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M1 Motorway in Britain

Posted: Tue Dec 31, 2019 9:47 pm
by ArchGuy1
Here is an article that talks about the M1 Motorway in Britain for the 60th anniversary of it's opening in 1959. It truly was an engineering marvel and it is actually the second motorway in Britain after the M6. There were no speed limits when it was first built and the route goes from London to Birmingham. What are your thoughts about the M1 and does anyone remember the days it had no speed limits.
https://www.autocar.co.uk/car-news/indu ... t-motorway

Re: M1 Motorway in Britain

Posted: Tue Dec 31, 2019 9:58 pm
by johns624
It's not that great, it's just that so many roads in the UK suck. All it is is a limited access highway, like our Interstates. Most driving in Scotland is on narrow, two lane roads that would be considered county roads here in the US.

Re: M1 Motorway in Britain

Posted: Tue Dec 31, 2019 10:03 pm
by BlueberryWheats
ArchGuy1 wrote:
Here is an article that talks about the M1 Motorway in Britain for the 60th anniversary of it's opening in 1959. It truly was an engineering marvel and it is actually the second motorway in Britain after the M6. There were no speed limits when it was first built and the route goes from London to Birmingham. What are your thoughts about the M1 and does anyone remember the days it had no speed limits.
https://www.autocar.co.uk/car-news/indu ... t-motorway


I wouldn't say the M1 goes from London to Birmingham, the M40 does though. The M1 can be used as a trunk route to Birmingham, but passes Birmingham to the East on it's way northwards to Leeds.

Not the entire M6 was the first to open, just a few miles stretch in the Preston area (very close to where I currently live), not the major England to Scotland route it is today.

Re: M1 Motorway in Britain

Posted: Wed Jan 01, 2020 4:40 pm
by jetwet1
After driving on it and the M40 a few times over the last year, it would be fine, if not for the ever changing speed limits, why a 45mph speed limit on a motorway at 3am with no road works ???

Re: M1 Motorway in Britain

Posted: Wed Jan 01, 2020 6:13 pm
by BlueberryWheats
Both the M1 and M40 are my two options for driving back to my hometown to see family. Personal preference is definitely the M40, even though long stretches of it are totally pitch black at night it still beats the mess that is the M1.

Added bonus, if I go the M40 way I have to travel anti-clockwise when joining the M25 which means passing right past the end of 9L and 9R of LHR. On slow road traffic days one can see a good bit of action passing very low overhead.

Re: M1 Motorway in Britain

Posted: Thu Jan 02, 2020 8:05 pm
by noviorbis77
The M40 is better. No speed cameras or much of a presence of police.

Re: M1 Motorway in Britain

Posted: Thu Jan 02, 2020 8:22 pm
by BlueberryWheats
noviorbis77 wrote:
The M40 is better. No speed cameras or much of a presence of police.


Well yes, that too. Helps shave time off my long journey.

Re: M1 Motorway in Britain

Posted: Fri Jan 03, 2020 11:32 am
by Airstud
BlueberryWheats wrote:
ArchGuy1 wrote:
Here is an article that talks about the M1 Motorway in Britain for the 60th anniversary of it's opening in 1959. It truly was an engineering marvel and it is actually the second motorway in Britain after the M6. There were no speed limits when it was first built and the route goes from London to Birmingham. What are your thoughts about the M1 and does anyone remember the days it had no speed limits.
https://www.autocar.co.uk/car-news/indu ... t-motorway


I wouldn't say the M1 goes from London to Birmingham, the M40 does though. The M1 can be used as a trunk route to Birmingham, but passes Birmingham to the East on it's way northwards to Leeds.

Not the entire M6 was the first to open, just a few miles stretch in the Preston area (very close to where I currently live), not the major England to Scotland route it is today.


Which, is what I said basically.

Re: M1 Motorway in Britain

Posted: Fri Jan 03, 2020 5:15 pm
by PlymSpotter
One thing I love about the entire UK motorway network, which the M1 / M6 kicked off, is the design standards. I've driven all over the world, but the UK's motorways and trunk routes have the best standards when it comes to on/off slips, grades, corners etc... It makes driving much safer, if not completely idiot proof.

The M1's opening also signalled a new, if short lived, era for UK coaches. On urban and open roads, buses / coaches had been limited to 30mph, but with the unrestricted motorway some operators saw an opportunity. Midland Express ordered a fleet of 10 'supercharged' CM5T coaches, which began operating Birmingham-London express services on the day the M1 opened. Intended to 'cruise' at up to 85mph, they could just about touch 100mph on the downhills, but grew a reputation for blowing tyres at high speeds. Other operators planned regular 100mph services to compete with the rail network, but ultimately the technology couldn't deliver this before the 70mph limit was applied in 1965.

Airstud wrote:
BlueberryWheats wrote:
ArchGuy1 wrote:
Here is an article that talks about the M1 Motorway in Britain for the 60th anniversary of it's opening in 1959. It truly was an engineering marvel and it is actually the second motorway in Britain after the M6. There were no speed limits when it was first built and the route goes from London to Birmingham. What are your thoughts about the M1 and does anyone remember the days it had no speed limits.
https://www.autocar.co.uk/car-news/indu ... t-motorway


I wouldn't say the M1 goes from London to Birmingham, the M40 does though. The M1 can be used as a trunk route to Birmingham, but passes Birmingham to the East on it's way northwards to Leeds.

