Sign at junction 29M6 Junction 29

Junction 29 began life as the most southely junction on the British motorway system, however at the time that system was only 9 miles long. In other words this junction marked the southern end of the Preston Bypass .

The junction was built just yard east of what was at the time one Lancashire's most important junction's the A6/A49 junction. The north south traffic from London and Birmingham etc on the A49 met with the Manchester traffic on the A6 before entering Preston. The Preston Bypass being designed to take any of this traffic going north of Preston to Lancaster and Scotland out of Preston. The junction at the time was a terminal roundabout likely built high enough above the M6 to later build a bridge undeneath.

 

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In 1963 the M6 was extended further south from this junction resulting in it becoming what was to become the most common type of junction on the M6 and the safest the roundabout over the motorway as shown below. From this time onward the A49 now replaced by the M6 became redundant as a main trunk road.  

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Notice the 3 lanes going south, but 2 lanes north, this was changed in 1965 with the conversion of the Preston Bypass to 3 lanes as shown below.:-

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The junction stayed the same until the mid 1990's when the M65 from Blackburn was constructed to join the A6 just east of this junction, a new rounabout and severel new roads where constructed to meet this requirements the junction becoming one of the most complex on the M6 as shown below:-

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The junctions complexity can also be seen in the ariel photo below:-

Aeriel photo of junction 29 with thanks to Google Earth