M6 motorway
Overview
 
The M6 motorway runs from junction 19 of the M1
M1 motorway
The M1 is a north–south motorway in England primarily connecting London to Leeds, where it joins the A1 near Aberford. While the M1 is considered to be the first inter-urban motorway to be completed in the United Kingdom, the first road to be built to motorway standard in the country was the...

 at the Catthorpe Interchange
Catthorpe Interchange
The Catthorpe Interchange is a major intersection at the southern end of the M6, the western end of the A14 and Junction 19 of the M1 near the village of Catthorpe in Leicestershire, England...

, near Rugby
Rugby, Warwickshire
Rugby is a market town in Warwickshire, England, located on the River Avon. The town has a population of 61,988 making it the second largest town in the county...

 via Birmingham
Birmingham
Birmingham is a city and metropolitan borough in the West Midlands of England. It is the most populous British city outside the capital London, with a population of 1,036,900 , and lies at the heart of the West Midlands conurbation, the second most populous urban area in the United Kingdom with a...

 then heads north, passing Stoke-on-Trent
Stoke-on-Trent
Stoke-on-Trent , also called The Potteries is a city in Staffordshire, England, which forms a linear conurbation almost 12 miles long, with an area of . Together with the Borough of Newcastle-under-Lyme Stoke forms The Potteries Urban Area...

, Manchester
Manchester
Manchester is a city and metropolitan borough in Greater Manchester, England. According to the Office for National Statistics, the 2010 mid-year population estimate for Manchester was 498,800. Manchester lies within one of the UK's largest metropolitan areas, the metropolitan county of Greater...

, Preston, Carlisle and terminating at the Gretna junction (J45). Here, just short of the Scottish border it becomes the A74(M) which continues to Glasgow
Glasgow
Glasgow is the largest city in Scotland and third most populous in the United Kingdom. The city is situated on the River Clyde in the country's west central lowlands...

.

The M6 is the longest motorway in the United Kingdom and one of the busiest. It incorporates the first length of motorway opened in the UK and forms part of a motorway "Backbone of Britain", running north-south between London
London
London is the capital city of :England and the :United Kingdom, the largest metropolitan area in the United Kingdom, and the largest urban zone in the European Union by most measures. Located on the River Thames, London has been a major settlement for two millennia, its history going back to its...

 and Glasgow
Glasgow
Glasgow is the largest city in Scotland and third most populous in the United Kingdom. The city is situated on the River Clyde in the country's west central lowlands...

 via the industrial North of England.
Encyclopedia
The M6 motorway runs from junction 19 of the M1
M1 motorway
The M1 is a north–south motorway in England primarily connecting London to Leeds, where it joins the A1 near Aberford. While the M1 is considered to be the first inter-urban motorway to be completed in the United Kingdom, the first road to be built to motorway standard in the country was the...

 at the Catthorpe Interchange
Catthorpe Interchange
The Catthorpe Interchange is a major intersection at the southern end of the M6, the western end of the A14 and Junction 19 of the M1 near the village of Catthorpe in Leicestershire, England...

, near Rugby
Rugby, Warwickshire
Rugby is a market town in Warwickshire, England, located on the River Avon. The town has a population of 61,988 making it the second largest town in the county...

 via Birmingham
Birmingham
Birmingham is a city and metropolitan borough in the West Midlands of England. It is the most populous British city outside the capital London, with a population of 1,036,900 , and lies at the heart of the West Midlands conurbation, the second most populous urban area in the United Kingdom with a...

 then heads north, passing Stoke-on-Trent
Stoke-on-Trent
Stoke-on-Trent , also called The Potteries is a city in Staffordshire, England, which forms a linear conurbation almost 12 miles long, with an area of . Together with the Borough of Newcastle-under-Lyme Stoke forms The Potteries Urban Area...

, Manchester
Manchester
Manchester is a city and metropolitan borough in Greater Manchester, England. According to the Office for National Statistics, the 2010 mid-year population estimate for Manchester was 498,800. Manchester lies within one of the UK's largest metropolitan areas, the metropolitan county of Greater...

, Preston, Carlisle and terminating at the Gretna junction (J45). Here, just short of the Scottish border it becomes the A74(M) which continues to Glasgow
Glasgow
Glasgow is the largest city in Scotland and third most populous in the United Kingdom. The city is situated on the River Clyde in the country's west central lowlands...

.

The M6 is the longest motorway in the United Kingdom and one of the busiest. It incorporates the first length of motorway opened in the UK and forms part of a motorway "Backbone of Britain", running north-south between London
London
London is the capital city of :England and the :United Kingdom, the largest metropolitan area in the United Kingdom, and the largest urban zone in the European Union by most measures. Located on the River Thames, London has been a major settlement for two millennia, its history going back to its...

 and Glasgow
Glasgow
Glasgow is the largest city in Scotland and third most populous in the United Kingdom. The city is situated on the River Clyde in the country's west central lowlands...

 via the industrial North of England. It is also part of the east-west route between the midlands and the east coast ports. The section from the M1 to the M6 Toll
M6 Toll
The M6 Toll , connects M6 Junction 4 at the NEC to M6 Junction 11A at Wolverhampton with of six-lane motorway. The weekday cash cost is £5.30 for a car and £10.60 for a HGV...

 split near Birmingham
Birmingham
Birmingham is a city and metropolitan borough in the West Midlands of England. It is the most populous British city outside the capital London, with a population of 1,036,900 , and lies at the heart of the West Midlands conurbation, the second most populous urban area in the United Kingdom with a...

 forms part of the unsigned E-road
International E-road network
The international E-road network is a numbering system for roads in Europe developed by the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe . The network is numbered from E 1 up and its roads cross national borders...

 E 24
European route E24
The European route E 24 is part of the United Nations international E-road network. It runs for from Birmingham to Ipswich.-Route:The route of the E 24 begins at the E 05 near Birmingham, where the M6 Toll merges with the M6 and the E 5 switches from the M6 Toll to the M42...

 and the section from the M6 Toll and the M42
M42 motorway
The M42 motorway is a major road in England. The motorway runs north east from Bromsgrove in Worcestershire to just south west of Ashby-de-la-Zouch in Leicestershire, passing Redditch, Solihull, the National Exhibition Centre and Tamworth on the way. The section between the M40 and M6 road forms...

 forms part of E 05.

Route

The M6 motorway runs from junction 19 of the M1
M1 motorway
The M1 is a north–south motorway in England primarily connecting London to Leeds, where it joins the A1 near Aberford. While the M1 is considered to be the first inter-urban motorway to be completed in the United Kingdom, the first road to be built to motorway standard in the country was the...

 and from the beginning of A14 in Catthorpe
Catthorpe
Catthorpe is a village and civil parish in the Harborough district of Leicestershire, England. It is close to the A5 road which forms the border with Warwickshire - the nearest town is Rugby, about four miles south-west. The parish had a population of 179 according to the 2001 census. The parish...

 near Rugby
Rugby, Warwickshire
Rugby is a market town in Warwickshire, England, located on the River Avon. The town has a population of 61,988 making it the second largest town in the county...

 in central England, passes between Coventry
Coventry
Coventry is a city and metropolitan borough in the county of West Midlands in England. Coventry is the 9th largest city in England and the 11th largest in the United Kingdom. It is also the second largest city in the English Midlands, after Birmingham, with a population of 300,848, although...

 and Nuneaton
Nuneaton
Nuneaton is the largest town in the Borough of Nuneaton and Bedworth and in the English county of Warwickshire.Nuneaton is most famous for its associations with the 19th century author George Eliot, who was born on a farm on the Arbury Estate just outside Nuneaton in 1819 and lived in the town for...

, through Birmingham
Birmingham
Birmingham is a city and metropolitan borough in the West Midlands of England. It is the most populous British city outside the capital London, with a population of 1,036,900 , and lies at the heart of the West Midlands conurbation, the second most populous urban area in the United Kingdom with a...

, Walsall
Walsall
Walsall is a large industrial town in the West Midlands of England. It is located northwest of Birmingham and east of Wolverhampton. Historically a part of Staffordshire, Walsall is a component area of the West Midlands conurbation and part of the Black Country.Walsall is the administrative...

 and Stafford
Stafford
Stafford is the county town of Staffordshire, in the West Midlands region of England. It lies approximately north of Wolverhampton and south of Stoke-on-Trent, adjacent to the M6 motorway Junction 13 to Junction 14...

 and near the major cities of Wolverhampton
Wolverhampton
Wolverhampton is a city and metropolitan borough in the West Midlands, England. For Eurostat purposes Walsall and Wolverhampton is a NUTS 3 region and is one of five boroughs or unitary districts that comprise the "West Midlands" NUTS 2 region...

 and Stoke-on-Trent
Stoke-on-Trent
Stoke-on-Trent , also called The Potteries is a city in Staffordshire, England, which forms a linear conurbation almost 12 miles long, with an area of . Together with the Borough of Newcastle-under-Lyme Stoke forms The Potteries Urban Area...

