Roads to avoid this August Bank Holiday as drivers plan for major disruption

Drivers are being warned to expect severe delays as more than 14 million cars take to UK roads this August Bank Holiday weekend.

Some journeys will take almost four times longer than normal as holidaymakers embark on getaways to make the most of their last 2018 summer hurrah.

The RAC said research suggests 11.2 million people have planned a car journey for a day trip or extended break between Thursday and Bank Holiday Monday, while a further 3.2 million intend to drive during the period but are undecided on which day.

Highways England is lifting or completing more than 300 miles of roadworks from motorways and major A roads from Friday morning.

But around 40 sets will remain.

See below for list of roadworks, traffic jam hotspots and train disruptions

Where will be busiest on the roads?

The busiest times on the road for getaway trips are expected to be on Friday and Saturday, with 3.6 million cars on both days.

Traffic information supplier Inrix predicted the most delayed route will be the M5 from Junction 4 to Junction 1 in the West Midlands between 1pm and 6pm on Friday, when journeys with a typical travel time of 21 minutes could take an extra hour.

On Saturday the M1 is predicted to be badly affected from Junction 22 to Junction 25 in the East Midlands, with journey times increasing from a typical 16 minutes to 62 minutes.

Any other traffic jam hotspots?

– The M20 from Junction 9 to Junction 3 in the South East between 7.30am and 9.30am on Friday

– The M6 from Junction 28 to Junction 32 in the North West between 12pm and 3pm on Friday

– The M5 from Junction 22 to Junction 20 in the South West between 2pm and 4.30pm on Saturday

RAC traffic spokesman Rod Dennis said the Bank Holiday has "huge potential to bring gridlock to major roads".

Where are the roadworks?

M23 junctions eight to 10 (Crawley) 20 miles

M6 junctions 16 to 19 (Crewe) 20 miles

M20 junctions three to five (Wrotham/Aylesford) 15 miles

M6 junctions two to four (Coventry) 14 miles

A14 junctions 31 to 28 (Cambridge) 11 miles

M1 junctions 13 to 14 (Milton Keynes) 10.6 miles

M1 junctions 23a to 25 (Nottingham) 8 miles

M6 junctions 14 to 15 (Stafford) 7.5 miles

M6 junction eight to M5 junction 3 (Oldbury) 7 miles

M62 junctions 10 to 12 (Warrington) 6.5 miles

A1M junction 15 to A1 Buckden (Huntingdon) 6 miles

A14 junctions 32 to 34 (Cambridge) 5 miles

When are the worst times to travel?

Friday 24 August 14:00 to 19:30

Saturday 25 August 11:00 to 15:00

Sunday 26 August 16:30 to 19:00

Monday 27 August 10:00 to 15:30

Will my train run?

Transport chaos will be further exasperated by 400 rail engineering works and three major strikes.

This means:

– No trains to or from London Euston from Saturday to Monday or the following weekend, 1-2 September

– No trains at Bolton from Saturday until Friday 31 August and replacement buses running between Manchester, Preston, Wigan and Blackburn

– Replacement buses between Coventry, Leamington Spa and Birmingham International, affecting Birmingham Airport passengers, from Saturday until 12:00 on Monday

– Replacement buses between Crewe and Liverpool South Parkway from Saturday to Monday

Virgin Trains told the 100,000 daily passengers who use the London-Glasgow line not to try to travel to London.

Rail strikes hit parts of London Underground from August 22-25 and Northern Rail on August 25.

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Any more train trouble?

Rail fare hikes costing passengers up to £376-a-year were confirmed last week.

Season ticket price increases matching July’s 3.2 per cent Retail Price Index will add £376 to a £11,736 Bristol to London season ticket from January.

Travel experts reported a “perfect storm” of problems and said this summer is the “worst ever” for travel chaos as engineering works follow train, road and airline delays and strikes, while fare hikes of up to £376 were approved for rail season tickets last week.

“There’s a potent cocktail of problems across travel networks,” said travel expert Ian Baldry, who has run IBPTS travel consultants since 2001 and previously worked for rail, bus and airline operators for 25 years.

“It’s a perfect storm of travel problems combining for the Bank Holiday weekend.

“This is the worst-ever summer for UK travel problems.

“Rail engineering works are taking place over three weekends. Add in strikes, timetable change chaos and hot weather delays. Fare rises are the cherry on the cake. Passengers are fuming.

“Rail works are forcing more people onto roads, worsening road congestion, while roadworks affect holidaymakers and commuters.”

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