The slowest motorways in England
Motorways play a vital role in keeping our towns and cities connected and keeping the country on the move, but they can also be infuriating, especially if you’re unfortunate enough to get stuck in traffic.
But which are the slowest sections of motorway in the country? In some places you’ll be lucky if you even manage to get up to 30 mph, that’s 40 mph under the speed limit! We’ve looked at the average speeds on England’s motorway network to find out.
Beware, these speeds refer to traffic at all times of day, so if you’re travelling during rush hour it’ll be even slower!
The Slowest Motorway Sections
11 of the slowest sections of motorway were found on the M25, also known as the London Orbital Motorway. But drivers often refer to it as ‘Britain’s Largest Car Park or ‘The Road to Hell…’).
The two slowest stretches in the whole country were found on the northbound approach to the Dartford Crossing, which is notorious for congestion, where lots of local traffic, as well as cars from as far away as Continental Europe, all queue to get through two tunnels and crawl to an average speed of around 25 miles per hour.
The M67 is a relatively short motorway, in Greater Manchester, stretching from Denton to Mottram, but is home to some of the worst traffic, particularly at its west end, where traffic moved at a snail’s pace of just 26 miles per hour.
Eight of the slowest stretches of motorway were located on the M5, which links the Midlands with the South West, with motorists enduring particularly slow speeds between junctions 1 and 3, between West Bromwich and Quinton, with average speeds dropping as low as 28.3 miles per hour.
The areas with the slowest motorways
So, we know the individual stretches of motorway which are the slowest in the country, but which areas of England have the lowest average speed across their whole motorway network?
That dubious honour goes to Hounslow, Greater London, where part of the M4 motorway as it comes into London, results in an average speed of just 39.3 miles per hour.
This was followed by Sandwell, West Midlands, which the M5 runs through with 40.4 miles per hour and nearby Coventry at 48 miles per hour.
All data sourced from the Department for Transport’s Road Congestion Statistics (Table CGN0401b), which shows the average speeds of cars on England’s Strategic Road Network across the full 24 hours of the day.