Not the entire M6 was the first to open, just a few miles stretch in the Preston area (very close to where I currently live), not the major England to Scotland route it is today.


Which, is what I said basically.


Wait a second, are you Airstud or ArchGuy1??

Re: M1 Motorway in Britain

Posted: Sat Jan 04, 2020 5:44 am
by ArchGuy1
PlymSpotter wrote:
One thing I love about the entire UK motorway network, which the M1 / M6 kicked off, is the design standards. I've driven all over the world, but the UK's motorways and trunk routes have the best standards when it comes to on/off slips, grades, corners etc... It makes driving much safer, if not completely idiot proof.

The M1's opening also signalled a new, if short lived, era for UK coaches. On urban and open roads, buses / coaches had been limited to 30mph, but with the unrestricted motorway some operators saw an opportunity. Midland Express ordered a fleet of 10 'supercharged' CM5T coaches, which began operating Birmingham-London express services on the day the M1 opened. Intended to 'cruise' at up to 85mph, they could just about touch 100mph on the downhills, but grew a reputation for blowing tyres at high speeds. Other operators planned regular 100mph services to compete with the rail network, but ultimately the technology couldn't deliver this before the 70mph limit was applied in 1965.

Airstud wrote:
BlueberryWheats wrote:

I wouldn't say the M1 goes from London to Birmingham, the M40 does though. The M1 can be used as a trunk route to Birmingham, but passes Birmingham to the East on it's way northwards to Leeds.

Not the entire M6 was the first to open, just a few miles stretch in the Preston area (very close to where I currently live), not the major England to Scotland route it is today.


Which, is what I said basically.


Wait a second, are you Airstud or ArchGuy1??

Did personal cars break down more often than coaches at high speed on the M1 when it first opened in 1959.

Re: M1 Motorway in Britain

Posted: Sat Jan 04, 2020 6:58 pm
by BlueberryWheats
ArchGuy1 wrote:
Did personal cars break down more often than coaches at high speed on the M1 when it first opened in 1959.


No idea. I wasn't around until waaaay after 1959. I'm sure those statistics could be Googled, if you are inclined to do so.

Re: M1 Motorway in Britain

Posted: Fri Jan 10, 2020 12:46 am
by ArchGuy1
PlymSpotter wrote:
One thing I love about the entire UK motorway network, which the M1 / M6 kicked off, is the design standards. I've driven all over the world, but the UK's motorways and trunk routes have the best standards when it comes to on/off slips, grades, corners etc... It makes driving much safer, if not completely idiot proof.

The M1's opening also signalled a new, if short lived, era for UK coaches. On urban and open roads, buses / coaches had been limited to 30mph, but with the unrestricted motorway some operators saw an opportunity. Midland Express ordered a fleet of 10 'supercharged' CM5T coaches, which began operating Birmingham-London express services on the day the M1 opened. Intended to 'cruise' at up to 85mph, they could just about touch 100mph on the downhills, but grew a reputation for blowing tyres at high speeds. Other operators planned regular 100mph services to compete with the rail network, but ultimately the technology couldn't deliver this before the 70mph limit was applied in 1965.

Airstud wrote:
BlueberryWheats wrote:

I wouldn't say the M1 goes from London to Birmingham, the M40 does though. The M1 can be used as a trunk route to Birmingham, but passes Birmingham to the East on it's way northwards to Leeds.

Not the entire M6 was the first to open, just a few miles stretch in the Preston area (very close to where I currently live), not the major England to Scotland route it is today.


Which, is what I said basically.


Wait a second, are you Airstud or ArchGuy1??

What is the German Autobahn like compared to the UK Motorway network.

Re: M1 Motorway in Britain

Posted: Fri Jan 10, 2020 6:49 am
by BlueberryWheats
ArchGuy1 wrote:
PlymSpotter wrote:
One thing I love about the entire UK motorway network, which the M1 / M6 kicked off, is the design standards. I've driven all over the world, but the UK's motorways and trunk routes have the best standards when it comes to on/off slips, grades, corners etc... It makes driving much safer, if not completely idiot proof.

The M1's opening also signalled a new, if short lived, era for UK coaches. On urban and open roads, buses / coaches had been limited to 30mph, but with the unrestricted motorway some operators saw an opportunity. Midland Express ordered a fleet of 10 'supercharged' CM5T coaches, which began operating Birmingham-London express services on the day the M1 opened. Intended to 'cruise' at up to 85mph, they could just about touch 100mph on the downhills, but grew a reputation for blowing tyres at high speeds. Other operators planned regular 100mph services to compete with the rail network, but ultimately the technology couldn't deliver this before the 70mph limit was applied in 1965.

Airstud wrote:

Which, is what I said basically.


Wait a second, are you Airstud or ArchGuy1??

What is the German Autobahn like compared to the UK Motorway network.


No idea, never used the autobahn. These are things that can be googled.

