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01 O RDNANC E S U RVEY OVERVIEW

The world’s trusted geospatial partner


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OR DNANCE S U RV E Y

Inside Southampton, England: Home to Ordnance Survey’s head office. Cover London Galaxy map: Ordnance Survey data visualisation showing building footprints in Greater London.


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Contents Introduction

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What we do

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Creating detail Supporting government Driving industrial growth Keeping Britain active Taking our expertise worldwide

Collaboration 20 Keeping Britain safe Maintaining healthy eco-systems Working with partners Encouraging new ideas

The future

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Meeting future challenges Using emerging technology Enabling smarter communities Research and development

Our people

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Sharing our experience

Our story Innovating for more than 225 years

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OR DNANCE S U RV E Y

Introduction Location data is the hidden architecture driving businesses, building stronger communities, supporting governments and keeping the nation safe

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I N T RO D U C T I O N

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Everything happens somewhere We’re proud of shaping Britain’s place as a world-leading geospatial nation. As geospatial experts, we’re driven to produce location data at levels of detail and accuracy not created anywhere else. Now we’re making our data available faster, to enable decision-makers in government and business to meet the complexities of a changing world.

produce accurate data with universal coverage to recognised standards, which is why our precise location data is relied on to help deliver the government’s Industrial and Digital strategies. And why internationally we’re being sought out to help other countries become more geospatially capable.

ways to collect, update and provide data. We’re also attracting new players, new visions and new thinking at Geovation — our London-based innovation hub. Geovation is home to entrepreneurial thinkers and ‘doers’ and is allowing us to be a source for growth across the geospatial economy.

We’re excited about the future, because we know how location data has the power to create opportunities as we move to a more connected digital society. By sharing our valuable data and expertise, built on over 225 years of experience, we’re contributing to the future success of Britain and other nations.

We believe easy-to-access data is a catalyst for fresh thinking. We're supporting communities to use our data, accelerating new digital technologies and businesses, and enabling the Internet of Things. The new frontiers of the digital economy present Britain with the opportunity to remain a world leader in innovation.

Our future success depends on inspiring a new generation of geospatial thinkers, which is why we’re investing in longterm research and development. We're focusing on capturing data more rapidly, making it quickly accessible and expanding the use of location information.

Being a trusted partner to government and business means we ensure detailed and authoritative levels of location data and access for everyone. We’re hardwired to

At every stage in our history, we've used the latest geospatial technologies. Now, we’re driving innovation and investing in world‑leading capability to develop faster

We’re relied on for accuracy, because with trusted data we facilitate the many important decisions enhancing quality of life for future generations.

01 The Manchester skyline – Ordnance Survey data is underpinning Smart City pilot projects in Manchester.


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OR DNANCE S U RV E Y

What we do Creating, maintaining and distributing detailed information for Britain is a huge operation to keep the 500 million geospatial features in the master map up-to-date.

01 With detailed location data we support effective decisionmaking and analysis in every sector.


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Creating detail Every day, we make 20,000 updates to our database which holds 500 million geospatial features on England, Scotland and Wales.

Remote sensing allows highly-accurate mapping in areas which are difficult to access and gives the capability to efficiently collect data over large areas.

digital imagery; 3D models of the terrain and elevation features; road and water networks, and backdrop map data for contextual use.

This database underpins the master map of Great Britain. Keeping it up to date is a collaborative effort involving a global range of data collection suppliers.

In addition, our field surveyors collect precise location information using OS Net, our national network of Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) base stations which ensures all survey work is positionally accurate. This underpins the production of some of the most detailed and frequently updated mapping in the world.

GeoPlace – our Limited Liability Partnership jointly owned with local government, manages definitive address and street databases, bringing together information to create our AddressBase products. All postal and non-postal address records are geographically referenced to buildings and features in the OS MasterMap Topography Layer.

