Hard Shoulders of the British Isles

Discussion in 'transport' started by danny la rouge, May 30, 2018.

  1. danny la rouge

    danny la rouge Without music, life would be a mistake.

    (NB: I may still write this book, and so reserve the right to reuse any of my posts for huge personal gain if there's a bidding war between publishers).

    As a serial owner of second hand cars, I have become acquainted with hard shoulders right across this land in my 30 plus years behind the wheel. I have sat on these asphalt oases in all weathers, on busy roads, on quiet roads, at night, during the day, in the heat of summer, in the bitter face of a winter storm.

    In the days before mobiles, and even afterwards if coverage was poor, you'd have to walk to the next emergency phone, sometimes inches from vans with protruding cargo.

    I don't know if the ONS has records of how many miles there are of hard shoulder, but let's hear it for this innovation. Let's hear your stories, old and new, and see your pictures, old and new. Let's hear local and national news stories. Let's debate the rise of the "smart motorway": good or bad?

    I give you: Hard Shoulders of Britain!
    pogofish, MrSki, A380 and 8 others like this.
  2. danny la rouge

    danny la rouge Without music, life would be a mistake.

    Here's one of my favourite stretches.

    marty21 and kebabking like this.
  3. JimW

    JimW 支那暗杀团

    Very dim and distant memory but think i was arrested there for being a pedestrian on the motorway after the bloke giving us a lift dropped us off at a junction with no on ramp and we tried to walk to the services a mile further on, high up by the fence but clearly not high enough. Got let off with a bollocking though we were young teens.
  4. danny la rouge

    danny la rouge Without music, life would be a mistake.

    Ooh, not a wise move, Youngster Jim! Could have ended badly.
  5. JimW

    JimW 支那暗杀团

    So the officer was keen to point out, though in our defence we really were thirty feet up the embankment. Might have the wrong services, is there an off-only junction by Tebay? Definitely that neck of the woods, we were off to Edinburgh. Copper also told us West Lothian police wouldn't let our feet touch the ground.
    danny la rouge likes this.
  6. Teaboy

    Teaboy It definitely looks brighter over there..

    As a connoisseur how do you feel about Smart Motorways using the hard shoulder as an extra lane when required? Active Traffic Management I believe its called.
  7. danny la rouge

    danny la rouge Without music, life would be a mistake.

    Junction 35?
    JimW likes this.
  8. danny la rouge

    danny la rouge Without music, life would be a mistake.

    I'm not keen, because I worry about breakdowns in periods the shoulder is being used as a lane. But I'm willing to wait until I see it in action.
  9. spanglechick

    spanglechick High Empress of Dressing Up

    I used to have a mini that ran hot and then conked out. When it did this it mostly just needed to sit and chill out for a bit.

    I once took this as an opportunity for a bit of a nap, as it was very early in the morning. Unfortunately a well-intentioned motorist called 999 in case I was dead, so I was rudely awakened by the plod enquiring after my health. Blackwall tunnel approach, south side. Around autumn/winter 2000.
    ddraig, marty21, JimW and 6 others like this.
  10. Mrs D

    Mrs D . Banned

    In 15 years of driving I have never once stopped on a hard shoulder.

    The only time I have experienced it was aged 8 when my gran stopped on one briefly so my dad could close the passenger door which wasn’t shut properly. At the time my gran commented that was the first time she had used a hard shoulder in 40 years of driving.

    I don’t really feel like I’m missing out on anything, although I do have a torch, cheap plastic rain cloaks etc in the boot just in case a few hours in the dark and wet by the side of the M6 becomes our fate.
    marty21 and danny la rouge like this.
  11. teuchter

    teuchter je suis teuchter

    I'm the son of a serial owner of secondhand cars. Therefore before becoming an adult and doing my best to eliminate the motor car from my life, I was frequently involved in breakdown situations.

    I particularly remember waiting around here at Slochd summit, shortly before christmas some year, in the dark and in a blizzard, the car's radiator having exploded or suchlike.

    I see there's no actual hard shoulder as such though. Am I banned from the thread or is a liberal attitude to the definition of "hard shoulder" going to be taken?

    Screen Shot 2018-05-30 at 17.01.56.jpg
  12. danny la rouge

    danny la rouge Without music, life would be a mistake.

    I think we can extend this to "breakdown reservations etc". The A9 over Slochd has has stretches of the old road that people use to pull off the road. I think that can fall within the remit here.
    existentialist and kebabking like this.
  13. FridgeMagnet

    FridgeMagnet Administrator

    danny la rouge likes this.
  14. twentythreedom

    twentythreedom Patterdale Terrorist

    Hard shoulders around the country's motorways are being turned into lanes as part of the 'Smart Motorways' bollocks :(

    Save the hard shoulders! :mad:
  15. danny la rouge

    danny la rouge Without music, life would be a mistake.

    This picture may feature the highest section of motorway hard shoulder in these islands. It's M62 around Junction 22.


