A354 road

The A354 is a primary route in England which runs from Salisbury in Wiltshire to Easton on the Isle of Portland in Dorset, a total distance of 51 miles (82 km). From Salisbury the road crosses Cranborne Chase and briefly merges with the A350 at the Blandford Forum bypass before crossing the Dorset Downs and merging with the A35 at the Puddletown bypass. 7 miles (11 km) to the west it splits from the Dorchester bypass and runs south. The road now bypasses Upwey and Broadwey on a new section of road which has some 2 lane sections going north and 1 lane continuously going south towards Weymouth. After the old and new sections meet at Manor Roundabout the road follows down Weymouth Way alongside Radipole Lake. The final stretch runs across a short bridge over Chesil beach onto Portland.

UK road A354

Route information
Length51 mi (82 km)
Major junctions
North endSalisbury
51°03′26″N 1°47′41″W / 51.0571°N 1.7946°W
 A338 A338 road
A350 A350 road
A35 A35 road
A352 A352 road
A353 A353 road
South endPortland
50°33′46″N 2°26′57″W / 50.5629°N 2.4493°W
Salisbury, Blandford Forum, Dorchester, Weymouth
Road network

Weymouth Relief Road

The project was to build a 3.75-mile (6.04 km) single carriageway road, with crawler lane along part, linking the A354 Manor Roundabout near Radipole to the A354 at the top of the Ridgeway Hill. The main carriageway of the Weymouth Relief Road opened on Thursday 17 March 2011.

The 2012 Olympics at Portland played a major factor in making £89m funding for the road available.

The History of Improving the A354 Dorchester Road

1983 - The Dorset Structure Plan proposed to construct the A354 Weymouth, Ridgeway to Mount Pleasant improvement as a primary route.

December 1987 to April 1988 - a public inquiry was held into proposals for development in the Lorton area which included a new single-carriageway route running from Mount Pleasant to Littlemoor. These proposals were refused consent by the Secretary of State.

Between 1989 and 1992 - various studies and consultation exercises undertaken into alternative route options and alignments for a dual carriageway road between the Ridgeway and north Weymouth.

1992 - work on a planning application and Environmental Statement for this scheme began.

July 1994 - a dual carriageway road along the alignment was granted planning permission.

1996 - A public inquiry into the Compulsory Purchase and Side Road Orders was held. The Secretary of State approved these orders. However, work on the scheme was never started as, following a Government review of road construction, the funding for the scheme was not forthcoming. The planning permission lapsed after 5 years.

Following the lapse of permission Dorset County Council undertook a review of the previously consented scheme. The previous dual carriageway route was rejected in light of changing policy guidance, developments within the area of the proposed route and new information about the ecological value of areas along the route.

A new preferred route for a single carriageway road was identified, running from Manor Roundabout alongside the eastern side of the Weymouth/Dorchester railway to Littlemoor, through Littlemoor and then parallel with the alignment of the railway to the Ridgeway (often referred to as the Orange Route).

December 2003 - the Government Office of the South West confirmed that this scheme was 'Provisionally Accepted', subject to completion of all relevant statutory processes and final approval of Ministers.

September 2005 - a planning application and Environmental Statement for a road along the preferred route was submitted by Dorset County Council. However, the application was not determined as, following its submission and at the request of the planning authority, the council carried out further studies, including an examination of the potential for further reducing the effects on the environment, especially those parts which are nationally designated.

As a result of the council's re-assessment, changes were made to the September 2005 proposals, primarily to the stretch of road through the AONB.

March 2011 - Relief Road was opened

External links

Coordinates: 50°50′50″N 2°09′59″W / 50.8472°N 2.1663°W

A338 road

The A338 is a major primary route in southern England, that runs from the junction with the A35 at Poole in Dorset to the junction with the A420 at Besselsleigh in Oxfordshire, a distance of 84 miles (135 km).

A350 road

The A350 is a north-south primary route in southern England, that runs from the M4 motorway in Wiltshire to Poole in Dorset.

A35 road

The A35 is a road in southern England, connecting Honiton in Devon and Southampton in Hampshire. It is a trunk road for some of its length. Most of its route passes through Dorset and the New Forest. It originally connected Exeter and Southampton, the original A35 ran along what is now the A3052 joining the present road at Charmouth.

A roads in Zone 3 of the Great Britain numbering scheme

List of A roads in zone 3 in Great Britain starting west of the A3 and south of the A4 (roads beginning with 3).

Coombe Bissett

Coombe Bissett is a village and civil parish in the English county of Wiltshire, 3 miles (4.8 km) southwest of Salisbury on the A354 road towards Blandford Forum. The parish includes the village of Homington; both villages are in the River Ebble valley.

Dorset Cursus

The Dorset Cursus is a Neolithic cursus monument that spans across 10 km (6¼ miles) of the chalk downland of Cranborne Chase in east Dorset, United Kingdom. Its extreme length makes it a notable example of this class of linear earthwork; it is better interpreted as a pair of same-length cursus constructed end to end, with the more southerly cursus (the Gussage Cursus) pre-dating the northerly one (the Pentridge Cursus).

