The A30 is one of the UK's longest A-roads, running from the fringes of London to Land's End. Along the way it varies in importance, beginning life as a suburban arterial road, connecting up a string of large Hampshire towns, and then quietly retreating into the background while the A303 takes the limelight from the M3 to Somerset. Then suddenly - and the transition is indeed very sudden - at Honiton it transforms into a major interurban expressway, powering across the middle of Devon and forming the vital spine road on which virtually the whole of Cornwall relies.

It's the expressway through Devon and Cornwall that puts it here in the Motorway Database, of course, and while the idea of a spine road down into the south west might seem obvious it's only surprisingly recently that it's formed anything like a continuous route. In fact the history of the A30 in the south west is a story of one bottleneck being replaced by another.

As far back as the 1930s the Exeter Bypass was a problem, and by the 1970s it was unbearable. Further down the line, the difficult bends at Launceston and the historic town centres on the rest of the road meant the journey from north of Exeter to the far reaches of Cornwall could easily take the best part of a day in summer holiday traffic. Even today, with most of the route a fast dual carriageway, the first rule of driving in Cornwall is that it's further than you think to Penzance.

In 1977, the new M5 Exeter Bypass opened, solving the most notorious bottleneck once and for all, just a year or so later than other vital bypasses at Redruth, Launceston and Bodmin. But all it did was move the bottlenecks to new places: with traffic moving freely on new roads, Exeter and Launceston were replaced by Okehampton and Indian Queens in traffic reports. New bypasses continued to open until the bottlenecks became the end of the bypass and the return to the old single carriageway road between them. Each generation's memories of childhood holidays to the south west are characterised by memories of the summer queues on the A30 at whichever was the worst part when they visited. (When I was a child it was the end of the Okehampton Bypass and the long slog towards Launceston, a rural stretch that was finally bypassed in 1993.)

Today the gaps in the expressway are fewer. The worst remaining one is the final section of single carriageway between Bodmin and Exeter, which lies between Temple and Higher Carblake, and which was finally upgraded when Cornwall Council funded the improvement. The A30 is a trunk road, but the local authority paid for the work anyway to stop the crippling effect on the county's economy. (The exit list shows this section complete, though it's being published about six months ahead of it properly opening to traffic.)

One final section, now in planning and again to be funded by Cornwall Council, will see the gap between Carland Cross and Chiverton Cross filled in with a new dual carriageway. That will complete a continuous expressway from Exeter to Redruth and perhaps, for the very first time, put an end to the chronic congestion that has been a feature of summer holidays on the A30 since long before anyone can remember.

What we're left with - despite the one remaining gap - is one of the UK's most pleasant expressway routes, traversing varied scenery from the rolling hills of Devon to the stark expanse of Bodmin Moor and the cosy villages of Cornwall. It helps, of course, that many of its travellers associate it with holidays in one of Britain's most wonderful places and summer journeys to the seaside. And even for those who don't - those who live in Cornwall all year round and use the A30 to get to work or to run their business - the shape and the geography of the county mean that there are few other dual carriageways that could claim to be quite so uniquely indispensable.

You're not looking at the whole A30

This page is about the parts of the A30 that are designated a motorway or that have motorway characteristics. Other sections of this road will not be featured here and will not count towards the length of the road as shown below.

Start
Honiton
End
Camborne
Passes
Exeter, Okehampton, Launceston, Bodmin, Newquay, Redruth
Connects to
Length
117 miles
Open Junctions Section
1966 Honiton Bypass
1975 Redruth, Poole and Camborne Bypass
1976 Bolventor Bypass
1976 Launceston Bypass
1976 Bodmin Bypass
May 1977 M5 → Alphington
1978 Alphington → Whiddon Down
1987 Whiddon Down → Okehampton
1988 Okehampton Bypass
1993 Okehampton → Launceston
1995 Chiverton Cross → Redruth
1995 Indian Queens → Fraddon
Aug 1999 Honiton → Exeter
2007 Bodmin → Indian Queens

Exit list

This exit list contains the best place name anywhere in the Motorway Database, which is Broadwoodwidger.

