The UK’s ‘most insane’ roundabout made up of 6 circles drivers say was 'designed by Satan'

April 13, 2024
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A roundabout in Swindon that has caused much confusion for motorists has been dubbed a “disaster” by some who can’t work out how to use it. The Magic Roundabout has gone viral several times as Brits attempt to work out how to use the major junction that is made up of six roundabouts in total.

Connecting five major roads, the roundabout is essential but can startle motorists approaching it for the first time. Its unusual design consists of five mini-roundabouts arranged around a sixth central, anti-clockwise roundabout.

Located near the County Ground football stadium, the roundabout opened in September 1972 and has become commonly known as the Magic Roundabout due to its unique design.

The local authority officially named the junction County Islands Roundabout.

It’s so confusing that motorists have put together guides for those wanting to know how to use it ahead of time.

The combination of traffic islands known as a “ring junction” was the brainchild of the British Transport and Road Research Laboratory and Swindon Borough Council’s highways department.

It was designed to replace the old Drove Roundabout junction, which had seen a number of accidents and was considered to be dangerous.

When it opened in 1972, police were stationed at each mini roundabout during the pilot phase to assist drivers and oversee how traffic coped with the unique design.

And despite its confusing design, relatively few accidents have been recorded at the roundabout, making it a success. Despite this, a December 2007 survey by the Highway Insurance Agency found that the roundabout was voted the seventh most feared road junction in the country.

In reviews left on Tripadvisor, motorists shared their experience of using the busy junction. One person wrote: “So confusing I no longer use it. How there are not more accidents I don’t know.”

Another said: “This roundabout is a nightmare and as a Swindon resident, I avoid it at all costs! Cars come at you from all directions and one never really knows who has right of way!”

A third added: “Driving home after being diverted off the M4 twice at midnight, this monstrosity is one way to slap yourself silly. Totally confused me and Tesco lorry driver. Satan himself designed this.”



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