These updates to the master database enable us to create a range of consistent and up-to-date data products of Great Britain, including our most detailed digital map OS MasterMap™ with its Topography Layer; high-resolution

We’re continually refining our data content and presenting an accurate digital view, delivering this to customers in innovative ways to help effective decision-making and analysis over a number of sectors.

High-volume changes to our database are delivered by remote sensing. This involves an intensive programme of capturing change from aerial photography, sourced by our Flying Unit and from external suppliers. The resulting high-definition images are overlaid with existing map data on screen to check where features have changed. Instant updates can then be identified and made to our data.

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03 01 Our surveyors capture location data using equipment capable of achieving up to 1 – 2 cm accuracy, giving the most precise picture of the nation. 02 OS MasterMap Topography Layer includes building height data to help manage assets, plan works, visualise urban density and help emergency response planning. 03 Our aircraft fly all over the country between February and November. They capture more than 150,000 aerial images every year.


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OR DNANCE S U RV E Y

Our data capture techniques help us make 20,000 updates every day

200 115 Surveyors

Permanent Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) base stations

There are some changes that can only be captured by a surveyor on the ground. Our 200 surveyors use specialised equipment, including a tablet computer, distance measure, and a GNSS receiver, which pinpoints their precise location from satellite signals. This technology enables the highly-accurate survey or important features, including new buildings and roads.

62,000 OpenData orders every year

Ordnance Survey operates a national network of 115 permanent GNSS base stations – OS Net. This network, the modern equivalent of concrete trig pillars, sends raw collected GNSS data to servers in Southampton within 1/10th of a second. This data is then processed to model the GNSS system errors – enabling our surveyors to capture data that can achieve accuracy levels of 1‒2 cm. The raw data also feeds commercial services, is used by the Met Office to model atmospheric water vapour, and is sent to the academic archive at bigf.ac.uk where it is used in up to 80 research projects a year.

We’re exploring new ways to capture even more detailed features in the landscape, particularly at street level, such as lamp posts and bus stops, to support smarter communities.

90+

500 million

orbiting GNSS satellites provide OS with geospatial information

This includes vehicle-based surveying on the ground, using unmanned aerial vehicles, and collaborating with third‑party data suppliers. The high-definition laser scanner we used on a survey vehicle for the CityVerve project collected 700,000 points per second at a range of 100 m.

features in the master map of Great Britain.


W H AT W E D O

243,241 We collect data for every square kilometre of Great Britain. In any year this typically involves surveying activities from Shetland down to the Isles of Scilly, and most points in between.

150,000 aerial images captured every year

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Supporting government

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In communities across Britain, our work enables a safe, healthy and prosperous society. Our data is used by more than 4,700 organisations working for the public good in areas such as housing, the natural environment, connected transport and national security.

01 The UK has some of the best geospatial data in the world, creating economic

Our data is trusted to support policy and the delivery of public services at every level of government. From the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government - where we provide essential location data that helps monitor the development of new housing – to emergency services - where our data is used to better coordinate planning for and responding to unexpected events.

value for the nation. 02 Data visualisation of private gardens covering nearly a

The government’s Industrial and Digital strategies recognise the importance of location data for our future economy. A new Geospatial Commission is being set up to help Ordnance Survey among others to focus on where geography and spatial data can make a real difference in tackling the key government and citizen challenges. By working with partners across government, we’re helping to put ‘place’ at the heart of the UK’s connected economy of the future.

A closer look The London Ambulance Service (LAS) deals with approximately 5,400 emergency calls a day and has more than 250 vehicles on duty at any one time. To monitor ambulance crews’ locations and to enable a fast response to emergency calls, the LAS developed Geotracker; a real-time web-based mapping solution using detailed Ordnance Survey mapping data.

quarter of London. Designed by Urban Good CIC using OS data.


