A421 Great Barford Bypass

Scheme outline

Construction of a new dual two-lane route to bypass Great Barford to the north, connecting with the existing A421 Bedford Bypass. This scheme ties in with planned improvements west of Bedford, with the end result of a dualled and grade separated route from the M1 at Milton Keynes to the A1.

The route will terminate on the A1 at the existing Black Cat Roundabout which will be made slightly larger - it is not widely thought that this will be adequate considering the extra traffic that the improvements will bring. Some sources claim that this was done because there is still a possibility of the A1 being upgraded to motorway at some point in the future, in which case the junction would be replaced.

This scheme was completed in and we're no longer accepting updates or changes to this page.

Bypass or realignment
for use by all traffic
Highway authority
Central Government


14 October 2004

Preparatory works are underway. Despite much local support for the Bypass, there is concern over the rising costs and delays surrounding the project, originally costed at £38m.

14 February 2005

Protesters make the news by chaining themselves to bulldozers and building tree houses to try to halt work on the new route.

14 October 2005

The contractor has announced that they are working well within the schedule and should complete the works ahead of the Autumn 2006 target date. Work is well underway on the bypass.

14 March 2006

Construction is now well under way, with temporary road alignments making the original layouts unrecognisable at the Black Cat (A1) and Bedford Southern Bypass. The black cat sculpture itself has gone mysteriously missing.

14 August 2006

The bypass is opened on 24 August by roads minister Stephen Ladyman.

More information