A1 in Northumberland named among England's favourite driving routes

The A1 in Northumberland has been revealed as one of England's favourite driving routes.

By Ian Smith
Monday, 20 May, 2019, 12:55
The A1 in Northumberland

A fun online poll by Highways England asked people to name their favourite stretch of road and the northern stretch of the A1 came in fourth place.

The survey results come ahead of the late May bank holiday when Highways England lifts as many roadworks as possible at this popular time for travel.

With the roads prepared for the holiday getaway, Highways England is also calling on motorists travelling this bank holiday to make sure their vehicle is ready for the journey ahead.

Research shows almost half of all breakdowns are caused by simple mechanical problems which could be avoided with simple checks and nearly a quarter are caused by tyre problems.

Highways England’s customer service director, Melanie Clarke, said: “Many people have a favourite road they love driving on – and we want everyone to reach their destinations safely.

“We’re doing everything we can to make journeys as smooth as possible for those travelling and that’s why we’re keeping around 97 per cent of the road network we manage, free from roadworks.

“Safety is our top priority and we know from experience that almost half of breakdowns can easily be avoided if motorists carry out simple vehicle checks before setting off over this period.”

The motorway and major A-road network will be free of roadworks from 6am Friday, May 24 until 12.01am on Tuesday, May 28.

Highways England traffic officers will be working around the clock to help people who get into difficulty.

Before they set off, Highways England is urging motorists to:

Check fuel: Make sure you have enough to get to your destination

Check tyres: check your tyre pressure and the condition of your tyres, including the spare. Look out for cuts or wear and make sure the tyres have a minimum tread depth of 1.6mm, which is the legal limit

Check engine oil: Use your dipstick to check oil before any long journey, and top up if needed - take your car back to the garage if you’re topping up more than usual

Check water: To ensure you have good visibility, always keep your screen wash topped up so you can clear debris or dirt off your windscreen

Check your lights: If your indicators, hazard lights, headlights, fog lights, reverse lights or brake lights are not functioning properly, you are putting yourself at risk. In addition, light malfunctions can be a reason for your vehicle to fail its MOT

Highways England is also reminding people to ensure that they have the correct licence and insurance to tow whatever the weight, make sure you have connected correctly, and always ensure your load is secure and within the limits for your vehicle before setting off.

A series of specialist videos can be found online to help people carry out basic vehicle checks before they set off on their travels. The videos can be viewed online.

Highways England is also urging drivers to stay safe by adhering to motorway signage, including the red X signals on smart motorways. Highways England close lanes for a reason and drivers ignoring red X signs put themselves and others at risk.

Find out more about driving on smart motorways. for further information.

Drivers planning to use the Dartford Crossing are reminded to pay Dart Charge in advance or by midnight the day after crossing.

More information can be found on our website or by calling our information line (0300 123 5000) they can keep up to date with conditions on the roads.

For more detailed information on how to carry out your vehicle checks, search Think!

The top ten list of England's favourite driving roads:

1) M6 in North West (near Cumbria) M1 in Leicestershire (near Lutterworth) in joint first place

3) M5 in South West (near Taunton)

4) A1 in Northumberland

5) M62 in the North West (near Chainbar)

6) M40 in the South East (near Chiltern Hills)

7) M25 in the South East (near Surrey)

8) A38 in the South West (near Tamar Bridge to Exeter)

9) M3 in the South East (near Warnborough)

10) M4 in the South East (near Reading by North Wessex AONB)