A580 road

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A580 road shield

A580 road
Route information
Length: 29.5 mi (47.5 km)
History: Construction began 29 April 1929 and finished in 1934
Major junctions
West end: Walton, Liverpool
  A5058 A5058 road
[ M 57  ] M57 motorway
A59 A59 road
A5207 A5207 road
A5208 A5208 road
A570 A570 road
A571 A571 road
A58 A58 road
A49 A49 road
[ M 6  ] M6 motorway
A573 A573 road
A572 A572 road
A579 A579 road
A574 A574 road
A577 A577 road
A575 A575 road
[ M 61  ] M61 motorway
[ M 60  ] M60 motorway
A5185 A5185 road
A666 A666 road
A6 A6 road
East end: Irlams o' th' Height, Salford (A6)
St Helens, Merseyside
Road network

The A580 (Liverpool-East Lancashire Road) is the United Kingdom's first purpose-built intercity highway.[1] The road, which was officially opened by King George V on 18 July 1934, links Walton in Liverpool to Salford near Manchester. It remains a primary A road in England and is known colloquially as the "East Lancs Road".[1]


The road was built to provide better access between the Port of Liverpool at the west, and Manchester and the industrial areas of East Lancashire at the east.[1] Designed to be three-roads-in-one, the central section was exclusively for through traffic while adjacent side roads - either side of the main carriageway - provided local access.[1] A few short stretches through Salford continue to use the original layout, whereas the rest of the road has been converted to dual carriageway with a central reservation in the 1950s and 1960s.


A section of the "East Lancs Road" at Wardley in the City of Salford.

The first section of road to be completed was from Walton, Liverpool to the junction with the A6 at Irlams o' th' Height in Salford. The highway, which has an almost straight alignment with few curves, it has three roundabouts, was completed within three years.

The second phase: to extend the road beyond Salford and into East Lancashire was never undertaken. In 1942, proposals were put forward to extend the road across the Pennines to Hull on the east coast of Britain.[2] This plan became the foundations for the construction of the M62 motorway beginning in 1960. The failure to complete the envisaged scheme was largely due to the road's planning. Both ends of the East Lancs began in high-density urban areas where there was no further infrastructure to assist rapid transit connections to the rest of the UK's national road network.


  1. ^ a b c d "Early Highways Liverpool-East Lancashire Road A580". Historic Highways. Lancashire County Council. Archived from the original on 29 December 2007. Retrieved 2008-01-19. 
  2. ^ "Preston Bypass". http://www.cbrd.co.uk. Retrieved 9 September 2013. 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 53°28′15″N 2°36′54″W / 53.4707°N 2.6149°W / 53.4707; -2.6149