M11 rated England’s best motorway by road users

22 July 2020

The M11 has been rated the best motorway in England in Transport Focus research covering the year to March 2020.

In the 2019/20 Strategic Roads User Survey the motorway from London and Cambridge had the highest overall satisfaction of 92 per cent.

The best ‘A’ road was at the other end of the country, the A66 route across the Pennines from Scotch Corner to Penrith.

This is the second year of the independent watchdog’s new survey looking at the views of over 8000 road users about their last journey on a motorway or major ‘A’ road managed by Highways England.

Transport Focus chief executive Anthony Smith said:

“In the 12 months before the coronavirus lockdown, more than three out of four drivers were satisfied with their journey on England’s motorways and major ‘A’ roads – but some roads score much better than others.

“As drivers return to the roads it is vital that management of roadworks is looked at. With just 68 per cent of drivers satisfied this is clearly an area for Highways England to keep focussing on.

“Our research shows that if you’re happy with journey time, you’ll be happy with your journey overall. That’s an important message for Highways England as traffic starts to get back to pre-lockdown levels.”

Drivers were least satisfied with the M20 (which links London and Dover) for the second year in a row.

Commenting on the M20 one driver said: “Get the roadworks done – it’s been 50mph for too long – must be two years possibly…”

Commenting on an M11 journey a driver said: “Easy way to go, everything went well, no roadworks or holdups.”

Commenting on their experience on the A66 another said: “Quick journey, no hold ups.”

Other key findings from the period April 2019 to March 2020:

  • 81 per cent of road users are satisfied overall with their last journey using a motorway or major ‘A’ road managed by Highways England
  • 79 per cent were satisfied with the journey time
  • overall satisfaction with road surface quality is 83 per cent
  • the management of roadworks is lower – 68 per cent of those surveyed were satisfied
  • 92 per cent of drivers felt safe on their journey.

The least happy road users were commuters at 76 per cent satisfied, followed closely by those travelling on business at 77 per cent. Among drivers of vans and lorries 78 per cent were satisfied with their journey.

The Strategic Roads User Survey became the formal measure of satisfaction among users of Highways England’s roads in April 2020 as part of the Government’s second Road Investment Strategy.


Notes to editors

DOWNLOAD REPORT: Transport Focus’s 2020 Strategic Roads User Survey.

Motorways Score (%)
M11 92
M40 91
M61 89
M3 88
A1 (M) 87
M56 86
M65 83
M62 83
M6 82
M1 82
M5 82
M25 75
M27 74
M4 70
M23 64
M20 63


Major ‘A’ roads Score (%)
A66 90
A5 89
A38 86
A12 85
A47 85
A3 84
A1 84
A19 82
A46 82
A13 81
A2 81
A27 81
A23 80
A14 78
A30 67
A34 66

We spoke to over 8000 people about their last journey using a motorway or major ‘A’ road managed by Highways England.

Please see our data hub for further results.


Transport Focus’s spokespeople will be available for pre-records and for live to air interviews.

For further information please contact: Misha MccGwire, communications officer, Tel: 0300 123 0821 or email: misha.mccgwire@transportfocus.org.uk.


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