What are the different types of road in the UK?

There are a few different types of road in the UK. Many of which you’ll most likely have heard of. Broadly, roads in the UK can be sorted into one of three types. These are:

  • A-roads
  • B and C-roads
  • Motorways

Different Types Of Roads In The UK


A-roads are classed as major roads that link regional towns and cities. They are also sometimes referred to as ‘trunk’ roads. A-roads can be either single or dual-carriageways and are found in both rural and urban areas. At present, there are more than 28,000 miles of A-roads in the UK.

B and C-Roads

B and C-roads are sometimes known as ‘minor’ roads in the UK. They are the roads that connect small towns and villages together. Surprisingly, there are more miles of B and C-roads in the UK than A-roads, as they make up over 87% of the total road length of the UK.


Motorways are the high-speed roads that allow movement of vehicles between major towns and cities. At the moment, there are 2,173 miles of motorway in the UK spanning the length and breadth of the country for convenient cross-country travel.

Sealed & Unsealed Roads

If a road is sealed, it means that it has been given a surface treatment to ‘lock in’ the aggregates used to make a road. Sealing a road not only makes it easier and more comfortable to navigate, it also makes it safer. Surface treatments such as LockChip from BituChem work to secure the aggregate and prevent the ingress of water, thus making roads and pavements less prone to damage including the formation of potholes.

Motorways are sealed roads. This is necessary to allow for the high speeds (up to 70mph) and ensure the safety of drivers. Sealing high use and high-speed roads such as motorways also reduces the need for emergency and reactive repairs as they are more durable and resilient.

You are most likely to encounter an unsealed road on B and C-roads and unclassified roads. These are usually created from loose gravel and, while relatively safe to travel on at lower speeds, still pose a hazard and can cause damage to vehicles in a variety of ways.

How do BituChem provide support to the UK’s roads?

At BituChem, we have a long-standing reputation for supporting highways agencies and construction companies with the creation and repair of roads. In all projects, small or large, we take great pride in collaborating with our customers and bringing the best highway construction and road surfacing products to the industry.

We offer a complete and cost-effective range of road surfacing products, materials and solutions to meet every requirement. Suitable for all kinds of roads in the UK, our bondcoats, patching solutions, surface treatments and asphalt treatments are regularly used in highway preservation and pothole repair efforts nationwide.

Highway Preservation & Repairs

Our innovative highway preservation and micro asphalt products include a number of surface dressings and chip seal applications which have been developed through our multi-million-pound development. These include:

Asphalt Bonding

As highway bond coat specialists we use innovative techniques and applications to produce a range of emulsions suitable for bond coating. These include bespoke polymer modified bituminous emulsions such as PolyBond and traditional cationic emulsions such as BituTack.

Asphalt & Road Sealing

We also produce a range of hot joint paint and cold seal emulsion for road sealing surface joints. These are known as HotJoint, SafeJoint and ColdSeal.

Pothole Repair Solutions

Potholes are a common problem on many UK roads. So our surface technology has been developed to respond to this problem in a fast, efficient and safe manner. Our pothole solution products include:

  • AirPatch – an engineered sprayed application that repairs potholes
  • EasyPatch – a cost-effective manual polymer modified road emulsion
  • DragonPatch – an engineered application for outstanding highway repairs for use with The Dragon

As well as the above innovative solutions, we also offer un-modified versions of these products for pothole repair.

Learn More About BituChem

If you would like to know more about any of the highway preservation solutions, road emulsions or surface treatments listed above, please contact us. We would be more than happy to assist you with your enquiry and recommend the best product for your project. Alternatively, to see some more examples of how BituChem helps keep the UK’s roads in motion, take a look at our Case Studies.