Just home from another long jaunt across the middle of England, from London to Shrewsbury, and back. Catching up with family for the weekend up in Shrewsbury, Welshpool and surrounding areas. I took a slightly different route from last time, running a little further North.
As before I left London and set off for Aylesbury, however this time I then went directly North along the A413 towards Winslow and Buckingham. A good stretch with lots of nice swooping bends and undulations, interspersed with numerous picturesque villages. However, it would seem not all have enjoyed by the section judging from all the signs highlighting the number of motorcycle deaths on this road…
Next, headed straight through Buckingham out on the A422 towards Brackley – well that would have been my plan had I not mistakenly taken the A421 dual carriageway instead. Doh! Nonetheless the A422 continued onto Banbury, Ettington and Stratford-upon-Avon. All of it nice and twisty, with a mix of long swooping bends and some tighter corners. Edgehill has some fun hairpins on a steep incline and again the roads snakes through many postcode pretty villages, for example Wroxton (main featured image above). Shakespearian Stratford-upon-Avon is a busy town to negotiate, but worth it for the sites.
Out of Stratford-upon-Avon I took the A46 to Alcester – a busy straight A road, not much fun at all. Note to self: find an alternative for this section, perhaps through Wixford. From Alcester I picked up the A422 again all the way to near Worcester, where the twisty bends resume and I whizzed past some comedic named places like North Piddle and White Ladies Aston.
At the end of the A422, I took the A4538 North towards Droitwich Spa, blitzed along the A38 bypass and then off towards Kidderminster on the A442. Which although much of which has a 50mph, it’s way more fun than the tedious A449 to Kiddie. Around the Kidderminster ring road, then it’s out towards Bridgenorth on the A442 again and then on the A458 to Shrewsbury. Both of which a great roads to loose your chicken strips.
Overall, it was a good route and a nice alternative to going via Fish Hill, Moreton-on-the-Marsh and Bicester. Definitely more bends and twisty sections. Granted, there’s quite a few 50mph sections with solid white lines which can be pretty boring if stuck behind a slow driver. However, I found it generally quiet enough to find a safe overtaking opportunity after no more than 5 minutes. The only real downside was the slow progress through some of the busy towns, Stratford-upon-Avon especially. All in, by the time I continued around the M25 and into East London, this route took me about 6 hours, with half dozen quick comfort stops.