Junction   Eastbound               Westbound  
London
Andover
Yeovin
A30 (A303 Link)
Dorchester
A35
EAST
A30






A35
Honiton
A35
LanesLanesLanesLanes Signs LanesLanesLanes Signs
1.5 miles, 2 lanes 1.5 miles, 2 lanes
Honiton
A375
Heathpark
A375
(A373)
Sidmouth A375
Collumpton
(A373)
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
4 miles, 2 lanes 1.8 miles, 2 lanes
B3177 Ottery St Mary B3177
Fairmile
Feniton
Fenny Bridges
LanesLanesLanesLanes
   
Fenny Bridges (B3177)
Feniton
Fairmile
(B3177)
LanesLanesLanesLanes
2.6 miles, 2 lanes 4.8 miles, 2 lanes
Ottery St Mary
B3174
Whimple
B3174 B3174

B3180
Exmouth
Budleigh Salterton
B3180
Ottery St Mary
B3174
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
4.8 miles, 2 lanes 4.8 miles, 2 lanes
Aylesbeare
Exeter Airport Airport
B3184
Clyst Honiton
B3184
B3174

Exeter Airport Airport
B3184
Sowton Village
Clyst Honiton
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
1.4 miles, 2 lanes 1.4 miles, 2 lanes
M5 J29 Bristol
Taunton
Barnstaple
M5 Link
Exeter A3015
M5


A3015



M5 (A30)
Exeter A3015
Bristol
Taunton
M5 Link
Science Park
LanesLanesLanesLanes SignsSigns LanesLanesLanesLanes SignsSigns
   
A30 follows M5 for 5 miles
 
M5 J31
195.8 km
Plymouth
A38
Torquay
(A380)
M5 (A30)



A38
(A380)
Plymouth
A38
Torquay
(A380)
LanesLanesLanesLanes Signs LanesLanesLanesLanesLanesLanes Signs
2 miles, 2 lanes 2 miles, 2 lanes
192.8 km Exeter
A377
A377 Exeter
Crediton
A377
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
5.4 miles, 2 lanes 5.4 miles, 2 lanes
184 km Tedburn St Mary
Pathfinder Village
Tedburn St Mary
Pathfinder Village
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
3.3 miles, 2 lanes 3.3 miles, 2 lanes
178.8 km Cheriton Bishop
Tedburn St Mary
Cheriton Bishop
Crockernwell
Drewsteignton
Fingle Bridge
Tedburn St Mary
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
5.6 miles, 2 lanes 5.6 miles, 2 lanes
169.7 km Moretonhampstead
A382
Torrington
Winkleigh
(A3124)
A382
(A3124)
Moretonhampstead
A382
Torrington
Winkleigh
(A3124)
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
5.5 miles, 2 lanes 5.5 miles, 2 lanes
161 km Okehampton
B3260
B3260 Okehampton
B3260
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
4 miles, 2 lanes  
154.4 km Okehampton
B3260
B3260
LanesLanesLanesLanes
1.1 miles, 2 lanes 5.1 miles, 2 lanes
152.6 km Bideford
Tavistock
Plymouth
A386
A386
(A3079)

A386 Tavistock
Bideford
Plymouth
A386
Holsworthy
Bude (A3079)
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
8.3 miles, 2 lanes 8.3 miles, 2 lanes
139.3 km Broadwoodwidger
Bratton Clovelly
Stowford
Broadwoodwidger
Bratton Clovelly
Stowford
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
3.6 miles, 2 lanes 3.6 miles, 2 lanes
133.6 km Polson A388
Liftondown
Lifton
Tinhay
Lewdown

A388
(B3362)
Tavistock
(B3362)
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
2.2 miles, 2 lanes  
130 km Plymouth (A38 Link)
Callington A388
Liskeard (A390)
Tavistock (B3362)
A388 A388
(A38)
(A390)
(B3362)
LanesLanesLanesLanes
0.7 miles, 2 lanes 2.9 miles, 2 lanes
128.8 km Launceston
Holsworthy A388
Bude (B3254)
A388
(A390)
(B3254)
B3254 Launceston
Callington A388
Bude (B3254)
Liskeard (A390)
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
2.3 miles, 2 lanes 1 mile, 2 lanes
127.4 km Tregadillett
Trebursye
LanesLanesLanesLanes
  1.3 miles, 2 lanes
125.2 km Tregadillett
South Petherwin
Camelford
A395


A395
(A39)
Wadebridge
Camelford
A395 (A39)
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
1.2 miles, 2 lanes 1.2 miles, 2 lanes
123.2 km Hicksmill
Polyphant
Hicksmill
Polyphant
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
0.4 miles, 2 lanes 0.4 miles, 2 lanes
122.5 km Blackhill Quarry Blackhill Quarry
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
1.7 miles, 2 lanes 1.7 miles, 2 lanes
119.8 km Callington
B3257
Services Plusha
B3257 Callington
B3257
Services Plusha
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
1.9 miles, 2 lanes  
118.3 km
  1.4 miles, 2 lanes
117.5 km Five Lanes
Trewint
Altarnun
LanesLanesLanesLanes
   
