The A13 is a major road in England linking Central London with east London and south Essex. Its route is similar to that of the London, Tilbury and Southend Railway, and runs the entire length of the northern Thames Gateway area, terminating on the Thames Estuary at Shoeburyness. It is a trunk road between London and the Tilbury junction, a primary route between there and Sadlers Hall Farm near South Benfleet, and a non-primary route between there and Shoeburyness.

From Wikipedia


Roads are a part of our daily lives, but few inspire singers to write love stories about them. This poem, as a result, owes a massive debt of gratitude to a man who took the journey between East London and the coast and gave it meaning well beyond simple transportation.

Mr Bragg has significantly impacted my life, and the road which we both have been inspired by remains the less-sensible means to travel in and out of town. You should really take the train, if truth be told, because it makes everything so much easier.

This is my acknowledgement that roads in this town are the start and end of pretty much everything.

A13, Trunk Road of the Free

Humble Bragg, inspired verse…
except I cannot play guitar:
Barking road exhales, evolves,
reduction, two becomes one lane.

Marking Hadleigh’s ending point
Castle ruined, heavy night
Tudor observance awards;
creative Storm, restaurants, bars
car dealerships sold, sharp decline
lead artery pumps life instead;
into construction, geezer pads
flat whites, brown, magnolia
balcony view, old traffic jams
traffic lights, new building site.

False start, dead end
avoid class cliches if you can,
but this is Essex, only way
embrace crass brassy overkill:
Leigh’s hipster beard,
waxed legs chin strapped,
Southchurch base honesty
intact, connected lines
across your app…
old people might still need a map.

My perfect home, borough
scored, three decades plus
this life, abhorred… redeemed
small steps; fear’s end, reward.