Bridgwater is an ancient market town located on the River Parrett in central Somerset. The docks and canal saw the town become an industrial centre in the Victorian era, and while many of the factories (including the 'Smellophane' site north of the town) have now long gone, the town is unfortunately still blighted by its industrial past to a certain extent.
The M5 provides an effective bypass to the town, with junctions to the north at Dunball, and south at Huntworth. While the A39 passes through the town, it is only primary along the spur to the M5 at Dunball, about 2 miles north of the centre.
The biggest change for Bridgwater since the map on the left was printed was the construction of the relief road in the town centre. This loosely follows the line of the curving white road shown, to the south of the centre, then connecting up with the A38/A39 junction with the A372. The construction of the M5 to the east of the town a few years later had a massive impact on traffic levels in the town, but not on its road network as such.
More recently, the northern development road has been constructed around the north of the town from 'Castle Field' to just west of the A39 / B3339 junction.