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Driving industrial growth Location data is driving growth across all sectors. We believe it will be the fuel to power the digital economy of the future. Right now, energy, utility, property, retail and finance companies are turning to our data to enable efficiencies in the services they provide their customers. Our data helps locate and manage underground assets and improve

01 M6 Smart Motorway project. Precise location data is key when planning large infrastructure projects.

service coverage. We help keep transport flowing, ensure online shopping gets delivered to the door, and underpin every property sale in Great Britain. Our role in supporting industrial growth is increasing. The nation’s largest infrastructure projects are being built using precise and trusted Ordnance Survey data. Planners for HS2

and Crossrail use our data because it can be relied on for its accuracy. With our partners, we’re pioneering innovations to support industry, and find smarter ways to solve complex problems, worldwide.


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Our geospatial data supports the government’s Industrial Strategy to improve living standards and increase productivity in the economy.

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Keeping Britain active We do this by offering an innovative range of products, from digital maps which can be synched across devices, to 3D mapping and augmented reality, and from paper maps and guides to GPS products.

Our location information opens up opportunities to discover the great British countryside, as well as keeping people fit and active, promoting physical and mental wellbeing.

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Photo by Danka/Peter on Unsplash

For more than 225 years Ordnance Survey has helped people explore Britain. Today, we’re doing it in much more detail. We make outdoor activity enjoyable, accessible and safe, inspiring people to get outside, find new places, create lasting memories and enjoy their leisure time.


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1,400,000 We’ve mapped more than 1.4 million routes in OS Maps.

03 01 Glencoe, Scotland. Our leisure maps are evolving to help people explore further. The OS Maps app includes 3D aerial and augmented reality features as well as all the detail of our iconic OS Explorer and OS Landranger paper maps. 02 Our GetOutside campaign is inspiring people to be healthy and active. Tackling rising levels of inactivity and obesity is a government priority. 03 Our products are part of the essential kit which makes the outdoors enjoyable, accessible and safe.


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OR DNANCE S U RV E Y

Taking our expertise worldwide

We’re working with countries all over the world. We use our expertise and capability to support sustainable development and deliver efficient public services – improving quality of life for millions of people. We offer advisory services, working with organisations, governments and other national mapping agencies to improve policy making and increase geospatial capabilities. We show how Great Britain’s public bodies are using the same approach to geospatial data and standards to save millions of pounds per year; reduce carbon emissions; make the best possible evidence-based decisions; deliver effective public services and plan new developments.

13 Ordnance Survey is currently providing advice to 13 countries


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A closer look United Arab Emirates

Singapore

In the UAE we developed a prototype palm tree and mangrove counting system to monitor urbanisation. Using deep learning techniques and an interoperable data model to store the data, we tested an automated change detection system for managing natural resources. This led to faster information about the impact of urban development on the natural environment.

We helped with 3D data modelling to create connectivity between citizens, businesses and government. We advised on how to best capture, generate, use and maintain data, meaning different city themes could be represented in a 3D information model. The result was a high‑quality, standards-based format on which Singapore can develop a comprehensive 3D spatial data framework.

01 Tanzania. We’ve provided geospatial training and assessment across government departments to improve public services and increase urban resilience.

0.6%

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83 million

Amount of GDP growth nations can achieve

In the last 12 months we've assessed

The world’s population is growing by 83 million

when using geospatial data effectively

and supported 20 countries to develop

each year. Decision makers are increasingly

their geo-maturity

turning to geospatial information for solutions to the challenges of rapid urbanisation and resource management.


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OR DNANCE S U RV E Y

Collaboration Great things happen when we work with others. By collaborating with our partners and customers, we can deliver innovation and provide the next generation of geospatial products and services.


C O L L A BO R AT I O N

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Keeping Britain safe We’re helping to keep the nation a safe place, whatever the event or emergency. We have a team of mapping and data experts across the country to help the emergency services and key government

departments with emergency event planning, response and recovery. We’re driving the use of OS mapping data as the basis for a single, shared view of a crisis a common operating picture.

We’ve helped thousands of responders join up and work together following storms, floods and terrorism, and we’ve helped keep large public events safe.

