Malton Bypass

After half a century of crises and calculations the Malton By-Pass is now complete. Construction progressed rapidly and the by-pass was ready six months early - in time for the Easter holiday traffic of 1979. This trunk road scheme, for which the Secretary of State for Transport is the Highway Authority, has been designed and supervised by North Yorkshire County Council as the Agent Authority in co-operation with the Regional Controller (Roads and Transportation) Leeds. It was probably the biggest single road building scheme, even allowing for inflation, ever designed by the North Yorkshire County Council or the former North Riding authority.

The total scheme cost will exceed 7m. - compared with an approved estimate of 220,000 for a scheme suspended in September 1939 at the outbreak of War.

The start of the work in June 1977 was the culmination of almost 50 years of talks, negotiations, planning, set-backs and re-planning.

Below is a selection of photos of the bypass being built. Click the photos to see large images of around 250k.The photos were taken by myself , David Wakeley, and the plane was flown by a good friend and local farmer, CARL WILKINSON.


The New River Bridge Pickering Road Roundabout
The above three photos are the Musley Bank junction over 4 Months
Most of the bypass from the York end The Old Malton roundabout and works HQ

The need for the By-Pass was long recognised by the former North Riding County Council. Indeed during the 1920s possible routes were discussed and in 1926 one was designed and estimated to cost 97,000.

In the 1930s the County Council completely reconstructed the length of the A64 in the North Riding except for the Malton area, and further discussions culminated in a public inquiry and approval for a by-pass costing approximately 220,000. The Ministry of Transport confirmed a compulsory purchase order in 1939 and small areas of land were acquired but the scheme was shelved when the war began.

Between 1948 and 1960 various rep-resentations were made to the Minister of Transport, but economic conditions did not permit a start. In the 1960s by-pass line orders were made and engineering drawings were submitted, but it was not until 1967 that the scheme was placed in the newly formed "trunk road preparation pool" In 1971, after further design work, the Malton By-Pass was included in the Ministry of Transport firm programme at an estimated cost of 2,400,000. Work proceeded on minor amendments to the design of the by-pass and side roads, a compulsory purchase order was made for the land required and supplementary orders were made in respect of the revised side road diversions. Boreholes were sunk and a seismic survey carried out to assess ground conditions and enable bridge foundation and road pavement designs to be undertaken.

Detailed geometric designs were undertaken with the aid of the computer and junction and interchange layouts prepared. Bridges were designed, again utilising computers and detail drawings prepared.

Finally quantities were taken off and the massive task of assembling the contract documents for eight firms of contractors to prepare their tenders was completed in early 1976. Each set of documents comprised ten printed volumes and two large folders of drawings, weighing in all nearly half a hundredweight !

Now came another bitter blow when cut backs in public expenditure forced the withdrawal of the invitation to tender. However tenders were again invited early in 1977 and in June of that year a contract was awarded to Dowsett Engineering Construction Ltd. in the sum of 5,513,520.04.


No fees were charged by the pilot of the plane and non of these photos have been sold.

A64 Take a trip down the road

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