. The motorway has major junctions with the M56
M56 motorway
The M56 Motorway, also known as the North Cheshire motorway, is in Cheshire and Greater Manchester, England. It runs from Junction 4 of the M60 to Dunkirk, Cheshire and is in length. It is often busy with long-distance commuter traffic towards North Wales...

 and M62
M62 motorway
The M62 motorway is a west–east trans-Pennine motorway in Northern England, connecting the cities of Liverpool and Hull via Manchester and Leeds. The road also forms part of the unsigned Euroroutes E20 and E22...

 at Warrington
Warrington
Warrington is a town, borough and unitary authority area of Cheshire, England. It stands on the banks of the River Mersey, which is tidal to the west of the weir at Howley. It lies 16 miles east of Liverpool, 19 miles west of Manchester and 8 miles south of St Helens...

, giving access to Chester
Chester
Chester is a city in Cheshire, England. Lying on the River Dee, close to the border with Wales, it is home to 77,040 inhabitants, and is the largest and most populous settlement of the wider unitary authority area of Cheshire West and Chester, which had a population of 328,100 according to the...

, Manchester
Manchester
Manchester is a city and metropolitan borough in Greater Manchester, England. According to the Office for National Statistics, the 2010 mid-year population estimate for Manchester was 498,800. Manchester lies within one of the UK's largest metropolitan areas, the metropolitan county of Greater...

 and Liverpool
Liverpool
Liverpool is a city and metropolitan borough of Merseyside, England, along the eastern side of the Mersey Estuary. It was founded as a borough in 1207 and was granted city status in 1880...

. The M6 then heads north past Preston and Lancaster
Lancaster, Lancashire
Lancaster is the county town of Lancashire, England. It is situated on the River Lune and has a population of 45,952. Lancaster is a constituent settlement of the wider City of Lancaster, local government district which has a population of 133,914 and encompasses several outlying towns, including...

. After the latter two cities it passes through Cumbria
Cumbria
Cumbria , is a non-metropolitan county in North West England. The county and Cumbria County Council, its local authority, came into existence in 1974 after the passage of the Local Government Act 1972. Cumbria's largest settlement and county town is Carlisle. It consists of six districts, and in...

 with some parts very close to the edge of the Lake District
Lake District
The Lake District, also commonly known as The Lakes or Lakeland, is a mountainous region in North West England. A popular holiday destination, it is famous not only for its lakes and its mountains but also for its associations with the early 19th century poetry and writings of William Wordsworth...

, and then passes Carlisle on its way to Gretna, before the motorway becomes the A74(M) a few hundred metres short of the Scottish border.

Planning and construction

The first section of the motorway and the first motorway in the country was the Preston by-pass. It was built by Tarmac Construction
Tarmac (company)
Tarmac is a company that is based in Wolverhampton in the United Kingdom and operates internationally. The company produces aggregates and road-surfacing materials, including tarmacadam, from which the company's name is derived...

 and opened by the Prime Minister Harold Macmillan
Harold Macmillan
Maurice Harold Macmillan, 1st Earl of Stockton, OM, PC was Conservative Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 10 January 1957 to 18 October 1963....

 on 5 December 1958. In January 1959 the Preston By-pass was closed because of rapid surface deterioration over a stretch of 100 yards (91.4 m) "due to water freezing and then thawing". Motorists were diverted to the old road while the UK road research laboratory at Harmondsworth pondered the importance of surface water drainage.

Later the motorway was extended in both directions and is now 230 miles (370.1 km) long.
The second phase of construction was completed in 1960, forming the Lancaster
Lancaster, Lancashire
Lancaster is the county town of Lancashire, England. It is situated on the River Lune and has a population of 45,952. Lancaster is a constituent settlement of the wider City of Lancaster, local government district which has a population of 133,914 and encompasses several outlying towns, including...

 by-pass. Some 100 miles (160.9 km) south, the Stafford by-pass was completed in 1962. By 1965, the remaining sections of motorway Stafford–Preston and Preston–Lancaster had been completed. 1968 saw the completion of the Walsall
Walsall
Walsall is a large industrial town in the West Midlands of England. It is located northwest of Birmingham and east of Wolverhampton. Historically a part of Staffordshire, Walsall is a component area of the West Midlands conurbation and part of the Black Country.Walsall is the administrative...

 to Stafford link as well as the Penrith by-pass some 150 miles (241.4 km) north in Cumberland
Cumberland
Cumberland is a historic county of North West England, on the border with Scotland, from the 12th century until 1974. It formed an administrative county from 1889 to 1974 and now forms part of Cumbria....

. In 1970, the Lancaster–Penrith link was completed, along with a short section of motorway by-passing the south of Walsall. The most northerly section of the motorway also opened in 1970, running to the designated terminus north of Carlisle. By 1971, the full route was completed between the junction with the M1 motorway
M1 motorway
The M1 is a north–south motorway in England primarily connecting London to Leeds, where it joins the A1 near Aberford. While the M1 is considered to be the first inter-urban motorway to be completed in the United Kingdom, the first road to be built to motorway standard in the country was the...

 at Rugby
Rugby, Warwickshire
Rugby is a market town in Warwickshire, England, located on the River Avon. The town has a population of 61,988 making it the second largest town in the county...

 and the A452 road
A452 road
The A452 is a road in England, which runs from Leamington Spa, Warwickshire to Brownhills in Staffordshire. It is the major link to the M6 motorway for both Leamington and Warwick in addition to serving as Leamington's link to the M40 motorway and to Coventry....

 several miles north-east of Birmingham city centre, including the 3½ miles of viaduct
Viaduct
A viaduct is a bridge composed of several small spans. The term viaduct is derived from the Latin via for road and ducere to lead something. However, the Ancient Romans did not use that term per se; it is a modern derivation from an analogy with aqueduct. Like the Roman aqueducts, many early...

 between Castle Bromwich
Castle Bromwich
Castle Bromwich is a suburb situated within the northern part of the Metropolitan Borough of Solihull in the English county of West Midlands. It is bordered by the rest of the borough to the south east, North Warwickshire to the east and north east; also Shard End to the south west, Castle Vale,...

(J5) and Gravelly Hill
Gravelly Hill
Gravelly Hill is an area of Birmingham, England.- Notability :It is best known for its motorway junction, the Gravelly Hill Interchange, popularly known as Spaghetti Junction, which provides the intersection between the A38 Aston Expressway from the centre of Birmingham to the M6 motorway. The...

(J6), which is the longest viaduct in Great Britain.

Junction 6 in Birmingham
Birmingham
Birmingham is a city and metropolitan borough in the West Midlands of England. It is the most populous British city outside the capital London, with a population of 1,036,900 , and lies at the heart of the West Midlands conurbation, the second most populous urban area in the United Kingdom with a...

 is widely known as Spaghetti Junction
Gravelly Hill Interchange
Gravelly Hill Interchange, better known by its nickname Spaghetti Junction, is junction 6 of the M6 motorway where it meets the A38 Aston Expressway in Birmingham, England.- Overview :...

 because of its complexity.

On the elevated ground between Shap
Shap
Shap is a linear village and civil parish located amongst fells and isolated dales in Eden district, Cumbria, England. The village lies along the A6 road and the West Coast Main Line, and is near to the M6 motorway...

 and Tebay
Tebay
Tebay is a village and civil parish in Cumbria, England, within the traditional borders of Westmorland. It lies in the upper Lune Valley, at the head of the Lune Gorge. The parish of Tebay had a population of 728 recorded in the 2001 census,...

, the north and south-bound carriages split apart. At this point a local road (to Scout Green
Scout Green
Scout Green is a hamlet and small area of farm land near the village of Tebay in Cumbria, England.It is best known among railway enthusiasts as a location for trainspotting and photography on the West Coast Main Line between Penrith and Oxenholme, and has been a famous vantage point on the railway...

) runs between the two carriageways without a link to the motorway.

The section of the M6 which runs over Shap Fell in Cumbria
Cumbria
Cumbria , is a non-metropolitan county in North West England. The county and Cumbria County Council, its local authority, came into existence in 1974 after the passage of the Local Government Act 1972. Cumbria's largest settlement and county town is Carlisle. It consists of six districts, and in...

 is 1050 ft (320 m) above sea level, one of the highest points on any motorway in the UK (junction 22 of the M62
M62 motorway
The M62 motorway is a west–east trans-Pennine motorway in Northern England, connecting the cities of Liverpool and Hull via Manchester and Leeds. The road also forms part of the unsigned Euroroutes E20 and E22...

 on Saddleworth Moor is higher). The motorway engineers
Civil engineer
A civil engineer is a person who practices civil engineering; the application of planning, designing, constructing, maintaining, and operating infrastructures while protecting the public and environmental health, as well as improving existing infrastructures that have been neglected.Originally, a...

 here chose to follow the route of the Lancaster and Carlisle Railway
Lancaster and Carlisle Railway
The Lancaster and Carlisle Railway was a British railway company authorised on 6 June 1844 to build a line between Lancaster and Carlisle in North-West England...

 engineered by Joseph Locke
Joseph Locke
Joseph Locke was a notable English civil engineer of the 19th century, particularly associated with railway projects...

 (now part of the West Coast Main Line) where the motorway runs in a split-level cutting above the railway in the descent from Shap Fell through the Lune Gorge into southern Cumbria.

The northbound entry slip road at Lancaster (J34) is unusually short, presenting problems for traffic joining the motorway. The M6 crosses the River Lune
River Lune
The River Lune is a river in Cumbria and Lancashire, England.It is formed at Wath, in the parish of Ravenstonedale, Cumbria, at the confluence of Sandwath Beck and Weasdale Beck...

 at this point and unless the bridge had been made wider, there was no space to build a longer slip road. This junction was upgraded from an earlier emergency-vehicles-only access point, which explains the substandard design.