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01 Emergency services use our data for efficient planning,

A closer look

response and recovery. 02 Emergency responders on a

We’ve pinpointed key assets and risks, and analysed routes and diversions, to ensure that large events such as the Commonwealth Games, London Olympics and Paralympics stay safe and secure.

simulated exercise, using OS data on a single, shared platform.

Police and other stakeholders need a single, definitive and easy-to-use way to securely view and share mapping and associated data. For the London Olympics, for example, an Olympic Mapping Portal was created using Ordnance Survey’s complete range of mapping data, including aerial photography, and many bespoke datasets created especially for the Games. The portal contained more than 300 layers of information and was used by 46 external agencies.

365 Our Mapping For Emergencies service is available free of charge 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. For 30 years it has been helping category 1 & 2 responders and government departments in critical situations — including air disasters, floods, and missing persons.


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OR DNANCE S U RV E Y


C O L L A BO R AT I O N

Maintaining healthy ecosystems The quality of the environment – including air, water, land and green spaces, can make our communities better, happier places to live. Using location as a reference point, several datasets can be used together to monitor areas such as food and water security, health trends and habitats. Our data has helped government agencies and environmental organisations in their management, stewardship and conservation. It helps identify patterns that link cause and effect, and supports predictive analysis. We’re involved with many projects to make sure the environment is the best it can be, for everyone.

584,008 km We’ve mapped 584,008 km of rivers, waterways and canals in our comprehensive water network dataset.

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Working with partners We maximise what we do through our partner channel. Our partners are licensed to use, enhance and distribute our data, enabling millions of customers to access and gain greater value from it. Our 400 partners range from corporate multinationals to small innovative startups. They enable the use of our data in solutions across sectors including land & property; finance & insurance; energy & infrastructure; government;

retail; transport & logistics; computer gaming; advertising and analytics. They can supply our data, provide the infrastructure or software to make it work or, in many cases, both. We have an elected partner advisory council who represent the views, ideas and opinions of our partner community, sharing that insight with us and helping to shape our future initiatives.

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A closer look With our data, our partners are finding solutions to help manage and monitor land and property – and meet real customer needs. Using our addressing products and UPRN (unique property reference number), insurance companies for example can extract information at individual property level such as flooding, fraud and other insurance risks, and link this information with their own data. This removes the need for averaging risk across postcodes and allows them to create fair pricing models.

140,000 We fulfil on average 140,000 customer data orders a year.


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Encouraging new ideas Ordnance Survey is committed to innovation. At our Geovation hub in London, we identify and invest in startups. By encouraging small business growth, we’re supporting Britain as a world leader in innovation, and expanding the use of geospatial data and technologies. Running a startup incubator also gives us the opportunity to generate valuable insight on new technologies, markets and ways of working. The world is moving faster, and we need to ensure we adapt to serve up our data rapidly for our customers. Geovation is a great example of where collaborating with new ideas and entrepreneurial energy creates space for fresh thinking. And it's the perfect place to explore how we can remain a forward‑looking organisation.

01 We have business partners in a wide range of markets. 02 Our Geovation innovation hub in London is helping to grow the UK's 02

geospatial industry.


OR DNANCE S U RV E Y

The future Population growth, climate change, and disruptive technology are impacting every nation. Geospatial data is helping to solve the complex problems of a changing world.

Photo by Joshua Fuller on Unsplash

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T H E F U T U RE

Meeting future challenges with geospatial solutions We’re exploring how business can use location data more intelligently, through analytics, joining multiple data sources, data integration, and sharing platforms or environments. We’ll be at the heart of making national data connected and valuable, providing

the framework for a wide range of public and commercial services and helping the development of a ‘smarter’ more connected world. We’re leading machineto-machine use of data at a level of detail never before seen in national mapping agencies.

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Using emerging technology We’re always making the most of emerging technology to improve how we deliver the next generation of geospatial products and services to meet our customers’ needs. Thanks to advances in computing capacity, faster networks, sensor technology and ‘real-time’ information, we’re bringing fresh thinking to how our

data is collected, delivered and accessed. We’re refining image capture techniques and using multiple sensors in urban areas. We’re surveying with vehicles on the ground and unmanned aerial vehicles, and using pointclouds to inform 3D ‘digital twin’ models of the urban landscape.

learning so our data can be used for even faster and more detailed analyses. Together with a single definition of place, this helps everything from managing urban development to monitoring the environment.

