Ordnance Survey


Why OS refuses an exemption request

A few weeks ago I wrote about Ordnance Survey’s response to my FoI request regarding data exemptions and I must admit that I was pleasantly surprised at the high proportion of requests that were granted. The FoI response left a gap as far as I was concerned so I asked a follow up question “You state that refusals were because OS “considered the risk of release of the dataset, to OS or our partners, outweighed the positive […]


Ordnance Survey are pretty damn good at Derived Data exemptions 1

For those who are not clued up about the fine detail of derived data and exemption requests, the OS maintains that some data sets produced by it’s licensees may incorporate elements of OS data and thus be classified as derived data. If this is the case (most frequently where OS geometry is directly traced in the licensee’s data e.g. BLPU’s and planning application boundaries) then the licensee needs to request a derived data exemption under the […]


Drip, drip, drip – OS OpenWashing

Let me start by saying that I am a big fan of the Ordnance Survey and that I have many friends who work there or have worked there. Ordnance Survey’s detail, precision, currency and quality of mapping are the envy of many other countries and most of their staff seem to be dedicated to producing ever improving digital map products as their public task. So you are waiting for the ‘but’ and it is a big ‘but’. There […]


Dear Chancellor 2

The Right Honourable George Osborne 11 Down in the Street London Dear Chancellor I hope you are well. You must be looking forward to putting your feet up and sipping a nice single malt over the weekend after a the excitement of the budget. It’s been a pretty damn good week. Those nice people at OBR found you £27bn which came in pretty handy when you needed to ‘fine tune’ the austerity timetable. Then that amusing John […]


Ooooh – a round thing with spokes! 5

I picked up on the twitter conversation between my friend James Rutter and folk at CycleStreets about an application to Ordnance Survey’s GeoVation program for “a modern interface to UK wide planning application data“- note that OS is offering a share of £101,000 to the winners of this challenge, that’s quite a lot of taxpayer dosh. There was a tooing and froing about whether yet another initiative was needed to aggregate planning information. I have written before […]


Maybe, we shouldn’t create new OpenData? 3

This week I received a mail from Ordnance Survey inviting me to attend a launch of some new OS OpenData For the last few months, we have been very busy creating prototype OS OpenData products:1. OS Gazetteer of Great Britain – consisting of settlement names, road names and numbers and postcodes and their locations.2. OS Street View® – an enhanced street-level product that includes a lot of new map data features and content with an improved […]