The route was intended to replace the old A6, but a much closer approximation to the actual route of the M6 is provided by following the route: A45, A34, A50, A49, A6.

Operational

In July 1972 the UK Minister for Transport Industries
John Peyton, Baron Peyton of Yeovil
John Wynne William Peyton, Baron Peyton of Yeovil PC, FZS was a British politician. He was Conservative Member of Parliament for Yeovil for 32 years, from 1951 to 1983, and an early and leading member of the Conservative Monday Club...

 announced that 86 miles (138.4 km) of UK motorway particularly prone to fog would benefit from lighting in a project which "should be" completed by 1973. Sections to be illuminated included the M6 between junctions 10 and 11, and between junctions 20 and 27.

In March 2006, after 15-years of debate, the government authorised the construction of a 6 miles (9.7 km) extension of the M6 from its then northern terminus near Carlisle to the Anglo-Scottish border at Gretna (the so-called "Cumberland Gap"), where it links into the existing A74(M). The road opened on 5 December 2008, the 50th anniversary of the M6 Preston Bypass. The project, which was a mixture of new road and upgrade of the existing A74, crosses the West Coast Main Line
West Coast Main Line
The West Coast Main Line is the busiest mixed-traffic railway route in Britain, being the country's most important rail backbone in terms of population served. Fast, long-distance inter-city passenger services are provided between London, the West Midlands, the North West, North Wales and the...

 and had an estimated costs of £174 million. It completed an uninterrupted motorway from just south of Dunblane
Dunblane
Dunblane is a small cathedral city and former burgh north of Stirling in the Stirling council area of Scotland. The town is situated off the A9 road, on the way north to Perth. Its main landmark is Dunblane Cathedral and the Allan Water runs through the town centre, with the Cathedral and the High...

 (via the M9, the recently opened M80
M80 motorway
The M80 is a motorway in central Scotland, running through Glasgow, North Lanarkshire, Falkirk and Stirling and links the M8, the M73 and M9 motorways. Following completion in 2011, this road is long. From 1992 - 2011, the road was in two sections; the southern section, Glasgow to Stepps and the...

 section near Cumbernauld
Cumbernauld
Cumbernauld is a Scottish new town in North Lanarkshire. It was created in 1956 as a population overspill for Glasgow City. It is the eighth most populous settlement in Scotland and the largest in North Lanarkshire...

 and the M73
M73 motorway
The M73 is a motorway in North Lanarkshire, Scotland. It is long and connects the M74 motorway with the M80 motorway, providing an eastern bypass for Glasgow. The short stretch between Junctions 1 and 2 is part of unsigned international E-road network E05, where it continues along the M8 through...

) in the north to Exeter
Exeter
Exeter is a historic city in Devon, England. It lies within the ceremonial county of Devon, of which it is the county town as well as the home of Devon County Council. Currently the administrative area has the status of a non-metropolitan district, and is therefore under the administration of the...

 (via the M5
M5 motorway
The M5 is a motorway in England. It runs from a junction with the M6 at West Bromwich near Birmingham to Exeter in Devon. Heading south-west, the M5 runs east of West Bromwich and west of Birmingham through Sandwell Valley...

) and to London
London
London is the capital city of :England and the :United Kingdom, the largest metropolitan area in the United Kingdom, and the largest urban zone in the European Union by most measures. Located on the River Thames, London has been a major settlement for two millennia, its history going back to its...

 (via both the M42
M42 motorway
The M42 motorway is a major road in England. The motorway runs north east from Bromsgrove in Worcestershire to just south west of Ashby-de-la-Zouch in Leicestershire, passing Redditch, Solihull, the National Exhibition Centre and Tamworth on the way. The section between the M40 and M6 road forms...

/M40
M40 motorway
The M40 motorway is a motorway in the British transport network that forms a major part of the connection between London and Birmingham. Part of this road forms a section of the unsigned European route E05...

 and the M1
M1 motorway
The M1 is a north–south motorway in England primarily connecting London to Leeds, where it joins the A1 near Aberford. While the M1 is considered to be the first inter-urban motorway to be completed in the United Kingdom, the first road to be built to motorway standard in the country was the...

) in the south.

The M6 Toll
M6 Toll
The M6 Toll , connects M6 Junction 4 at the NEC to M6 Junction 11A at Wolverhampton with of six-lane motorway. The weekday cash cost is £5.30 for a car and £10.60 for a HGV...

, Britain's first toll motorway
Toll road
A toll road is a privately or publicly built road for which a driver pays a toll for use. Structures for which tolls are charged include toll bridges and toll tunnels. Non-toll roads are financed using other sources of revenue, most typically fuel tax or general tax funds...

, which bypasses the West Midlands conurbation
West Midlands conurbation
The West Midlands conurbation is the name given to the large conurbation that includes the cities of Birmingham and Wolverhampton and the large towns of Dudley, Walsall, West Bromwich, Solihull, Stourbridge, Halesowen in the English West Midlands....

 to the east and north of Birmingham
Birmingham
Birmingham is a city and metropolitan borough in the West Midlands of England. It is the most populous British city outside the capital London, with a population of 1,036,900 , and lies at the heart of the West Midlands conurbation, the second most populous urban area in the United Kingdom with a...

 and Walsall
Walsall
Walsall is a large industrial town in the West Midlands of England. It is located northwest of Birmingham and east of Wolverhampton. Historically a part of Staffordshire, Walsall is a component area of the West Midlands conurbation and part of the Black Country.Walsall is the administrative...

 and was built to alleviate congestion
Traffic congestion
Traffic congestion is a condition on road networks that occurs as use increases, and is characterized by slower speeds, longer trip times, and increased vehicular queueing. The most common example is the physical use of roads by vehicles. When traffic demand is great enough that the interaction...

 through the West Midlands, and opened in December 2003. Prior to the opening of the toll motorway, this section of the M6 carried 180,000 vehicles per day at its busiest point near Wolverhampton
Wolverhampton
Wolverhampton is a city and metropolitan borough in the West Midlands, England. For Eurostat purposes Walsall and Wolverhampton is a NUTS 3 region and is one of five boroughs or unitary districts that comprise the "West Midlands" NUTS 2 region...

 (between the junctions with the M54
M54 motorway
The M54 is a 23 mile east-west motorway in the English counties of Shropshire and Staffordshire. It is also referred to as the Telford Motorway, after the road's primary westbound destination, the new town of Telford...

 and M5
M5 motorway
The M5 is a motorway in England. It runs from a junction with the M6 at West Bromwich near Birmingham to Exeter in Devon. Heading south-west, the M5 runs east of West Bromwich and west of Birmingham through Sandwell Valley...

 motorways), compared with a design capacity of only 72,000 vehicles. Usage, at about 50,000 vehicles was lower than expected and traffic levels on the M6 were only slightly reduced as a result. The high toll prices which were set by the operating company and about which the UK government has no influence were blamed for the low usage. Much traffic continues to use the M6 or the continued on the M1 and took the A50
A50 road
The A50 is a major trunk road in England. It runs from Warrington to Leicester; however, it was once a much longer route.-Current route:...

 or A52
A52 road
The A52 is a major road in the East Midlands, England. It runs east from the junction with the A53 at Newcastle-under-Lyme near Stoke-on-Trent via Ashbourne, Derby, Stapleford, Nottingham, West Bridgford, Bingham, Grantham, Boston and Skegness before terminating on the east Lincolnshire coast at...

.

A proposed extension to the M6 Toll, known as the 'M6 Expressway
M6 Toll
The M6 Toll , connects M6 Junction 4 at the NEC to M6 Junction 11A at Wolverhampton with of six-lane motorway. The weekday cash cost is £5.30 for a car and £10.60 for a HGV...

' would have continued from the M6 Toll as far as Knutsford
Knutsford
Knutsford is a town and civil parish in the unitary authority area of Cheshire East and the ceremonial county of Cheshire, in North West England...

, at which point much of the existing M6 traffic leaves the M6 for Manchester
Manchester
Manchester is a city and metropolitan borough in Greater Manchester, England. According to the Office for National Statistics, the 2010 mid-year population estimate for Manchester was 498,800. Manchester lies within one of the UK's largest metropolitan areas, the metropolitan county of Greater...

 was abandoned in 2006 due to excessive costs, anticipated construction problems and disappointing levels of usage of the M6 Toll.

Increased capacity between J11a and J19

The government wishes to improve reliability and capacity between Junctions 11 by Cannock
Cannock
Cannock is the most populous of three towns in the district of Cannock Chase in the central southern part of the county of Staffordshire in the West Midlands region of England....

 and Junction 19 near Knutsford
Knutsford
Knutsford is a town and civil parish in the unitary authority area of Cheshire East and the ceremonial county of Cheshire, in North West England...

. In 2004, it favoured a new motorway, 'The Expressway' following a roughly parallel course to the existing M6. In July 2006, the government announced its decision to abandon the Expressway proposal, and favoured widening accompanied by demand-management measures, and have launched a study to consider options for providing additional capacity. The first phase of the widening could be completed by 2014, with the remaining sections following until full completion in 2017.

