B78 (Northern Ireland)
|Location Map ( geo)|
|Distance:||20.3 miles (32.7 km)|
|Meets:||A29, A25, B134, B3, A28, B111, A51, B131, A27, A27, A3, B77|
|Former Number(s):||A28, A27|
|Old route now:||A27|
|Route outline (key)|
The B78 is a medium-length B-road in central County Armagh.
The road starts in the centre of Newtownhamilton. Logically it should start at a TOTSO on the A25 but according to signs the road from here to the A29 is the B78 and not A25, which would make this an example of a useless multiplex where the Class II road is dominant over the Class I road. This reflects that the A25 was diverted along this section of the B78 at some stage after 1970, but the 1960s Worboys signs were not changed.
The B78 initially heads east then northwards along Cladymilltown Road, running across the moors to Cladymilltown itself. After a couple of miles of fields, a T-junction is reached. To the right is the B134 and the B78 TOTSOs left. Markethill is soon reached, where the road crosses the B3 at a roundabout then continues north along the original line of the A28 to a T-junction and the A28 bypass.
There is a short multiplex west along the A28 and the B76 soon turns right to regain its number and its northerly route. After about a mile, at Mullaghbrack, it TOTSOs right (ahead is the B111) and runs northeastwards along Mullurg Road to a T-junction on the A51. This is crossed via a short multiplex to the east and the B78 continues northeastwards from here.
After going through Derryhale another T-junction, on the A27, is met and there is now a short multiplex to the right. The B78 then regains its number and heads north along Tandragee Road into Portadown. After going under the Belfast to Dublin railway line the B78 runs along Thomas Street and meets the A27 again (although this road is the pre-bypass A3) at the far end. Traffic here must turn left and multiplexes west for the best part of a mile to a point that would be easier to reach had we turned left instead of right at the first junction with the A27.
The B78 regains its number by turning right at traffic lights. It heads north along Brownstown Road and crosses the A3, where there are east-facing slip roads. Shortly afterwards is a roundabout where the B77 is met and the B78 ends.
On classification in 1923, the B78 started on the A28 at Markethill and ran north to end on the original line of the A27 (Tandragee Road) to the south of Portadown. The road was soon extended southwards into Newtownhamilton.
In the 1930s, the B78 was extended north into Portadown. Its original northern end on the A27 became a spur and the B78 also ran along Mahon Road to end on the B77. It was later extended further still to the A4 Corcrain Road, although this extension has now been declassified once more.
When Portadown was bypassed in the 1970s the A27 and B78 swapped numbers south of the original A3 (which became an extension of the A27). This gave the B78 its current route and explains the two multiplexes with the A27 and the fact that Brownstown Road appears to be disconnected from the remainder of the B78.