Re: M1 Motorway in Britain

Posted: Fri Jan 10, 2020 2:37 pm
by PlymSpotter
The autobahns are also excellent to drive. But in my experience intersection design isn't as good - the radius of turns can be much, much tighter (and sudden), whilst on / off slips are usually far shorter.

Of course many of the Autobahns are unlimited, which I think is excellent in itself. Lane discipline also seems to be far better in Germany - in the UK I'd say 25% of drivers don't have a basic understanding of how to use a motorway, or just don't care.

Re: M1 Motorway in Britain

Posted: Fri Jan 10, 2020 2:58 pm
by Reinhardt
PlymSpotter wrote:
The autobahns are also excellent to drive. But in my experience intersection design isn't as good - the radius of turns can be much, much tighter (and sudden), whilst on / off slips are usually far shorter.

Of course many of the Autobahns are unlimited, which I think is excellent in itself. Lane discipline also seems to be far better in Germany - in the UK I'd say 25% of drivers don't have a basic understanding of how to use a motorway, or just don't care.


I live in Germany but I'm British so have a lot of experience of both.

Some Autobahn intersections are indeed too sharp and also you get sections were traffic joins after you leave, and you have to cross over them to get to where you want to go. It just creates confusion and traffic. BUT, not having roundabouts or traffic lights 200m after you leave the autobahn makes a massive difference. You can continue on at 80km/h from one autobahn to the next. It makes the flow much better.

Autobahns are great when there's not much traffic, but there are a lot of lorries during the day. The closing speed of traffic doing over 180 km/h compared to lorries is at times just downright dangerous. I've had people sit 1m from my bumper when I'm doing 200km/h with traffic ahead - there's nowhere to go and they are desperate to get past. I've found a lot of Germans have no patience at all when driving. And seen my fair share of wrecks because of it.

A lot of Autobahns have appaling drainage so when it rains just a bit you can barely see where you're going. Catseye's are a godsend in the UK, and they should be adopted everywhere.

UK motorways - the amount of middle lane sitting is obsurd. Lots are people in tiny cars or taxis. They create tailbacks all over the place. Apparently the Police were told to give on the spot fines to people who do it, but I don't think there are enough Police around. A lot of the M25, the surface is concrete and awful. It's horffiically loud with holes and debris everywhere. Signage on UK motorways is excellent. Service stations are awful with the exception of some of the brand new ones on the M40 - massively busy, nowhere near enough space to park, horrifically expensive. The newer ones in Germany are superb.

You're spot on about UK drivers. But then they don't have to drive on a motorway to pass a test. That has to change. The German driving test is hilariously more comprehensive in comparison.

Re: M1 Motorway in Britain

Posted: Fri Jan 10, 2020 4:58 pm
by noviorbis77
The best motorways are in France

Re: M1 Motorway in Britain

Posted: Fri Jan 10, 2020 5:13 pm
by offloaded
noviorbis77 wrote:
The M40 is better. No speed cameras or much of a presence of police.


I agree. I was on it a couple of weeks ago and after dawdling along at 50mph on the M25 smart motorway at 1.30am due to invisible road workers for miles on end, it was a relief to finally hit the M40. At that time in the morning with little traffic, it still amazed me the amount of drivers pottering along in lane 2 while lane 1 was empty.

Re: M1 Motorway in Britain

Posted: Fri Jan 10, 2020 5:15 pm
by offloaded
noviorbis77 wrote:
The best motorways are in France


They get expensive after a while though!

The Algarve/Lisbon highway (A2) is excellent. No traffic at all, and as it's a toll road, Plod tend to stay off it.

Re: M1 Motorway in Britain

Posted: Fri Jan 10, 2020 5:36 pm
by ArchGuy1
PlymSpotter wrote:
One thing I love about the entire UK motorway network, which the M1 / M6 kicked off, is the design standards. I've driven all over the world, but the UK's motorways and trunk routes have the best standards when it comes to on/off slips, grades, corners etc... It makes driving much safer, if not completely idiot proof.

The M1's opening also signalled a new, if short lived, era for UK coaches. On urban and open roads, buses / coaches had been limited to 30mph, but with the unrestricted motorway some operators saw an opportunity. Midland Express ordered a fleet of 10 'supercharged' CM5T coaches, which began operating Birmingham-London express services on the day the M1 opened. Intended to 'cruise' at up to 85mph, they could just about touch 100mph on the downhills, but grew a reputation for blowing tyres at high speeds. Other operators planned regular 100mph services to compete with the rail network, but ultimately the technology couldn't deliver this before the 70mph limit was applied in 1965.

Airstud wrote:
BlueberryWheats wrote:

I wouldn't say the M1 goes from London to Birmingham, the M40 does though. The M1 can be used as a trunk route to Birmingham, but passes Birmingham to the East on it's way northwards to Leeds.

Not the entire M6 was the first to open, just a few miles stretch in the Preston area (very close to where I currently live), not the major England to Scotland route it is today.


Which, is what I said basically.


Wait a second, are you Airstud or ArchGuy1??

What was the M1 like when it first opened in 1959 compared to now.