Hard shoulder running (junction 4-5 and 8 to 10a)

In October 2007, following a successful trial on the M42
M42 motorway
The M42 motorway is a major road in England. The motorway runs north east from Bromsgrove in Worcestershire to just south west of Ashby-de-la-Zouch in Leicestershire, passing Redditch, Solihull, the National Exhibition Centre and Tamworth on the way. The section between the M40 and M6 road forms...

 in the West Midlands, the UK government have announced that two stretches of the M6 will be upgraded to allow the hard shoulder to be used as a normal running lane during busy conditions under a scheme called Active Traffic Management
Active Traffic Management
Active traffic management , also known as managed lanes or smart lanes, is a scheme for improving traffic flow and reducing congestion on motorways. It has been implemented in several countries, including Germany, the United Kingdom, and the United States...

. The two stretches, between junctions 4 and 5 and between junctions 10a and 8, are two of the busiest sections on the entire motorway. The system could also be extended onto other stretches of the M6 as the government is going to undertake a feasibility study to determine other likely locations where this technology can be used.

Junction with M1 and A14

The Highways Agency is planning a major upgrade to the overloaded interchange between the M6, the M1 motorway
M1 motorway
The M1 is a north–south motorway in England primarily connecting London to Leeds, where it joins the A1 near Aberford. While the M1 is considered to be the first inter-urban motorway to be completed in the United Kingdom, the first road to be built to motorway standard in the country was the...

 and the A14 road at Catthorpe
Catthorpe
Catthorpe is a village and civil parish in the Harborough district of Leicestershire, England. It is close to the A5 road which forms the border with Warwickshire - the nearest town is Rugby, about four miles south-west. The parish had a population of 179 according to the 2001 census. The parish...

.

Junctions

Data
from driver location signs
Driver location signs
Driver location signs are English highway route markers, first introduced in 2003, that complement distance marker posts. Both types of marker post display the distances from a nominal start point in kilometres...

 are used to provide distance and carriageway identifier information. Where a junction spans several hundred metres and the start and end distances are known, both distances are shown.
M6 Motorway
km Northbound exits (A Carriageway) Junction Southbound exits (B Carriageway)
M6 continues as A74(M) to Glasgow
Glasgow
Glasgow is the largest city in Scotland and third most populous in the United Kingdom. The city is situated on the River Clyde in the country's west central lowlands...

, Edinburgh
Edinburgh
Edinburgh is the capital city of Scotland, the second largest city in Scotland, and the eighth most populous in the United Kingdom. The City of Edinburgh Council governs one of Scotland's 32 local government council areas. The council area includes urban Edinburgh and a rural area...

504.1 Gretna (Green) B7076
Longtown A6071
M6 J45
54.9975°N 3.0562°W - J45 A74(M)
No access
Todhills Rest Area
Todhills Rest Area
Todhills Rest Area is a rest area in between Junctions 44-45 of the M6. It is the last Services Northbound on the M6 and the first Southbound. Todhills is not classed as a Service Station because its only got one shop. Both sides has fuel stations and southbound contains a hotel. Here's a list of...

Services Todhills rest area
495.1 494.6 Carlisle (North), Galashiels
Galashiels
Galashiels is a burgh in the Scottish Borders, on the Gala Water river. The name is often shortened to "Gala" .Galashiels is a major commercial centre for the Scottish Borders...

, Hawick
Hawick
Hawick is a town in the Scottish Borders of south east Scotland. It is south-west of Jedburgh and south-southeast of Selkirk. It is one of the farthest towns from the sea in Scotland, in the heart of Teviotdale, and the biggest town in the former county of Roxburghshire. Hawick's architecture is...

 A7
J44
54.93013°N 2.94643°W J44
Hexham A689
Workington (A595), Carlisle A7
488.9
488.4
Carlisle, Hexham
Hexham
Hexham is a market town and civil parish in Northumberland, England, located south of the River Tyne, and was the administrative centre for the Tynedale district from 1974 to 2009. The three major towns in Tynedale were Hexham, Prudhoe and Haltwhistle, although in terms of population, Prudhoe was...

, Newcastle upon Tyne
Newcastle upon Tyne
Newcastle upon Tyne is a city and metropolitan borough of Tyne and Wear, in North East England. Historically a part of Northumberland, it is situated on the north bank of the River Tyne...

 A69
J43 Carlisle, Hexham, Newcastle upon Tyne A69
484.6
484.0
Carlisle (South) A6 J42 Carlisle (South) A6
Southwaite services Services Southwaite services
464.6
464.1
Wigton
Wigton
Wigton is a small market town and civil parish outside the Lake District, in the administrative county of Cumbria in England, and traditionally in Cumberland. It is the bustling and thriving centre of the Solway Plain, situated between the Caldbeck Fells and the Solway coast...

 B5305
J41 Wigton B5305
459.5
459.0
Penrith
Penrith, Cumbria
Penrith was an urban district between 1894 and 1974, when it was merged into Eden District.The authority's area was coterminous with the civil parish of Penrith although when the council was abolished Penrith became an unparished area....

, Workington
Workington
Workington is a town, civil parish and port on the west coast of Cumbria, England, at the mouth of the River Derwent. Lying within the Borough of Allerdale, Workington is southwest of Carlisle, west of Cockermouth, and southwest of Maryport...

, Keswick
Keswick, Cumbria
Keswick is a market town and civil parish within the Borough of Allerdale in Cumbria, England. It had a population of 4,984, according to the 2001 census, and is situated just north of Derwent Water, and a short distance from Bassenthwaite Lake, both in the Lake District National Park...

 A66
J40 Penrith, Keswick, Brough
Brough, Cumbria
Brough, sometimes known as Brough under Stainmore, is a village and civil parish in the Eden district of Cumbria, England, on the western fringe of the Pennines near Stainmore. The village is on the A66 trans-Pennine road, and the Swindale Beck, and is about south east of Appleby-in-Westmorland...

, Scotch Corner
Scotch Corner
Scotch Corner is an important junction of the A1 and A66 trunk roads near Richmond, North Yorkshire, England. It has been described as "the modern gateway to Cumbria, the North East and Scotland".-Geography:...

 A66
441.6
441.0
Shap, Kendal
Kendal
Kendal, anciently known as Kirkby in Kendal or Kirkby Kendal, is a market town and civil parish within the South Lakeland District of Cumbria, England...

 (A6)
J39 Shap (A6)
Tebay services
Westmorland services
Tebay Services are a pair of privately-run motorway service stations on the M6 motorway in Cumbria, England.-History:...

Services Tebay services
432.7
432.1
Brough A685
A685 road
The A685 is a road in Cumbria, England, that runs 28 miles from Kendal to Brough.-Route:The A685 begins in Kendal town centre off the A6. It heads in a north-easterly direction to the village of Tebay and junction 38 of the M6 motorway. From the M6 the A685 has primary status as it heads in an...

 
Appleby
Appleby-in-Westmorland
Appleby-in-Westmorland is a town and civil parish in Cumbria, in North West England. It is situated within a loop of the River Eden and has a population of approximately 2,500. It is in the historic county of Westmorland, of which it was the county town. The town's name was simply Appleby, until...

 B6260
J38 Kendal, Brough A685
418.9
418.4
Kendal, Sedbergh
Sedbergh
Sedbergh is a small town in Cumbria, England. It lies about east of Kendal and about north of Kirkby Lonsdale. The town sits just within the Yorkshire Dales National Park...

 A684
A684 road
The A684 is an A road that runs through Cumbria and North Yorkshire, starting at Kendal, Cumbria and ending at Ellerbeck and the A19 road in North Yorkshire...

J37 Kendal, Sedbergh A684
No access Services Killington Lake services
406.7
406.0
Kirkby Lonsdale
Kirkby Lonsdale
Kirkby Lonsdale is a small town and civil parish in the South Lakeland district of Cumbria, England, on the River Lune. Historically within Westmorland, it is situated south east of Kendal along the A65. The parish had a population of 1,771 recorded in the 2001 census.Notable buildings include St...

, Skipton
Skipton
Skipton is a market town and civil parish within the Craven district of North Yorkshire, England. It is located along the course of both the Leeds and Liverpool Canal and the River Aire, on the south side of the Yorkshire Dales, northwest of Bradford and west of York...

 A65 
Kendal
Kendal
Kendal, anciently known as Kirkby in Kendal or Kirkby Kendal, is a market town and civil parish within the South Lakeland District of Cumbria, England...

, Barrow-in-Furness
Barrow-in-Furness
Barrow-in-Furness is an industrial town and seaport which forms about half the territory of the wider Borough of Barrow-in-Furness in the county of Cumbria, England. It lies north of Liverpool, northwest of Manchester and southwest from the county town of Carlisle...

 A590
A590 road
The A590 is a trunk road in southern Cumbria, in the north-west of England. It runs north-east to south-west from M6 junction 36, through the towns of Ulverston and Barrow-in-Furness to terminate at Vickerstown on Walney Island. The road is a mixture of dual carriageway and single carriageway,...

J36 Kirkby Lonsdale, Skipton A65
Barrow-in-Furness A590
Burton-in-Kendal services
Burton-in-Kendal services
Burton-in-Kendal services is a motorway service station on the M6 motorway near Kendal in southern Cumbria, England. It is accessible to northbound traffic only, with southbound traffic having to use Killington Lake services about ten miles north...

