Formidable, historical, long and winding – it’s the Snake Pass

Daniel J

With a name steeped in history and

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an accident record that tells a story all by itself, its little wonder that the name Snake Pass conjures up gasps and goose bumps.

The Location

Snake Pass is a particularly long and winding road that crosses the Peak District and links Manchester to Sheffield. As there is no motorway between these two, it is one of the only main roads between the two cities and as such, is busier than many roads in a similar condition or territory.

As it gets further into the Peak District, it becomes higher, less easy to cross and has very poor resistance against skidding.

The History

Snake Pass was first built to link Manchester and Sheffield in 1820, where it was primarily used as a toll road. In the 20th Century it was replaced by the Woodhead Pass, but remains just as busy. Many people mistakenly think that the name of the road alludes to the winding nature, but in fact the name Snake Pass comes from the emblem of the Snake Inn, which is one of the few buildings on the highest stretch of road.

Despite a dubious safety history, it has been rated as one of the best driving roads in the UK by Auto Trader magazine.

The Accidents

Many of the roads in the Peak District are known for their poor safety records, and Snake Pass is no exception. A Google search of the

phrase “Snake Pass Accidents” pulls over 5 million results within seconds and the road is frequently closed due to accidents, weather conditions that leave it impassable or landslips such as the one in 2008.
The Fans

So why is a typical moorlands road like Snake Pass appearing on this blog? The answer lies with the fans. As the length and layout of Snake Pass is so similar to the courses used in continental cycle racing, it is often used for bike racing, including the Tour of Britain. In addition, despite the dangers it poses, Snake Pass is a favourite with bikers throughout the UK.

Express Solicitors have a great deal of experience dealing with cases like this and if you have been injured in a motorcycle accident that was through no fault of your own, please contact our team today to discuss your claim free of charge on 0845 456 4006.

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