Then we apply other technologies such as automatic change detection and machine

01 An image of an urban pointcloud. 3D laser scanners can collect thousands or even millions of data points on an object’s surface. The resulting pointcloud is an accurate data representation of the existing structure.


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Enabling smarter communities 01 Location data enables a range of innovative services to support the government’s goal of a more connected Britain. 02 Data visualisation showing the most trodden paths and publicly accessible greenspaces within Greater Manchester. 03 Manchester city centre – our data is helping cities become cleaner, smarter and greener with better transport systems.

To build communities with improved quality of life – better housing, air and transport – decision-makers need an accurate understanding of place. Many industries and technologies that improve our lives rely on detailed and accurate location information. The nation’s infrastructure projects turn to Ordnance Survey data in the early planning stages when considering new roads, housing developments and transport systems. With location data at the core, we can explore how to use emerging technologies to meet the complex and interconnected needs of society. For example, sharing vehicle location and movement data can help improve not just passenger journeys, but also safety, air quality and traffic flow. We’re involved in several collaborative ‘smart’ projects in which we’re looking at how location data can be modelled to give us a better understanding of how a geospatial approach can enrich services and lives in smart communities

of the future. These include the CityVerve project – the UK’s Internet of Things demonstrator – in Manchester. We’re supporting the next generation of 5G mobile communications, which relies on a detailed model of the built and natural environment to plan and optimise where infrastructure is installed. 5G will deliver ultra-fast and reliable connectivity with quicker reaction times, and will support ever-larger volumes of data. 5G will provide a core element of future smart services by enabling services to join up in real time over distance, and by underpinning a range of other applications, including connected and autonomous vehicles (CAVs); advanced manufacturing and robotics; augmented reality; smart agriculture; and smart homes and cities. We’re helping pave the way for smarter, more connected communities. Our focus is not on technology for its own sake – it’s on how we can use location data to help enrich places and lives.

£15,000,000 We’re one of 20 private and public sector organisations supporting CityVerve, a £15 million Internet of Things demonstrator project.


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Research and development We’ve always developed and distributed the latest geospatial technology. Our tech lab explores, creates and delivers working technology concepts including mobile apps, web services and other web-based apps. We’re working with research partners – from universities to space agencies – on topics including innovative camera technologies, machine learning, automatic change detection, augmented

01 We’re developing new ways for customers to explore with location data including virtual reality.

reality (digital wayfinding), crowdsourcing and high-accuracy GNSS positioning. We also explore new ways of enriching our data and delivering it for the next generation of users, who will demand even more content and detail. In the smart mobility sector, through the E-CAVE project (Enabling Connected and Autonomous Vehicle Environments), we’re helping define how CAVs can share

positioning and safety information in real time. We’re helping to accelerate CAV testing programmes using geospatial technologies and standards, as well as supporting the government’s vision for Britain to lead the way in CAV markets globally.


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25 Ordnance Survey supports 25 PhD and postdoctoral research projects in the UK and overseas.

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Our people We’re proud of what we do because we know it matters.


OUR PEOPLE

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Sharing our experience Every day, our people use their world class skills to deliver innovative solutions and grow our service offering as the nation’s mapping agency. Innovation is at the heart of everything we do. Our experts are not only on the cutting edge of collecting, maintaining and distributing data, but continually seek new and relevant ways for customers to get the very best use from it.

As well as surveyors and cartographers, we employ a range of experts involved in commercial, technical and engineering roles. We welcome professionals looking to make a difference to the future of location data and mapping at every stage of their career.

Together, we bring our passion for accuracy and detail to our work, because our reputation as trusted geospatial experts is important to us. Our thought leaders are re-imagining and re-thinking the use of geospatial on a global stage, improving lives everywhere.


