M42 motorway

From Academic Kids

For alternate uses, see M42 (disambiguation).

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 (NEC) and Tamworth on the way.

After Tamworth the road is downgraded to dual-carriageway status as the A42. The junctions on this section, 12-14, are numbered as a continuation of the motorway.

The section of the M42 between junctions 7A and 9 was re-built as part of the M6 Toll works and now forms the link between the M6 and the southern end of the toll road.

Along with sections of the M5 and M6, the southern sections of the M42 form an orbital motorway around Birmingham. Much like the M25 around London, there are areas where this orbital system does not work well. One such point is junction 3A, the link between the M42 and the M40, where traffic is often heavy in the rush hour. Junction 6 for Birmingham International Airport and the National Exhibition Centre (NEC) can also be problem area when major events such as Crufts are taking place at the NEC.

When the M42 was going through the planning stages in 1977 there was great opposition to the development by the residents of Bromsgrove. Ironically, much of the town's population now depends on this motorway (and the M5) for their commuting needs. Obviously many of the people attracted to the town from the 1980s onwards have come because of the motorway links.

The Highways Agency is currently implementing an Active Traffic Management (ATM) system between junction 3a and 7 of the M42. This is a new pilot motorway scheme which combines a number of new technologies with some tried and tested motorway traffic management techniques. The scheme will include mandatory variable speed limits, as on the M25, enhanced driver information signs and a new congestion and incident management system. This system will allow operators to open and close any lane to traffic in order to help manage congestion or an incident. This will eventually include using the hard shoulder as a running lane betweeen junctions under controlled conditions.


  • Junction 4A(M5) - To/From the M5 for The South West & North East
  • Junction 1 - A38 for Bromsgrove
  • Junction 2 - A441 for Birmingham (South) and Hopwood Park Services
  • Junction 3 - A435 for Birmingham (South), Redditch & Evesham
  • Junction 3a - M40 for London, Warwick and Stratford-on-Avon
  • Junction 4 - A3400 & A34 for Shirley & Henley-in-Arden
  • Junction 5 - A41 for Solihull
  • Junction 6 - A45 for Birmingham (South East), The National Exhibition Centre (NEC), Birmingham International Airport & Coventry (South & West)
  • Junction 7 - M6 for The North West & Birmingham (East, North & Central)
  • Junction 7a - M6 for London, Coventry & M1
  • Junction 7b - *SOUTHBOUND ONLY* M6 Toll for London, Coventry & M6
  • Junction 8 - *SOUTHBOUND ONLY* M6 for Birmingham (East, North, West & Central)
  • Junction 8a - *NORTHBOUND ONLY* M6 Toll for Lichfield & The North West
  • Junction 9 - A446 for Coventry (North & East), Lichfield, Brownhills & A4097 for Sutton Coldfield
  • Junction 10 - A5 for Tamworth, Tamworth Services & Nuneaton
  • Junction 11 - A444 for Burton-upon-Trent
  • Continues as A42 to/from The North, Nottingham East Midlands Airport & M1

See also


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