The A34 is a major road in England. It runs from the A33 and M3 at
Winchester in Hampshire, to the A6 and A6042 in Salford, close to
Manchester City Centre.  It forms a large part of the major trunk
route from Southampton, via Oxford, to Birmingham,
The Potteries and
Manchester. For most of its length (together with the A5011 and parts
of the A50, and A49), it forms part of the former Winchester-Preston
Trunk Road. Improvements to the section of road forming the
Newbury Bypass around Newbury were the scene of significant direct
action environmental protests in the 1990s. It is 151 miles
(243 km) long.
1.1 Map of route
2 History and renumbering
4 External links
The road is in two sections. The northern section runs south through
Manchester and Cheadle, and bypasses Handforth,
Wilmslow and Alderley
Edge, before passing through Congleton, Newcastle-under-Lyme, and the
southern suburbs of Stoke-on-Trent. It then continues south via Stone,
Cannock and Walsall, passes through the middle of Birmingham
(where it briefly merges with the A41), before meeting the M42
motorway at junction 4 south of Solihull.
The road in effect combines with the motorway network and resumes. The
southern section begins 45 miles (72 km) SSE (along the M40
motorway), at the
Bicester /ˈbɪstə/ ( listen) junction.
It continues south as the straightest (western) part of the Oxford
Ring Road, crossing the
River Thames on the A34 Road Bridge. It then
bypasses Abingdon, Didcot, and Newbury before finishing at the
Winchester turning of the M3 motorway, junction 9. This part
of the A34 forms the E05 European route. It is a dual carriageway
Together with parts of the M3 and the M40, the A34 forms an important
route carrying freight from
Southampton to the Midlands. Because of
the volume of traffic, bypasses were built along this route – at
Newbury on the A34, and at
Twyford Down near
Winchester on the M3 –
but these were controversial for environmental reasons. Notably
instead of cutting a short road tunnel through Twyford Down, the
escarpment was carved out for the road traffic of the motorway and
In 2004 works were carried out, at a cost of £38 million, continuing
the road without being interrupted by a roundabout at junction 13 of
the M4 motorway, which had caused a "bottleneck".
The A34 looking North towards Didcot, in Oxfordshire, with the power
In Drayton, near Abingdon (Oxfordshire) a junction used by
construction vehicles to gain access onto the A34 during its
construction still exists as a "closed road", a few miles from the
nearest alternative accesses. Plans are in discussion regarding
possible re-opening of this closed access point.
Map of route
Route of A34 overlaid on OpenStreetMap
History and renumbering
For further information, see Great Britain road numbering scheme.
Manchester where the A34 nears the end of its route.
The original (1922) route of the A34 was
Winchester to Oxford, much
shorter than it is today. It was extended to
Manchester on 1 April
1935, replacing part of the A42 (
Stratford-upon-Avon and Henley-in-Arden), A455
Birmingham to Stafford), part of the A449 (
Stafford to Newcastle
under Lyme) and A526 (Newcastle to Manchester).
By 1953 the route was as follows:
(1 mile (1.6 km) east of Chipping Norton)
Oxford Ring Road was completed to the west of
Oxford in 1962,
the old route through the city was renumbered the A4144. On completion
of the Abingdon Bypass in the 1970s, the old route from the Oxford
Ring Road through Abingdon and Steventon to Chilton was partly
declassified (for 5 miles (8.0 km)) and the rest renumbered
A4183, B4017, A4130 and A4185.
In 1991, shortly after the completion of the M40 motorway, the road
Solihull was renumbered. Between Chipping Norton
Solihull the road lost its primary route status and was renumbered
A3400, and south of Chipping Norton the route became part of an
extended A44. The A34 was diverted north from the
Oxford Ring Road to
the M40 along parts of the former routes of the A43 and A421. Much of
the long-distance traffic carried by what is now the A3400 now uses
the M40 to Birmingham, and the M42 and M6 to by-pass the city.
Newbury Bypass was opened in 1998, the old route through
Newbury became part of the A339 and the B4640.
The long planned and often postponed
Alderley Edge bypass was
completed in November 2010, ahead of schedule and within the £52
million budget. The official opening ceremony was conducted by the
Chancellor of the Exchequer, the Rt Hon
George Osborne MP, on 19
^ "1:500,000 road map". Ordnance Survey. Retrieved 22 December
^ "The Winchester-Preston Trunk Road (A34) (
Newbury Bypass Detrunking)
(No.2) Order 1993". Retrieved 26 December 2011.
^ "Trunk Roads Acts 1936 and 1946" (PDF). Retrieved 26 December
^ "1996: Green groups join bypass battle". BBC News. 18 January 1996.
Retrieved 22 December 2011.
^ "A34 Chieveley/M4 Junction 13 improvement". Highways Agency.
Archived from the original on 20 December 2010. Retrieved 22 December
^ List Of Class I and Class II Roads and Numbers
(transcription) : HMSO
^ The National Archives
File MT39/246 : "CLASSIFICATION :
Renumbering of classified routes"
^ AA Road Book of
England and Wales, 4th edition (1953)
^ Cheshire East Council News Release
^ "Chancellor opens
Alderley Edge bypass after 90 year wait".
Manchester Evening News. M.E.N. Media. 19 November 2010.
Wikimedia Commons has media related to
A34 road (England).
Route map: Google
KML file (edit • help)
Display on Google Maps
Template:Attached KML/A34 road
KML is from Wikidata
The Highways Agency Management Strategy for
Bicester to Winchester.
The Highways Agency A34-M4 junction improvements.
A detailed review of the A34 and its history
A34 Stratford Road red route, Birmingham
A roads in Zone 3 of the Great Britain road numbering scheme
List of A roads in Zone 3
List of B roads in Zone 3
Streets and roads in Birmingham, England
City centre streets
City centre squares
St Paul's Square
A4040 (outer ring road)
A4400 (inner ring road)