Chelmsford is the county town of Essex. The town has a population of roughly 157,000 and is still growing. The main road in the area is the A12, though several other key routes meet in the town.
The town has had several attempts at a bypass, the most of recent of which was a grade separated D2 some considerable distance away from the town, constructed in 1986. It replaced an earlier version from the 1930s. The A130 multiplexes around the town on the bypass, and has been extensively upgraded to form a second high quality route from here to the Dartford Crossing.
The A414 has always been a route to Chelmsford, though its modern course runs on a completely different route to its original classification, and now continues eastwards to Maldon.