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The M50 is a motorway in Gloucestershiremarker, Worcestershire and Herefordshiremarker, Englandmarker. It is 21 miles (34 km) long and is sometimes referred to as the Ross Spur. It is the only motorway-class road in Herefordshire.


The M50 runs in a south westerly/north easterly direction between the M5 motorway just north of Tewkesburymarker and the A40 road and A449 road at Ross-on-Wyemarker. After leaving the M5 at junction 8 it passes north of Tewkesbury and then south of Ledburymarker. Between Junctions 1 & 2 it crosses the River Severn on the Queenhill Bridge, which also covers the associated flood plain. After passing north of Newentmarker the motorway reaches its terminus at Junction 4.


The M50 was built by Tarmac Construction between 1958 and 1962:
  • Junctions 1 to 4 opened in 1960.
  • M5 to Junction 1 opened in 1962.

The route was part of a strategic route from The Midlandsmarker to South Walesmarker (also including the A449 and A40 [64530]) and so was constructed as an early priority. It is one of the few British motorways not to have been widened, retaining its original layout of only two lanes in each direction.


Data from driver location signs are used to provide distance and carriageway identifier information.
M50 Motorway
km Eastbound exits Junction Westbound exits
0.0 The MIDLANDS, Worcestermarker, Birminghammarker, The SOUTH WEST, Tewkesburymarker, Bristolmarker,M5 M5, J8

Start of Motorway
2.8 Tewkesburymarker A38 J1 Malvernmarker A38
17.5 Gloucestermarker A417 J2 Herefordmarker, Ledburymarker A417
Newentmarker B4421 J3 Newent B4421
34.7 Start of motorway J4

SOUTH WALES, Monmouthmarker, Ledburymarker, Ross-on-Wyemarker A449

Coordinate list


Although not served directly by motorway service areas the M50 is served by a service area at Strensham services operated by RoadChef just north of the M50's north eastern terminus junction with junction 8 of the M5. Also at the other end of the M50 on the A449 road near the junction 4 south western terminus of the M50 there was a service area operated by Welcome Break called Ross Spur services, however recently this has closed and only the southwest bound BP garage remains open [64531]


The junction with the M5 was originally a free-flowing trumpet-style junction , but was converted to a roundabout when the M5 was widened in the 1990s. Junction 1, where the M50 meets with the A38, is a Partial Cloverleaf. Junctions 2 and 3 have 90 degree turns from the deceleration lane into the slip roads which is hazardous for high-speed driving.

2007 Floods

During the inital deluge, the junctions with the A38 and M5 were closed due to flash flooding. In the aftermath, the bridge across the River Severn was the only one still open between the M4/M48 Severn bridges, and Shrewsbury.

See also


  1. The Motorway Archive - M50 dates page
  2. The Motorway Archive - M50 Scheme Page
  3. North Eastern end of the M50
  4. South Western end of the M50
  5. Major Roads of Great Britain Narrative description of the route
  6. The Motorway Archive - M5 Widening

External links

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