Opening booklets:
A1(M) Darlington Bypass

Booklet published to mark the opening of the A1(M) Darlington Bypass
Booklet published to mark the opening of the A1(M) Darlington Bypass

Opened in May 1965, the A1(M) Darlington Bypass was one of the UK's earliest motorways - the third motorway section of A1, following the bypasses of Doncaster and Stevenage, and the first motorway to tentatively head towards the North East. It exists today almost exactly as it was then, its layout largely unmodified except for new signs, barriers and surfaces. The biggest change visible since the pictures in this book were taken are the trees that have grown up on its verges.

The significance of this bypass is hard to overstate. It was the first part of the lengthy A1(M) motorway from Barton, just north of Scotch Corner, to Washington and the fringes of the Newcastle-Gateshead conurbation. The project replaced just over 30 miles of the Great North Road - which ran through many towns and villages, Darlington one of the largest on the route - with a purpose built motorway, revolutionising road travel between Tyneside and the south of England. The project also included construction of the little A66(M) to the south of Darlington, though this booklet doesn't mention it very prominently.

With thanks to Paul Easby for contributing images of this booklet.

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