Services No access
394.4
393.6
Carnforth
Carnforth
- References :...

, Morecambe
Morecambe
Morecambe is a resort town and civil parish within the City of Lancaster in Lancashire, England. As of 2001 it has a resident population of 38,917. It faces into Morecambe Bay...

 A601(M)
A601(M) motorway
The A601 is a motorway in Lancashire, England. It is 1.1 miles long, and meets the M6 at Junction 35. It is a unique motorway within the United Kingdom as it has a dual carriageway section leading north from Junction 35 of the M6, with a single carriageway section leading south, where it...

 (A6)
J35 Carnforth, Morecambe A601(M) (A6)
387.6
387.2
Lancaster, Morecambe
Morecambe
Morecambe is a resort town and civil parish within the City of Lancaster in Lancashire, England. As of 2001 it has a resident population of 38,917. It faces into Morecambe Bay...

, Kirkby Lonsdale
Kirkby Lonsdale
Kirkby Lonsdale is a small town and civil parish in the South Lakeland district of Cumbria, England, on the River Lune. Historically within Westmorland, it is situated south east of Kendal along the A65. The parish had a population of 1,771 recorded in the 2001 census.Notable buildings include St...

, Heysham
Heysham
Heysham is a large coastal village near Lancaster in the county of Lancashire, England. Overlooking Morecambe Bay, it is a ferry port with services to the Isle of Man and Ireland. Heysham is the site of two nuclear power stations which are landmarks visible from hills in the surrounding area...

 A683
J34 Lancaster, Morecambe A683
377.6
377.1
Lancaster A6 J33 Garstang
Garstang
Garstang is a town and civil parish within the Wyre borough of Lancashire, England. It is ten miles north-northwest of the city of Preston and eleven miles south of Lancaster, and had a total resident population of 4,074 in 2001....

, Fleetwood
Fleetwood
Fleetwood is a town within the Wyre district of Lancashire, England, lying at the northwest corner of the Fylde. It had a population of 26,840 people at the 2001 Census. It forms part of the Greater Blackpool conurbation. The town was the first planned community of the Victorian era...

 A6
Lancaster (Forton) services
Lancaster (Forton) services
Lancaster services is a motorway service station, between junctions 32 and 33 of the M6 motorway in England. The nearest city is Lancaster, about seven miles to the north. The station is operated by Moto....

Services Lancaster (Forton) services
356.5
355.7
Blackpool
Blackpool
Blackpool is a borough, seaside town, and unitary authority area of Lancashire, in North West England. It is situated along England's west coast by the Irish Sea, between the Ribble and Wyre estuaries, northwest of Preston, north of Liverpool, and northwest of Manchester...

, Fleetwood
Fleetwood
Fleetwood is a town within the Wyre district of Lancashire, England, lying at the northwest corner of the Fylde. It had a population of 26,840 people at the 2001 Census. It forms part of the Greater Blackpool conurbation. The town was the first planned community of the Victorian era...

, Preston (North), Garstang M55
M55 motorway
The M55 is a motorway in Lancashire, England, which can also be referred to as the Preston Northern Bypass. It connects the seaside resort of Blackpool to the M6 at Preston. It is 11.4 miles in length.-Route:...

J32
53.80712°N 2.69791°W J32 M55
Blackpool, Preston (North) M55
353.2
352.9
Preston (West), Longridge
Longridge
Longridge is a small town and civil parish in the borough of Ribble Valley in Lancashire, England. It is situated north-east of the city of Preston, at the western end of Longridge Fell, a long ridge above the River Ribble. Its nearest neighbours are Grimsargh and the Roman town of Ribchester , ...

 B6242
J31A No access
Preston (Central), Clitheroe
Clitheroe
Clitheroe is a town and civil parish in the Borough of Ribble Valley in Lancashire, England. It is 1½ miles from the Forest of Bowland and is often used as a base for tourists in the area. It has a population of 14,697...

 A59
A59 road
The A59 is a major road in the United Kingdom that runs from Liverpool in Merseyside, to York in North Yorkshire.-Merseyside:The A59 begins in the centre of Liverpool at the mouth of the Birkenhead Tunnel, and heads north out of the city, first as Scotland Road in Vauxhall, then Kirkdale Road,...

J31 Preston (Central), Clitheroe A59
346.6
345.9
No access J30 Manchester
Manchester
Manchester is a city and metropolitan borough in Greater Manchester, England. According to the Office for National Statistics, the 2010 mid-year population estimate for Manchester was 498,800. Manchester lies within one of the UK's largest metropolitan areas, the metropolitan county of Greater...

, Bolton
Bolton
Bolton is a town in Greater Manchester, in the North West of England. Close to the West Pennine Moors, it is north west of the city of Manchester. Bolton is surrounded by several smaller towns and villages which together form the Metropolitan Borough of Bolton, of which Bolton is the...

 M61
M61 motorway
The M61 motorway is a motorway in North West England. It runs from the M60 motorway northwest of Manchester and heads northwest past Bolton and Chorley to join the M6 just north of the junction between the M6 and M65 motorways to the south of Preston....

 
Leeds
Leeds
Leeds is a city and metropolitan borough in West Yorkshire, England. In 2001 Leeds' main urban subdivision had a population of 443,247, while the entire city has a population of 798,800 , making it the 30th-most populous city in the European Union.Leeds is the cultural, financial and commercial...

 (M62
M62 motorway
The M62 motorway is a west–east trans-Pennine motorway in Northern England, connecting the cities of Liverpool and Hull via Manchester and Leeds. The road also forms part of the unsigned Euroroutes E20 and E22...

)
Blackburn (M65
M65 motorway
The M65 is a motorway in Lancashire, England. It runs from just south of Preston through the major junction of the M6 and M61 motorways, east past Darwen, Blackburn, Accrington, Burnley, Nelson and ends at Colne.-History:...

)
344.3
343.6
Burnley
Burnley
Burnley is a market town in the Burnley borough of Lancashire, England, with a population of around 73,500. It lies north of Manchester and east of Preston, at the confluence of the River Calder and River Brun....

, Blackburn, Preston (South) M65
J29 Burnley, Blackburn, Preston (South) M65
341.6
341.0
Leyland
Leyland, Lancashire
Leyland is a town in the South Ribble borough of Lancashire, England, approximately six miles south of the city of Preston.Throughout the 20th and 21st century, the community has seen a large growth in industry, population and farming, due to the establishment of Leyland Motors, housing...

 (A49)
J28 Leyland (A49)
Charnock Richard services
Charnock Richard services
Charnock Richard services is a motorway service station, between junctions 27 and 28 of the M6 motorway in England. It was the first service station to open on the M6 motorway when it opened in 1963. It is operated by Welcome Break....

Services Charnock Richard services
329..6
329.0
Parbold
Parbold
Parbold is a large commuter village and civil parish in the county of Lancashire, England.-Local government:The 83 hectares of the 'urban settlement' of Parbold has a population of 2,700. This settlement forms part of the larger Parbold ward Parbold is a large commuter village and civil parish in...

, Standish
Standish, Greater Manchester
Standish is a village within the Metropolitan Borough of Wigan, in Greater Manchester, England. It is located on the A49 road between the towns of Chorley and Wigan, a short distance from Junction 27 of the M6 motorway....

, Chorley
Chorley
Chorley is a market town in Lancashire, in North West England. It is the largest settlement in the Borough of Chorley. The town's wealth came principally from the cotton industry...

 A5209
J27 Parbold, Standish, Wigan
Wigan
Wigan is a town in Greater Manchester, England. It stands on the River Douglas, south-west of Bolton, north of Warrington and west-northwest of Manchester. Wigan is the largest settlement in the Metropolitan Borough of Wigan and is its administrative centre. The town of Wigan had a total...

 A5209
323.1
322.6
Wigan, Skelmersdale
Skelmersdale
Skelmersdale is a town in West Lancashire, England. It lies on high-ground on the River Tawd, to the west of Wigan, to the northeast of Liverpool, south-southwest of Preston. As of 2006, Skelmersdale had a population of 38,813, down from 41,000 in 2004. The town is known locally as Skem.The...

, Liverpool
Liverpool
Liverpool is a city and metropolitan borough of Merseyside, England, along the eastern side of the Mersey Estuary. It was founded as a borough in 1207 and was granted city status in 1880...

, Southport
Southport
Southport is a seaside town in the Metropolitan Borough of Sefton in Merseyside, England. During the 2001 census Southport was recorded as having a population of 90,336, making it the eleventh most populous settlement in North West England...

 M58
M58 motorway
The M58 is a motorway passing through Merseyside and Lancashire, terminating in Greater Manchester, England. It is 12 miles long and provides a link between the M6 motorway and the area north of Liverpool.-Route:...

J26 Wigan, Skelmersdale, Liverpool, Southport M58
318.7
318.3
Ashton-in-Makerfield, Wigan, A49 J25 No access
316.9
316.3
No access J24 Ashton-in-Makerfield, St. Helens
St Helens, Merseyside
St Helens is a large town in Merseyside, England. It is the largest settlement and administrative centre of the Metropolitan Borough of St Helens with a population of just over 100,000, part of an urban area with a total population of 176,843 at the time of the 2001 Census...