116.8 km Trewint
Five Lanes
Altarnun
LanesLanesLanesLanes
1.4 miles, 2 lanes 1.9 miles, 2 lanes
114.3 km Local traffic Local traffic
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
1.6 miles, 2 lanes 1.6 miles, 2 lanes
111.8 km Bolventor
St Neot
St Clear
Siblyback Lake
Bolventor
St Neot
St Clear
Siblyback Lake
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
1.7 miles, 2 lanes 1.7 miles, 2 lanes
109 km Warleggan
St Neot
Mount
Warleggan
St Neot
Mount
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
2.2 miles, 2 lanes 0.5 miles, 2 lanes
108.3 km Temple
LanesLanesLanesLanes
  1.7 miles, 2 lanes
105.5 km St Breward
Temple
Temple
St Breward
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
2 miles, 2 lanes 2 miles, 2 lanes
102.1 km Blisland
St Breward
Millpool
Cardinham
Mount
Warleggan
Blisland
St Breward
Millpool
Cardinham
Mount
Warleggan
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
0.7 miles, 2 lanes 0.7 miles, 2 lanes
101 km Blisland
Tresarrett
Bodmin Airfield
Cardinham
Blisland
Tresarrett
Bodmin Airfield
Cardinham
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
1.2 miles, 2 lanes 0.6 miles, 2 lanes
99.9 km Cardinham
LanesLanesLanesLanes
  0.6 miles, 2 lanes
99 km Helland
Bodmin
(A389)
(A389) Helland
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
2.6 miles, 2 lanes 0.8 miles, 2 lanes
98 km A38
(A389)
(B3268)
Bodmin (A389)
Liskeard A38
Lostwithiel (B3268)
LanesLanesLanesLanes
   
95 km Bodmin (A389)
Liskeard
Plymouth A38
A38
(A389)
A38
LanesLanesLanesLanes
4.2 miles, 2 lanes 6 miles, 2 lanes
88 km Wadebridge
A389
St Austell
A391
A389 A391 Wadebridge
A389
St Austell
A391
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
2.1 miles, 2 lanes 2.1 miles, 2 lanes
84.7 km Victoria
Roche
B3274
Services Cornwall
B3274 Victoria
Roche
B3274
Services Cornwall
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
5.4 miles, 2 lanes 5.4 miles, 2 lanes
76.1 km Wadebridge
Newquay (A392)
Indian Queens
A39
St Dennis B3279
A39
(A392)
B3279 Newquay (A392)
Airport Airport
St Columb
Indian Queens
A39
St Dennis B3279
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
1 mile, 2 lanes  
75 km
LanesLanesLanesLanesLanes
0.7 miles, 3 lanes 1.7 miles, 2 lanes
73.8 km Fraddon
Grampound Road
Ladock
B3275
Services Penhale
B3275 Fraddon
Grampound Road
Ladock
B3275
Services Penhale
LanesLanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
0.4 miles, 3 lanes  
73 km
LanesLanesLanesLanes
1.2 miles, 2 lanes 1.6 miles, 2 lanes
71 km St Austell
Newquay
Summercourt
A3058

A3058

A3058
St Austell
Newquay
Summercourt
A3058
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
1.8 miles, 2 lanes 1.8 miles, 2 lanes
68 km Newquay
Mitchell
St Newlyn East
A3076
A3076 Newquay
Mitchell
St Newlyn East
A3076
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
1.1 miles, 2 lanes 1.1 miles, 2 lanes
66.2 km N/A
A30
A39 Truro
A39
LanesLanesLanesLanes
   
A30 is below standard for 8 miles
 
53.6 km St Agnes B3277
Newquay A3075
Truro A390



A3075

B3277
A30



A390
N/A
LanesLanesLanesLanes
2.1 miles, 2 lanes 2.1 miles, 2 lanes
50.2 km Scorrier
A3047
Blackwater
A3047
(B3297)
Helston (B3297)
Scorrier
A3047
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
2 miles, 2 lanes 2 miles, 2 lanes
47 km Redruth
Scorrier
A3047
Portreath
Falmouth
A3047

A3047
Redruth
Portreath
A3047
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
2.4 miles, 2 lanes 2.4 miles, 2 lanes
43.1 km Camborne
A3047
Portreath

A3047
Pool
Camborne
A3047
Portreath
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
1.9 miles, 2 lanes 1.9 miles, 2 lanes
40.1 km Camborne
A3047
A3047 Camborne (W)
A3047
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
0.8 miles, 2 lanes 0.8 miles, 2 lanes
39.2 km
A30
WEST
LanesLanesLanesLanes LanesLanesLanesLanes
Routes

Picture credits