Isle of Portland

The Isle of Portland is a limestone tied island, 4 miles (6 km) long by 1.7 miles (2.7 km) wide, in the English Channel. Portland is 5 miles (8 km) south of the resort of Weymouth, forming the southernmost point of the county of Dorset, England. A barrier beach called Chesil Beach joins it to the mainland. The A354 road passes down the Portland end of the beach and then over the Fleet Lagoon by bridge to the mainland. Portland and Weymouth together form the borough of Weymouth and Portland. The population of Portland is 12,400.

Portland is a central part of the Jurassic Coast, a World Heritage Site on the Dorset and east Devon coast, important for its geology and landforms. Portland stone, famous for its use in British and world architecture, including St Paul's Cathedral and the United Nations Headquarters, continues to be quarried.

Portland Harbour, in between Portland and Weymouth, is one of the largest man-made harbours in the world. The harbour was made by the building of stone breakwaters between 1848 and 1905. From its inception it was a Royal Navy base, and played prominent roles during the First and Second World Wars; ships of the Royal Navy and NATO countries worked up and exercised in its waters until 1995. The harbour is now a civilian port and popular recreation area, and was used for the 2012 Olympic Games.

The name Portland is used for one of the British Sea Areas, and has been exported as the name of North American and Australian towns.

Milborne St Andrew

Milborne St Andrew is a village and civil parish in the county of Dorset in southern England. It is sited in a winterbourne valley on the dip slope of the Dorset Downs, on the A354 road 9 miles (14 km) northeast of the county town Dorchester. It lies in the North Dorset administrative district. In the 2011 census the parish had 472 dwellings, 453 households and a population of 1,062.


Pentridge is a village and former civil parish, now in the parish of Sixpenny Handley and Pentridge, in the English county of Dorset, lying in the north-east of the county within the East Dorset administrative district. It is situated on the edge of Cranborne Chase down a dead-end minor lane just south of the A354 road between the towns of Blandford Forum (ten miles to the south-west) and Salisbury (twelve miles to the northeast). In 2001 it had a population of 215. The civil parish was abolished on 1 April 2015 and merged with Sixpenny Handley to form Sixpenny Handley and Pentridge.The village name derives from the Celtic pen ("hill") and twrch ("boar"), and thus means "hill of the wild boar"; its existence was first recorded (as "Pentric") in the eighth century, eighty years before the birth of Alfred the Great.The village is located amongst many Neolithic, Roman and Saxon earthworks, notably Bokerley Dyke, a long defensive ditch which was dug by the Romano-British to keep out the Saxon invaders.

Nearby is Pentridge Hill, formed by a band of more resistant chalk than the surrounding land.

Ridgeway Hill Viking burial pit

The Ridgeway Hill Viking burial pit at Ridgeway Hill near Weymouth, Dorset, was a mass grave of 54 skeletons and 51 heads of Scandinavian men executed some time between AD 970 and 1025. The men are believed to have been Vikings executed by local Anglo-Saxons. The dismembered skeletons were discovered by archaeologists in June 2009, and their identity and approximate ages were later confirmed by forensic analyses. Although the immediate circumstances of the deaths is unknown, the event occurred at a time of conflict between the native Anglo-Saxons and Viking invaders, and it has been suggested that the Vikings had been captured during an attempted raid into Anglo-Saxon territory.

Weymouth, Dorset

Weymouth is a seaside town in Dorset, England, situated on a sheltered bay at the mouth of the River Wey on the English Channel coast. The town is 11 kilometres (7 mi) south of Dorchester and 8 kilometres (5 mi) north of the Isle of Portland. The town's population is 52,323 (2011). Weymouth has a metropolitan population of 71,083 (2016). The town is the third largest settlement in Dorset after the unitary authorities of Bournemouth and Poole.Weymouth is a tourist resort, and its economy depends on its harbour and visitor attractions; the town is a gateway situated halfway along the Jurassic Coast, a World Heritage Site on the Dorset and east Devon coast, important for its geology and landforms. Weymouth Harbour has included cross-channel ferries, and is home to pleasure boats and private yachts, and nearby Portland Harbour is home to the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy, where the sailing events of the 2012 Olympic Games and Paralympic Games were held.

The A354 road bridge connects Weymouth to Portland, which together form the borough of Weymouth and Portland. The history of the borough stretches back to the 12th century; including involvement in the spread of the Black Death, the settlement of the Americas, the development of Georgian architecture, and a major departure point for the Normandy Landings.

Winterborne Monkton

Winterborne Monkton is a small village and civil parish in the county of Dorset in southern England. It lies in the West Dorset administrative district, close to the A354 road between the county town Dorchester, 1.5 miles (2.4 km) to the north, and the coastal resort Weymouth, 5 miles (8.0 km) to the south. Dorset County Council's 2013 mid-year estimate of the parish population is 50.Winterborne Monkton village consists of a few houses and a church. The hill fort of Maiden Castle stands to the northwest.

Winterborne Whitechurch

Winterborne Whitechurch, also Winterborne Whitchurch, is a village and civil parish in central Dorset, England, situated in a winterbourne valley on the A354 road on the Dorset Downs 5 miles (8.0 km) south-west of Blandford Forum. In the 2011 census the civil parish had 354 dwellings, 331 households and a population of 757.

A roads in Zone 3 of the Great Britain road numbering scheme

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