Huddersfield and Woodhead Turnpike Road

The Huddersfield & Woodhead Turnpike was a 14-mile toll road passing through Lockwood, Honley, Holmfirth, Holmbridge, Holme, and over Holme Moss to reach Woodhead in Cheshire[1] near to the border with Derbyshire. It reportedly opened in 1768.

The route passed through the following toll points marked on the 1854 O.S. maps:

From Lockwood, the route originally climbed Taylor Hill Road to reach Berry Brow, and then along Robin Hood Hill and Hanging Stone Road. However, this section was replaced circa 1810 with a lower-level valley road between Lockwood and Honley (the present-day Woodhead Road).[3]

In 1840, the Parliamentary Commissioners for Inquiring into the State of the Roads in England and Wales reported the following details of the road:

  • 13 miles 751 yards with 6 toll-gates and 5 chain or side-bars, passing through the parishes of Almondbury and Mottram.
  • "In good condition".
  • "All repaired by the trustees, except 440 yards within the parish of Mottram, which is repaired by the trustees of the Chapel-en-le-Frith and Unterclough Bridge turnpike trust, and 2 miles 1,357 yards, to which the hamlet or township of Woodland lead all the materials."

The route is now the A616 from Chapel Hill to Honley, then A6024 to Woodhead. The only major deviation to the original route was the removal of the hairpin bend — known locally as the "Devil's Elbow" and the "Devil's Corner" — at Heyden Bridge over in the early 1970s.[4]


The route of the post 1810 turnpike road is shown below, along with toll points and milestone:


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Notes and References

  1. Re-organisation of local governments in 1974 saw Woodhead become part of Derbyshire.
  2. Lockwood Toll House is not marked on the map, but known to have existed.
  3. The History of Lockwood and North Crosland (1980) by Brian Clarke. Huddersfield Highways Down the Ages (1949) by W.B. Crump, page 54.
  4. Construction of the realigned road by Cheshire County Council was well underway in 1972. "Motoring" in Huddersfield Daily Examiner (26/Jul/1972).