Travel and Transport
With superior rail and road links, Preston has good reason to boast about its connectivity
While not claiming exclusivity, the Guild City is ideally placed for access to four motorways, the West Coast rail main line and three international airports.
Some 55 years after Prime Minister Harold McMillan cut the tape on the Preston bypass; the first length of motorway opened in the UK, the M6 still plays a hugely-important role in linking London and Glasgow via the North of England.
That includes connections with Lancaster, the Lakes, Cumbria and Scotland in a northerly direction, and Liverpool, the Midlands and London in the southerly direction. And while the M55 leads to Blackpool, the M65 takes you to the east of the county, and the M61 to Manchester and its airport, across the Yorkshire border, and beyond.
If you’d rather let the train take the strain, the West Coast main line railway station – an integral part of Preston for more than 175 years – plays host to Northern Rail, Virgin Trains, TransPennine Express and First ScotRail services, with both London and Glasgow little more than two hours away.
By train you’re only half an hour from the heart of the Lake District, an hour away via direct services to Manchester and Liverpool, or an hour and a half from central Birmingham.
By bus or coach
While its design has proved divisive, there’s no denying that the Grade II listed Preston Bus Station is a major hub. And for many passengers over the last 40-plus years, it is the Guild City’s first port of call, with a variety of daily and special services using this modern architectural building thanks to local, regional and national operators such as Blue Bus, Lancashire United, Preston Bus, Stagecoach, Transdev, Megabus and National Express.