    Does anyone know of higher motorway hard shoulder? (The A9 Slochd safety reservations are certainly higher, but are on a mix of dual and single carriageway).
    Casual Observer and kebabking like this.
  16. danny la rouge

    danny la rouge Without music, life would be a mistake.

    I have that book. And I'm definitely seeing my publication as picture heavy.
    marty21 likes this.
  17. S☼I

    S☼I fatter but also funnier than Vic Reeves

    Significant late entry for thread titles as songs thread, good effort
  18. marty21

    marty21 One on one? You're crazy.

    I broke down on the M62 , probably in 2000 or so . I was driving on my own in a 16 year old Ford Fiesta :facepalm: I broke down near Swinton, it was the 1st of 2 occasions being in Swinton. I rang the AA on my Nokia mobile , as I was waiting for them , I stood behind the safety barrier , it was a sunny day , I was on my way to Clitheroe for a wedding , so I was wandering how the fuck I would get to Clitheroe (it's the only time I have felt anxious about Clitheroe) . As I was standing there a car of lads drove by and yelled WANKER at me , #fairpoint.

    AA turned up , engine was fucked , they towed me to a Swindon Garage which was closed as it was a Saturday afternoon I think. I had basic AA cover so that's all he could do . Told me to ring the garage on Monday and leave the keys on a tyre (could have left them on the roof , that fucker wasn't going anywhere) . I spoke to AA man about getting to Clitheroe, he was sympathetic but couldn't do much about that , he said he'd drive me in the direction of Clitheroe until he got another call:thumbs: as we were driving and chatting , he told me I'd had a stroke of luck :cool: the AA computers had crashed so he wouldn't be getting any calls , so I did get to the wedding on time :thumbs: I got a lift to York the next day with a mate and stayed the night with her family #bitweird. Got a train from York in the morning .

    Rang the garage on Monday , they had a spare engine :hmm: and could get my 16 year old Fiesta back on the road for about £250 :thumbs: so this prompted my second Swinton trip, coach to Manchester , taxi to Garage , drive back to London
    Last edited: May 30, 2018
    ddraig, Dogsauce, kebabking and 5 others like this.
  19. danny la rouge

    danny la rouge Without music, life would be a mistake.

    I was gripped. It had adversity, even mild peril, well-honed description, likable characters, good structure, escalation of crisis, set backs, and eventual resolution of crisis, an engaging plot, an interesting subplot, a trustworthy narrator, local colour, and a new stasis after the climax. Well done.

    See that, Urban? This is the standard we're looking for.
    iona, fucthest8, BoatieBird and 8 others like this.
  20. DotCommunist

    DotCommunist slowtime

    I've urinated on a fair few hard shoulders in my time. Never in a bottle and leave it there though, thats anti social.
    danny la rouge likes this.
  21. JimW

    JimW 支那暗杀团

    Whilst I agree marty's is a very fine post the overall effect is I fear marred by the (understandable if regrettable) Swindon/Swinton confusion.
  22. JimW

    JimW 支那暗杀团

    And this was out of a moving vehicle, wasn't it?
    danny la rouge likes this.
  23. marty21

    marty21 One on one? You're crazy.

    Many thanks , spell check failed me. Have edited.
    danny la rouge likes this.
  24. JimW

    JimW 支那暗杀团

    Any sensible country wouldn't allow two towns to be spelled nearly the same like that.
    ddraig, marty21 and danny la rouge like this.
  25. Ax^

    Ax^ Silly Rabbit

    make a movie and have reggie dixons greatest hits as the sound track

    danny la rouge likes this.
  26. fuck seals

    fuck seals Well-Known Member

    This has the makings of a great thread /subscribe

    M5 southbound north of Bristol in heaving rain. Plod gave me a plastic bag to screw onto the radiator of my Mini Mayfair in front of the spark plugs. Poor flooded Mini...
    marty21 and danny la rouge like this.
  27. The Octagon

    The Octagon Stop...Hammertime

    I 'broke down' on the M62 coming back from Southport to Barnsley years ago (18-30 reunion weekend at a Pontins or similar, don't ask), turns out a 997cc Fiat Panda can't physically handle four 18 year olds of the larger variety :oops:

    Gradually rolled to a stop quite near that house right in the middle of the motorway, which I've always had a grudging respect for.
  28. marty21

    marty21 One on one? You're crazy.

    M62 again! :hmm:
    danny la rouge likes this.
  29. dessiato

    dessiato Ua Mau ke Ea o ka ʻĀina i ka Pono

    I blew up a Honda on the M62. I limped it back to Grimsby.

    I had a tyre rip off on the A1 at a slip road. I'd a car full of luggage and had to empty it onto the motorway to get to the spare.

    But my favourite sight on a motorway is the signs for the M25. I know I'm back home when I see them. Somehow the roads up to it from Portsmouth don't feel like home in the way the M25 does.
    marty21 and danny la rouge like this.
  30. not-bono-ever

    not-bono-ever Not what they want but what is good for them

    Operation Stack on the M20

    A380 likes this.

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