 A58
A58 road
The A58 is a major road in northern England that runs between Prescot, Merseyside and Wetherby, West Yorkshire.It runs north east from Prescot on the outskirts of Liverpool via St Helens, Ashton-in-Makerfield, Hindley, Westhoughton, Bolton, Bury, Heywood, Rochdale and Littleborough then over the...

314.8
314.1
Haydock
Haydock
Haydock is a village within the Metropolitan Borough of St Helens, in Merseyside, England. It contains all of the Haydock electoral ward and a section of the Blackbrook electoral ward. The village is located roughly mid-way between Liverpool and Manchester, close to the junction of the M6 motorway...

, Ashton-in-Makerfield
Ashton-in-Makerfield
Ashton-in-Makerfield is a town in the Metropolitan Borough of Wigan, Greater Manchester. It is situated south of Wigan, north-northwest of Warrington and west of the city of Manchester. In 2001 it had a population of 28,505....

, St Helens, Manchester, Liverpool, Newton-le-Willows
Newton-le-Willows
Newton-le-Willows is a small market town within the Metropolitan Borough of St Helens, in Merseyside, England. Historically a part of Lancashire, it is situated about midway between the cities of Manchester and Liverpool, to the east of St Helens, to the north of Warrington and to the south of...

 A580
A580 road
The A580 is a primary A road in England that connects Walton, near Liverpool and Salford, near Manchester and known officially as Liverpool-East Lancashire Road. Locally, the road is shortened to the "East Lancs". The road was designed and built to provide better access to the Port of Liverpool for...

J23 Haydock, Ashton-in-Makerfield, St Helens, Manchester, Liverpool, Newton-le-Willows A580
309.6
309.1
Newton-le-Willows A49 Leigh A579 J22 Warrington
Warrington
Warrington is a town, borough and unitary authority area of Cheshire, England. It stands on the banks of the River Mersey, which is tidal to the west of the weir at Howley. It lies 16 miles east of Liverpool, 19 miles west of Manchester and 8 miles south of St Helens...

 A49
307.4
306.5
Manchester, Leeds M62
M62 motorway
The M62 motorway is a west–east trans-Pennine motorway in Northern England, connecting the cities of Liverpool and Hull via Manchester and Leeds. The road also forms part of the unsigned Euroroutes E20 and E22...

J21A Liverpool, Southport
Southport
Southport is a seaside town in the Metropolitan Borough of Sefton in Merseyside, England. During the 2001 census Southport was recorded as having a population of 90,336, making it the eleventh most populous settlement in North West England...

 M62
Liverpool, Southport
Southport
Southport is a seaside town in the Metropolitan Borough of Sefton in Merseyside, England. During the 2001 census Southport was recorded as having a population of 90,336, making it the eleventh most populous settlement in North West England...

 M62
Manchester, Leeds M62
303.0
302.5
Warrington, Irlam
Irlam
Irlam is a suburban town and unparished area within the City of Salford in Greater Manchester, England. At the 2001 census it had a population of 18,504. The town lies on flat ground on the south side of the M62 motorway and the north bank of the Manchester Ship Canal, and is west-southwest of...

 A57
A57 road
The A57 is a major road in England. It runs east from Liverpool to Lincoln, via Warrington, Cadishead, Irlam, Patricroft, Eccles, Salford and Manchester, then through the Pennines over the Snake Pass , around the Ladybower Reservoir, through Sheffield and past Worksop...

J21 Warrington, Irlam A57
Thelwall Viaduct
Thelwall Viaduct
The Thelwall Viaduct is a steel composite girder viaduct in Thelwall, Warrington, England. It carries the M6 motorway across the Manchester Ship Canal and the River Mersey...


53.3906°N 2.5059°W Thelwell Viaduct
298.7
298.2
Lymm
Lymm
Lymm is a large village and civil parish within the Warrington borough of Cheshire, in North West England. Lymm was an urban district of Cheshire from 1894 to 1974. The civil parish of Lymm incorporates the hamlets of Booths Hill, Broomedge, Church Green, Deansgreen, Heatley, Heatley Heath, Little...

, Macclesfield
Macclesfield
Macclesfield is a market town within the unitary authority of Cheshire East, the county palatine of Chester, also known as the ceremonial county of Cheshire, England. The population of the Macclesfield urban sub-area at the time of the 2001 census was 50,688...

 A50
Lymm Services
J20
Services
Lymm, Macclesfield A50
Lymm Services
NORTH WALES
North Wales
North Wales is the northernmost unofficial region of Wales. It is bordered to the south by the counties of Ceredigion and Powys in Mid Wales and to the east by the counties of Shropshire in the West Midlands and Cheshire in North West England...

, Runcorn
Runcorn
Runcorn is an industrial town and cargo port within the borough of Halton in the ceremonial county of Cheshire, England. In 2009, its population was estimated to be 61,500. The town is on the southern bank of the River Mersey where the estuary narrows to form Runcorn Gap. Directly to the north...

, Birkenhead
Birkenhead
Birkenhead is a town within the Metropolitan Borough of Wirral in Merseyside, England. It is on the Wirral Peninsula, along the west bank of the River Mersey, opposite the city of Liverpool...

 M56
M56 motorway
The M56 Motorway, also known as the North Cheshire motorway, is in Cheshire and Greater Manchester, England. It runs from Junction 4 of the M60 to Dunkirk, Cheshire and is in length. It is often busy with long-distance commuter traffic towards North Wales...

NORTH WALES, Chester
Chester
Chester is a city in Cheshire, England. Lying on the River Dee, close to the border with Wales, it is home to 77,040 inhabitants, and is the largest and most populous settlement of the wider unitary authority area of Cheshire West and Chester, which had a population of 328,100 according to the...

, Manchester & Airport, Stockport
Stockport
Stockport is a town in Greater Manchester, England. It lies on elevated ground southeast of Manchester city centre, at the point where the rivers Goyt and Tame join and create the River Mersey. Stockport is the largest settlement in the metropolitan borough of the same name...

 M56
290.2
289.5
Manchester & Airport, Stockport A556 (M56 (west)) J19 Northwich
Northwich
Northwich is a town and civil parish in the unitary authority of Cheshire West and Chester and the ceremonial county of Cheshire, England. It lies in the heart of the Cheshire Plain, at the confluence of the rivers Weaver and Dane...

, Knutsford
Knutsford
Knutsford is a town and civil parish in the unitary authority area of Cheshire East and the ceremonial county of Cheshire, in North West England...

, Macclesfield
Macclesfield
Macclesfield is a market town within the unitary authority of Cheshire East, the county palatine of Chester, also known as the ceremonial county of Cheshire, England. The population of the Macclesfield urban sub-area at the time of the 2001 census was 50,688...

 A556
Knutsford services
Knutsford services
Knutsford services is a motorway service station on the M6 in Cheshire-History:Opened in 1963, Knutsford was one of the country's first motorway service stations. As with many services of the time, there are two sites located on either side of the carriageway, linked by a bridge which features a...

 
(no HGVs)
Services Knutsford services
(no HGVs)
277.2
276.7
Holmes Chapel
Holmes Chapel
Holmes Chapel is a village and civil parish in the unitary authority of Cheshire East and the ceremonial county of Cheshire, England. Until 1974 the parish was known as Church Hulme.At the 2001 Census the population of the village was recorded as 5,669...

, Middlewich
Middlewich
Middlewich is a market town in the unitary authority of Cheshire East and the ceremonial county of Cheshire, England. It is east of the city of Chester, east of Winsford, southeast of Northwich and northwest of Sandbach....

, Winsford
Winsford
Winsford is a town and civil parish within the unitary authority of Cheshire West and Chester and the ceremonial county of Cheshire, England. It lies on the River Weaver south of Northwich and west of Middlewich, and grew around the salt mining industry after the river was canalised in the...

, Northwich, Chester A54
A54 road
The A54 road is a road linking Chester in Cheshire, England with Buxton in Derbyshire. The road follows the route:*Chester*Winsford*Middlewich*Holmes Chapel*Congleton*Buxton...

J18 Holmes Chapel, Middlewich, Winsford A54
271.3
270.8
Congleton
Congleton
Congleton is a town and civil parish in the unitary authority of Cheshire East and the ceremonial county of Cheshire, England, on the banks of the River Dane, to the west of the Macclesfield Canal and 21 miles south of Manchester. It has a population of 25,750.-History:The first settlements in...

, Sandbach
Sandbach
Sandbach is a market town and civil parish in the unitary authority of Cheshire East and the ceremonial county of Cheshire, England. The civil parish contains four settlements; Sandbach itself, Elworth, Ettiley Heath and Wheelock....

 A534
J17 Congleton, Sandbach A534
Sandbach services
Sandbach services
Sandbach services is a motorway service station on the M6 in Cheshire. In August 2011 it was rated as 3 stars by quality assessors at Visit England.- History :...

Services Sandbach services
261.7
261.2
Stoke-on-Trent, Crewe
Crewe
Crewe is a railway town within the unitary authority area of Cheshire East and the ceremonial county of Cheshire, England. According to the 2001 census the urban area had a population of 67,683...

, Nantwich
Nantwich
Nantwich is a market town and civil parish in the Borough of Cheshire East and the ceremonial county of Cheshire, England. The town gives its name to the parliamentary constituency of Crewe and Nantwich...

