits, so the B3274 takes the first and performs a cannon with the other road.
High up on the moors now, the road continues past further china clay workings, before enjoying its first taste of the NSL. It descends slowly towards Trezaise (with a 40mph limit) and then Roche, a larger settlement with a 30mph limit. In the village is a mini roundabout where both forks are the B3274. Taking the second fork, the road continues through Roche on a section with humps. At the end of the village is a man-made chicane. The road then continues across more open ground with a 40mph limit to Roche Station and a single-lane bridge over the railway, for which there is a signal. In Victoria now, the road reaches the former A30. That has now been diverted to follow the Goss Moor bypass and the B3274 has taken over the old road, so turning right it uses the old A30 to reach the Victoria Interchange with the current A30.
Returning to the previous junction, the B3274 also turns left along the old A30 and passes the rather faded or closed buildings in Victoria to a junction with that other part of the B3274 left behind in Roche. The left and right turns from this point are both part of the B3274 whilst straight on is now unclassified and leads to the famous Iron Bridge section over Goss Moor which always caused hold-ups.
From here we head north over the present A30 and the route climbs again to Belowda Beacon and Tregonetha Downs before descending to Tregonetha itself. The village has a 30mph limit and the road bends and narrows in it. Following this it's into open countryside again but there are frequent narrow sections ahead, including one stretch of a few hundred yards where it is not at all possible to pass an oncoming vehicle. As it rounds a bend and strikes for the north once more, the road becomes wider again.
At the Winnard's Perch roundabout, the road crosses the A39 Atlantic Highway. After that the road is almost characteristic of a rural A road and has plenty of width. Indeed HGVs must get to Padstow this way as the alternative A389 is very narrow. It's a relatively straightforward traverse through the countryside to the outskirts of Padstow where the A389 comes out from the right at a TOTSO and ends this road by continuing to Padstow.
As detailed in the text, the old A30 has been re-numbered as a part of the B3274 following the opening of the Goss Moor bypass. The B3274 now makes a triangle of same numbered roads to the north of Roche. The second exit from the mini roundabout in Roche as described in the text was originally numbered as the B3275. This section was re-numbered as a spur of this road in 1935.
In 1922 the road ran past its current end at the A389 TOTSO after Little Petherick. The A389 did not exist west of Bodmin at that time and the B3274 continued down to Padstow Harbour, where it ended on the B3277. By 1932 the A389 ran down to the harbour and the B3276 picked up the route west.