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OR DNANCE S U RV E Y

Our story We've been mapping Great Britain since 1791, always evolving to meet the needs of the nation.


O U R S TO RY

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Innovating for more than 225 years

1791 With Europe in turmoil during the French Revolution, the British government orders its defence ministry – the Board of Ordnance – to begin surveying England’s vulnerable southern coasts. The Board buys a huge new Ramsden theodolite for the most precise mapping possible. Ordnance Survey is born. The principal triangulation of Great Britain begins – a huge survey that was the vision of an innovative young engineer, William Roy (1726‑1790). Five years before his death, Roy established a pioneering surveying baseline across Hounslow Heath. 1810 First recorded use of the name Ordnance Survey on the one-inch map of the Isle of Wight and Port of Hampshire. 1841 Height is introduced to Ordnance Survey maps, with levels in relation to a datum point at Liverpool. The Survey Act grants surveyors the right to enter private property.


O U R S TO RY

1855 Photography is introduced to map printing with zinc plates to replace lithography (stone). 1914 During the First World War, theodolites are adapted for use on the ground and in aircraft to compute the position of enemy guns and to map trenches. A temporary factory set up in France provides the allies with three million maps. 1918 The 20th century brings more cyclists and motorists onto the roads and ramblers into the countryside. Professional artist Ellis Martin is appointed to produce eye-catching covers for the one-inch maps. His classic designs boost sales to record levels, and maps are soon seen as essential by the general public. 1935 The retriangulation of Great Britain begins. 6,500 trig pillars are built on inhospitable peaks to serve as solid

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triangulation points. Many of these are still in the landscape today. The principle of ‘continuous revision’ to keep maps upto-date is introduced.

2003 OS Net is introduced to provide a national coordinate reference system which can achieve accuracy levels of 1-2 centimetres.

1974 The Pathfinder (1:25 000 scale) is used to create Outdoor Leisure Maps. The one-inch map is replaced by the metric 1:50 000 map called Landranger.

2010 OS OpenData is launched, giving access to free, unrestricted OS mapping.

1978 Over 100 staff are employed solely on the digitisation of maps 1984 Ordnance Survey merges with the Directorate of Overseas Surveys, bringing an international aspect to work for the first time, which continues to be built on today. 2001 OS MasterMap® is launched – a consistent and maintained database that records more than 500 million man-made and natural features of Great Britain in one continuous digital map.

2017 OS data plays a role in new technologies such as driverless cars and Smart Cities. The future Location data relevance increases dramatically to support fourth industrial revolution technologies.


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Ordnance Survey Limited (company number 09121572) is a limited company registered in England and Wales. Our shares are 100% owned by the Secretary of State for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS). We are a public corporation, which is defined in Managing Public Money as “a trading body controlled by central government... that has substantial day to day operating independence.”

Printed on recycled paper

The names OS, Ordnance Survey, Geovation and the Geovation Hub logo, and the Ordnance Survey corporate logos are registered trademarks of Ordnance Survey Limited. © Ordnance Survey Limited 2018 Mapping is protected by Crown Copyright. © Crown Copyright 2018

A00459_0418_02


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Head Office: Explorer House Adanac Drive Southampton SO16 0AS United Kingdom OS Grid Reference: SU 37294 15540 Latitude: 50 56 15.75 N, Longitude: 1 28 13.56 W, Height: 73.84m +44 (0) 3456 050505 www.os.uk

United Arab Emirates: +971 5045 17943 Saudi Arabia: +966 5352 93766 Singapore: +65 8497 1034 Hong Kong: +852 6117 1187 Presence in United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Singapore and Hong Kong

Ordnance Survey Brochure  

An overview of Britain's Mapping Agency. What we do, where we operate and how our geospatial data is benefitting Britain and the world.

Ordnance Survey Brochure  

An overview of Britain's Mapping Agency. What we do, where we operate and how our geospatial data is benefitting Britain and the world.