 A500
A500 road
The A500 is a major primary A road in Staffordshire and Cheshire, England. It is dual carriageway for most of its length and connects Nantwich, junctions 16 and 15 of the M6 motorway with the city of Stoke-on-Trent...

J16 Newcastle-under-Lyme
Newcastle-under-Lyme
Newcastle-under-Lyme is a market town in Staffordshire, England, and is the principal town of the Borough of Newcastle-under-Lyme. It is part of The Potteries Urban Area and North Staffordshire. In the 2001 census the town had a population of 73,944...

, Stoke-on-Trent, Crewe, Nantwich A500
Keele services Services Keele services
246.4
246.1
Stoke-on-Trent, Newcastle-under-Lyme A500 J15 Stoke-on-Trent, Stone
Stone, Staffordshire
Stone is an old market town in Staffordshire, England, situated about seven miles north of Stafford, and around seven miles south of the city of Stoke-on-Trent. It is the second town, after Stafford itself, in the Borough of Stafford, and has long been of importance from the point of view of...

, Eccleshall
Eccleshall
Eccleshall is a town in Staffordshire, England. It is located seven miles north west of Stafford, and six miles west of Stone. Eccleshall is twinned with Sancerre in France.-History:...

 A500
Derby
Derby
Derby , is a city and unitary authority in the East Midlands region of England. It lies upon the banks of the River Derwent and is located in the south of the ceremonial county of Derbyshire. In the 2001 census, the population of the city was 233,700, whilst that of the Derby Urban Area was 229,407...

 (A50)
Stafford services
Stafford services
Stafford services is a pair of motorway service station on the M6 motorway near Stone, Staffordshire, England. In August 2011 it was rated as 4 stars Stafford services is a pair of motorway service station on the M6 motorway near Stone, Staffordshire, England. In August 2011 it was rated as 4 stars...

Services Stafford services
228.6
228.2
Stafford
Stafford
Stafford is the county town of Staffordshire, in the West Midlands region of England. It lies approximately north of Wolverhampton and south of Stoke-on-Trent, adjacent to the M6 motorway Junction 13 to Junction 14...

, Stone, Eccleshall A34
J14 Stafford (North) A34
220.1
219.6
Stafford A449
A449 road
The A449 is a major road in the United Kingdom. It runs north from junction 24 of the M4 motorway at Newport in South Wales to Stafford in Staffordshire....

J13 Stafford (South & Central) A449
211.8
211.1
Telford
Telford
Telford is a large new town in the borough of Telford and Wrekin and ceremonial county of Shropshire, England, approximately east of Shrewsbury, and west of Birmingham...

 A5
J12 NORTH WALES, Cannock
Cannock
Cannock is the most populous of three towns in the district of Cannock Chase in the central southern part of the county of Staffordshire in the West Midlands region of England....

, Wolverhampton
Wolverhampton
Wolverhampton is a city and metropolitan borough in the West Midlands, England. For Eurostat purposes Walsall and Wolverhampton is a NUTS 3 region and is one of five boroughs or unitary districts that comprise the "West Midlands" NUTS 2 region...

, Telford A5 (M54
M54 motorway
The M54 is a 23 mile east-west motorway in the English counties of Shropshire and Staffordshire. It is also referred to as the Telford Motorway, after the road's primary westbound destination, the new town of Telford...

)
No access J11A
52.6682°N 2.0716°W J11 - M6 Toll
The SOUTH
The South
-Geography:* Southern United States* South of England* South of France* South Italy* South Korea* Republic of Ireland* South Province * Global South, the developing nations of the world-Other uses:* The South , by Victor Erice...

, Lichfield
Lichfield
Lichfield is a cathedral city, civil parish and district in Staffordshire, England. One of eight civil parishes with city status in England, Lichfield is situated roughly north of Birmingham...

 M6 Toll
207.2
206.7
Cannock A460 J11 Wolverhampton A460
Hilton Park services
Hilton Park services
Hilton Park services is a motorway service station, between junctions 10a and 11 of the M6 motorway in Staffordshire, England. The nearest city is Wolverhampton.-History:...

Services Hilton Park services
204.4
203.9
NORTH WALES, Wolverhampton, Telford M54 J10A
52.6293°N 2.0479°W J10A - M54
No access
198.4
197.8
Walsall
Walsall
Walsall is a large industrial town in the West Midlands of England. It is located northwest of Birmingham and east of Wolverhampton. Historically a part of Staffordshire, Walsall is a component area of the West Midlands conurbation and part of the Black Country.Walsall is the administrative...

, Wolverhampton A454
A454 road
The A454 is a major road in England. Starting from Bridgnorth, Shropshire, it runs eastwards, crossing a narrow part of Staffordshire, to Wolverhampton, West Midlands. It then by-passes Willenhall where it becomes the eastern section of "The Black Country Route" before meeting the M6 motorway at...

J10 Walsall A454
195.8
195.6
Wednesbury
Wednesbury
Wednesbury is a market town in England's Black Country, part of the Sandwell metropolitan borough in West Midlands, near the source of the River Tame. Similarly to the word Wednesday, it is pronounced .-Pre-Medieval and Medieval times:...

 A461
A461 road
The A461 is a main road in Great Britain that links Lichfield in Staffordshire, with Stourbridge, West Midlands, passing through Walsall & Dudley.-Places along the route:* Lichfield* Walsall* M6 motorway * Wednesbury* Tipton* Great Bridge...

J9 Wednesbury A461
193.0 The SOUTH WEST, Birmingham (West), West Bromwich
West Bromwich
West Bromwich is a town within the Metropolitan Borough of Sandwell, in the West Midlands, England. It is north west of Birmingham lying on the A41 London-to-Birkenhead road. West Bromwich is part of the Black Country...

 M5
M5 motorway
The M5 is a motorway in England. It runs from a junction with the M6 at West Bromwich near Birmingham to Exeter in Devon. Heading south-west, the M5 runs east of West Bromwich and west of Birmingham through Sandwell Valley...

J8
52.548°N 1.965°WJ8 - Start of M5 motorway
The SOUTH WEST, Birmingham, West Bromwich M5
190.6
190.1
Birmingham (NW), Walsall A34 J7
52.5530°N 1.9338°W J7
Birmingham A34
183.8
183.3
Birmingham (Central & North) A38(M)
A38(M) motorway
The A38, also known as the Aston Expressway, is a motorway in Birmingham, England. It is long and was opened on 24 May 1972. It forms part of the much longer A38 route....

 
Sutton Coldfield
Sutton Coldfield
Sutton Coldfield is a suburb of Birmingham, in the West Midlands of England. Sutton is located about from central Birmingham but has borders with Erdington and Kingstanding. Sutton is in the northeast of Birmingham, with a population of 105,000 recorded in the 2001 census...

 A5127
A5127 road
The A5127 is a major road in England which runs between Birmingham and Lichfield, Staffordshire. For much of the route the road follows the old route of the A38 which has since been moved in order to by-pass places such as Erdington and Sutton Coldfield and form a relief road from Birmingham city...

J6
Gravelly Hill Interchange
Gravelly Hill Interchange
Gravelly Hill Interchange, better known by its nickname Spaghetti Junction, is junction 6 of the M6 motorway where it meets the A38 Aston Expressway in Birmingham, England.- Overview :...


52.511°N 1.866°W J6 - Gravelly Hill Interchange
Birmingham A38(M) & A38
178.5
178.3
Birmingham (NE), Castle Bromwich
Castle Bromwich
Castle Bromwich is a suburb situated within the northern part of the Metropolitan Borough of Solihull in the English county of West Midlands. It is bordered by the rest of the borough to the south east, North Warwickshire to the east and north east; also Shard End to the south west, Castle Vale,...

 A452
A452 road
The A452 is a road in England, which runs from Leamington Spa, Warwickshire to Brownhills in Staffordshire. It is the major link to the M6 motorway for both Leamington and Warwick in addition to serving as Leamington's link to the M40 motorway and to Coventry....

J5
52.5093°N 1.7888°W J5
No access
175.1
174.8
No access J4A The NORTH
The North
The North may refer to:* a geographical section of the world * the wealthy and technologically advanced nations of the world, as contrasted with the nations comprising the South...

 (M1
M1 motorway
The M1 is a north–south motorway in England primarily connecting London to Leeds, where it joins the A1 near Aberford. While the M1 is considered to be the first inter-urban motorway to be completed in the United Kingdom, the first road to be built to motorway standard in the country was the...

)
The SOUTH
The South
-Geography:* Southern United States* South of England* South of France* South Italy* South Korea* Republic of Ireland* South Province * Global South, the developing nations of the world-Other uses:* The South , by Victor Erice...

 (M40
M40 motorway
The M40 motorway is a motorway in the British transport network that forms a major part of the connection between London and Birmingham. Part of this road forms a section of the unsigned European route E05...

) M42
M42 motorway
The M42 motorway is a major road in England. The motorway runs north east from Bromsgrove in Worcestershire to just south west of Ashby-de-la-Zouch in Leicestershire, passing Redditch, Solihull, the National Exhibition Centre and Tamworth on the way. The section between the M40 and M6 road forms...

170.6
170.1
Lichfield
Lichfield
Lichfield is a cathedral city, civil parish and district in Staffordshire, England. One of eight civil parishes with city status in England, Lichfield is situated roughly north of Birmingham...

