|From:||Ashton upon Mersey (SJ772923)|
|Distance:||10.5 miles (16.9 km)|
|Meets:||A6144, A56, A6144, B5397, B5167, B5168, A560, A538|
|Old route now:||A6144|
|Route outline (key)|
The B5166 is a circuitous B-road in northern Cheshire.
Originally it started on the B5158 in Carrington and headed east. However, this section has since been upgraded to the (out-of-zone) A6144 and so the current western end of the B5166 is in Ashton upon Mersey where the A6144 turns off to form the bypass.
The B5166 currently starts at a mini-roundabout and heads east. It soon reaches a T-junction where it TOTSOs right and then heads into the centre of Sale. Originally its route was straight but School Road is now largely closed to traffic so the road is diverted to the south. There is also a one-way loop immediately to the west, meaning that the B5166 crosses the A56 in two separate places (both at traffic lights).
The B5166 TOTSOs right at traffic lights to rejoin its original route at the eastern end of the pedestrian area. In quick succession, it crosses the Bridgewater Canal and the Metrolink by Sale station. The road then heads east out of town and reaches the A6144 at the other end of the bypass. There is a short multiplex around a complicated-looking gyratory.
After regaining its number the B5166 heads vaguely southeastwards along Northenden Road. This section gets quite close to the M60 at one point but there is no direct access. Eventually a set of traffic lights is reached on the edge of Northenden. The road coming in from the right is the B5167 and a multiplex follows. Maps claim that the B5167 is dominant but most road signs claim the dominant road is the B5166. Either way, the multiplex goes through a diamond GSJ with the A5103 and into the centre of Northenden before the B5166 turns right at traffic lights.
The B5166 then passes through what appears to be the back streets of town before reaching a T-junction where it TOTSOs left (the road to the right is actually the signposted route back to the multiplex). The next turn to the right is the B5168, which leads to the M56 at J2. The B5166 continues ahead to go over the Stockport to Altrincham railway line before crossing a bridge over the M56 and reaching traffic lights on the A560.
Originally the B5166 ended here. However, it was extended after World War II and so continues ahead. It runs parallel to the Styal Line for a couple of miles, seemingly on the edge of the urban area, before reaching a set of traffic lights. The road to the right, despite being unclassified, is one of the main access routes to Manchester Airport.
The road then goes over the two railway lines to the airport before going through Styal itself. It descends to cross the River Dean before continuing eastwards through the suburbs of Wilmslow. It then reaches a T-junction. At one time this road was the A34 and the B5166 ended here. With the construction of the Wilmslow/Handforth bypass the B5166 was extended south along the pre-bypass route as far as the next roundabout, where it now ends on the A538 on the edge of the town centre.