This guide to spatial data focuses on physical space and symbolic depictions of it on the scale most familiar to humans: geographic maps. Ordnance Survey has been making maps and collecting location data for centuries. We have always operated at the cutting edge of cartography, and remain committed to this tradition of innovation as we look forward into the 21st century.

Our goal in creating this resource is to provide competent programmers and analytical thinkers with a strong grounding in the theory of spatial data so they can build and develop sophisticated applied uses of that data.

This is a…


What led to you innovating in this market?

Having worked in the planning and property business, we found a handful of problems within the sector. Alongside a lack of data, tech hasn’t been integrated well so a lot of older processes remain in place.

There is an abundance of data available through various partners, with OS being one of the primary sources. A lot of time needs to go into linking clean OS data with other datasets such as Energy Performance Certificates (EPC), planning constraints, planning applications, price paid data, company house data and much more. …


Ordnance Survey (OS) created the OS Data Hub a year ago to transform the way developers access and work with OS data.

In the first 12 months the hub has enabled more people to work with OS data across Great Britain, supporting customers in the private and public sector.

The growth of the OS Data Hub has delivered benefits to thousands of existing users of OS data resolving previous customer issues around access, usability and licensing of OS data. In addition, the hub has attracted a new influx of developers and organisations, from a range of sectors and markets, to work and innovate with OS data.

The APIs are helping save time and resources, allowing users to focus on using the accurate…


Many web forms we use online require us to provide an address — for billing or shipping details, routing, to get a ride and so on. It can be quite tricky for developers to create web forms that capture this address accurately. What happens if a road name is misspelled, or in all lowercase? What if there is another road with the same name in a nearby town? Capturing and verifying addresses is a difficult problem to solve.

The OS Places API is a solution to that problem. With the API, developers get on-demand access to AddressBase Premium, OS’s flagship address database. A variety of query options enable devs to match and cleanse addresses based on text, postcode, UPRN and location.

In this tutorial we let a user type in an address to look up, query the OS Places API, and fly to the location using the Vector Tile API and MapLibre GL JS.

Tools and APIs

We use data from the OS Places API and the OS Vector Tile API. …


What started as a student project to improve campus wayfinding has evolved into helping students reclaim the university campus experience that’s been taken from them.

As a result of the pandemic and subsequent lockdown measures, university students have been denied what most would consider the ‘typical’ university campus experience. Seminars have been replaced with online classes; students have been encouraged to stay home or in their halls of residence; and social interaction in general has been at an all-time low.

Adapting to the new normal

These have not been average academic years. Added to the significant effect on students’ mental health, it simply isn’t the…


Data can be incredibly useful. By analysing or interpreting the information contained in data, better decisions can be made.

Ordnance Survey is one of the world’s oldest data organisations. We have gathered information about Great Britain since 1791, organising, analysing and disseminating maps and other information. As information technologies have evolved from tables and charts and pen-and-paper calculations to databases, vector graphics and sophisticated machine learning algorithms, OS has been a leader in adopting and innovating new ways to capture, store, process and share valuable location information.

The challenge — managing data

As the scale of data grows, so does its potential usefulness — and the complexity of managing it. Understanding a small table of numbers is easy, less so for a complex database…

OS Developer

Ordnance Survey provides the most authoritative data of Great Britain’s landscape to fuel innovation in geospatial application development.

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