, Coleshill
Coleshill, Warwickshire
Coleshill is a market town in the North Warwickshire district of Warwickshire, England, taking its name from the River Cole. It has a population of 6,343 and is situated east of Birmingham.-Location:...

 A446
A446 road
The A446 is an A road in Zone 4 of the Great Britain numbering scheme.-History:The 1922 route of the A446 was Leamington - Kenilworth - Coleshill - Lichfield, which over the years has been curtailed to its current route.-Stonebridge - Bassets Pole:...

, The SOUTH WEST (M5
M5 motorway
The M5 is a motorway in England. It runs from a junction with the M6 at West Bromwich near Birmingham to Exeter in Devon. Heading south-west, the M5 runs east of West Bromwich and west of Birmingham through Sandwell Valley...

)
Birmingham (South), Solihull
Solihull
Solihull is a town in the West Midlands of England with a population of 94,753. It is a part of the West Midlands conurbation and is located 9 miles southeast of Birmingham city centre...

 M42(S)
M42 motorway
The M42 motorway is a major road in England. The motorway runs north east from Bromsgrove in Worcestershire to just south west of Ashby-de-la-Zouch in Leicestershire, passing Redditch, Solihull, the National Exhibition Centre and Tamworth on the way. The section between the M40 and M6 road forms...

J4 Coventry
Coventry
Coventry is a city and metropolitan borough in the county of West Midlands in England. Coventry is the 9th largest city in England and the 11th largest in the United Kingdom. It is also the second largest city in the English Midlands, after Birmingham, with a population of 300,848, although...

, Birmingham Airport
Birmingham International Airport (UK)
Birmingham Airport , formerly Birmingham International Airport is an airport located east southeast of Birmingham city centre, at Bickenhill in the Metropolitan Borough of Solihull within the West Midlands, England...

, NEC
National Exhibition Centre
The National Exhibition Centre is an exhibition centre in Birmingham, England. It is near junction 6 of the M42 motorway, and is adjacent to Birmingham International Airport and Birmingham International railway station. It has 20 interconnected halls, set in grounds of 628 acres making it the...

 A446
The NORTH WEST (M6 Toll
M6 Toll
The M6 Toll , connects M6 Junction 4 at the NEC to M6 Junction 11A at Wolverhampton with of six-lane motorway. The weekday cash cost is £5.30 for a car and £10.60 for a HGV...

), Tamworth
Tamworth
Tamworth is a town and local government district in Staffordshire, England, located north-east of Birmingham city centre and north-west of London. The town takes its name from the River Tame, which flows through the town, as does the River Anker...

 M42(N)
M42 motorway
The M42 motorway is a major road in England. The motorway runs north east from Bromsgrove in Worcestershire to just south west of Ashby-de-la-Zouch in Leicestershire, passing Redditch, Solihull, the National Exhibition Centre and Tamworth on the way. The section between the M40 and M6 road forms...

J3A No access
Corley services
Corley services
Corley services is a motorway service station, between junctions 3 and 4 of the M6 motorway in the English county of Warwickshire. It is close to the village of Corley, with the nearest city being Coventry...

Services Corley services
155.9
155.2
Coventry (North)
Coventry
Coventry is a city and metropolitan borough in the county of West Midlands in England. Coventry is the 9th largest city in England and the 11th largest in the United Kingdom. It is also the second largest city in the English Midlands, after Birmingham, with a population of 300,848, although...

, Nuneaton
Nuneaton
Nuneaton is the largest town in the Borough of Nuneaton and Bedworth and in the English county of Warwickshire.Nuneaton is most famous for its associations with the 19th century author George Eliot, who was born on a farm on the Arbury Estate just outside Nuneaton in 1819 and lived in the town for...

 A444, Bedworth
Bedworth
Bedworth is a market town in the Nuneaton and Bedworth district of Warwickshire, England. It lies northwest of London, east of Birmingham, and north northeast of the county town of Warwick. It is situated between Coventry, to the south, and Nuneaton, to the north.In the 2001 census the town...

 B4113
J3 Coventry (North)
Coventry
Coventry is a city and metropolitan borough in the county of West Midlands in England. Coventry is the 9th largest city in England and the 11th largest in the United Kingdom. It is also the second largest city in the English Midlands, after Birmingham, with a population of 300,848, although...

, Nuneaton A444
A444 road
The A444 is a primary road running between Coventry and Burton on Trent in England, usually referred to as the "A treble four".-Route:Starting on the A4600 Sky Blue Way in Coventry, the road heads north on a dual carriageway road, crossing the M6 at junction 3. It bypasses Bedworth to the west and...

, Bedworth B4113
150.8
150.1
Coventry A46
A46 road
The A46 is an A road in England. It starts east of Bath, Somerset and ends in Cleethorpes, North East Lincolnshire, but it does not form a continuous route. Large portions of the old road have been lost, bypassed, or replaced by motorway development...

 
Leicester
Leicester
Leicester is a city and unitary authority in the East Midlands of England, and the county town of Leicestershire. The city lies on the River Soar and at the edge of the National Forest...

 M69
M69 motorway
The M69 is a lightly used dual three lane dual carriageway motorway in Leicestershire and Warwickshire, England connecting Leicester and Coventry. It opened in 1977.-History:...

 (M1)
J2 Coventry (East)
Coventry
Coventry is a city and metropolitan borough in the county of West Midlands in England. Coventry is the 9th largest city in England and the 11th largest in the United Kingdom. It is also the second largest city in the English Midlands, after Birmingham, with a population of 300,848, although...

 A46, Leicester, Hinckley
Hinckley
Hinckley is a town in southwest Leicestershire, England. It has a population of 43,246 . It is administered by Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council...

 M69 (M1(N)
M1 motorway
The M1 is a north–south motorway in England primarily connecting London to Leeds, where it joins the A1 near Aberford. While the M1 is considered to be the first inter-urban motorway to be completed in the United Kingdom, the first road to be built to motorway standard in the country was the...

)
137.8
137.1
Rugby A426
A426 road
The A426 road is a road in England which runs from the city of Leicester to the market town of Southam in Warwickshire via the towns of Lutterworth and Rugby.-History:...

J1 Rugby, Lutterworth
Lutterworth
Lutterworth is a market town and civil parish in the Harborough district of Leicestershire, England. The town is located in southern Leicestershire, north of Rugby, in Warwickshire and south of Leicester. It had a population of 8,293 in the 2001 UK census....

 A426
137.1 No access M1 J19
52.4043°N 1.1776°W Southern end of the M6
Felixstowe
Felixstowe
Felixstowe is a seaside town on the North Sea coast of Suffolk, England. The town gives its name to the nearby Port of Felixstowe, which is the largest container port in the United Kingdom and is owned by Hutchinson Ports UK...

, Corby
Corby
Corby Town is a town and borough located in the county of Northamptonshire. Corby Town is 23 miles north-east of the county town, Northampton. The borough had a population of 53,174 at the 2001 Census; the town on its own accounted for 49,222 of this figure...

, Kettering
Kettering
Kettering is a market town in the Borough of Kettering, Northamptonshire, England. It is situated about from London. Kettering is mainly situated on the west side of the River Ise, a tributary of the River Nene which meets at Wellingborough...

 A14, M1 (North)
Start of motorway London M1

Legislation

Each motorway in England requires that a legal document called a Statutory Instrument
Statutory Instrument
A Statutory Instrument is the principal form in which delegated or secondary legislation is made in Great Britain.Statutory Instruments are governed by the Statutory Instruments Act 1946. They replaced Statutory Rules and Orders, made under the Rules Publication Act 1893, in 1948.Most delegated...

 to be published, detailing the route of the road, before it can be built. The dates given on these Statutory Instruments relate to when the document was published, and not when the road was built. Provided below is an incomplete list of the Statutory Instruments relating to the route of the M6.
  • Statutory Instrument 1987 No. 252: County Council of West Midlands (M6 Motorway Junction 10) (Connecting Road) Scheme 1985 Confirmation Instrument 1987
  • Statutory Instrument 1987 No. 2254: M6 Motorway (Catthorpe Interchange) Connecting Roads Scheme 1987
  • Statutory Instrument 1990 No. 2659: M6 Motorway: Widening between Junctions 20 and 21A (Thelwall Viaduct
    Thelwall Viaduct
    The Thelwall Viaduct is a steel composite girder viaduct in Thelwall, Warrington, England. It carries the M6 motorway across the Manchester Ship Canal and the River Mersey...

    ) and Connecting Roads Scheme 1990
  • Statutory Instrument 1991 No. 1873: M6 Motorway (Widening and Improvements Between Junctions 30 and 32) and Connecting Roads Scheme 1991
  • Statutory Instrument 1993 No. 1370: Lancashire County Council (Proposed Connecting Roads to M6 Motorway at Haighton) Special Roads Scheme 1992 Confirmation Instrument 1993
  • Statutory Instrument 1997 No. 1292: M6 Birmingham to Carlisle Motorway (At Haighton) Connecting Roads Scheme 1997
  • Statutory Instrument 1997 No. 1293: M6 Birmingham To Carlisle Motorway (at Haighton) Special Roads Scheme 1997 Transfer Order 1997
  • Statutory Instrument 1998 No. 125: The M6 Motorway (Saredon and Packington Diversions) Scheme 1998

See also


External links

The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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