Most of us know that Saint George is the patron saint of England – although fewer know the date of Saint George’s Day each year. We find it interesting that he’s so popularly identified with England and English ideals of honour, bravery and gallantry – but actually wasn’t English at all, in fact very little is known about him. He was probably from Cappadocia (now in Turkey) in the third century, but there is little that has been confirmed and it’s largely seen as myth. Despite that, he is also patron saint of many other places –Greece, Catalonia and Germany to name a few.
Talking about the 79th anniversary of the trig pillar this month has sparked a flood of reactions. Lots of our lovely followers on social media sent us pictures of them (or their dogs) with our trig pillars around Britain. Others expressed delight that they now know what those odd concrete pillars were for. Some wanted to adopt a trig pillar if we no longer used them (sorry, not something we offer). Still more people were amazed that we no longer use the vast majority of trig pillars and asked us what we use instead. The answer to that is OS Net.
Today’s guest blog is by Diane Sandeman at the Association for Geographic Information (AGI). The AGI is the membership body for geographic information professionals. It is an independent organisation which promotes the use of GI and champions its value for the benefit of every individual, business and the economy.
It was fitting that we had a Twitter question about trig pillars yesterday, as this month will mark 79 years since the humble trig pillar was first used for the start of the retriangulation of Great Britain. On 18 April 1936, a group of men gathered around a strange, pale obelisk in the middle of an unremarkable field in Cold Ashby, Northamptonshire. The shining white monolith would now be instantly recognised by any walker, hiker or geography pupil – and is often a welcome sign that you’ve reached the peak of your hike when you spot the trig pillar.
Length of route: 3 miles
Starting point: SU392399 (parking is available at the Abbots Mitre pub if you are going to be using the pub).
Suitable for: Walking
Maps: OS Explorer Map 131 – Romsey, Andover & Test Valley
Download our OS MapFinder app and record your route
Use OS getamap
We’re thrilled to be a partner at the Keswick Mountain Festival on 14-17 May. Taking place in the heart of the Lake District the packed programme includes speakers like Ray Mears and Alastair Bownlee, music from Mercury Prize winner Badly Drawn Boy and a host of guided activities including MTB biking, hiking, canoeing, navigation training, ghyll scrambling, climbing and so much more. There’s something for all the family with kids activities, food stall and exhibitors on site at Crow Park too.
We’ll have a stand at the event all weekend and you’ll be able to drop by and find out the latest news on our paper and digital maps to help guide you around the Lake District and the rest of Britain. We’ll also have a map fun zone to ensure all those budding geographers can be kept entertained. And – there’ll be a great competition for you to enter too!.
If you want to learn how to make the most of your maps, make sure you get tickets for one of our navigation workshops. We’ll be holding two over the weekend, taking place in the Adventure Tipi area, giving you all the tips you need to explore the outdoors with confidence.
The Festival Village is free to enter during the day, but if you really want to make the most out of the Festival Village, you can get free unlimited taster activities, including Adventure Tipi talks, with the purchase of a Festival Weekend ticket – and you receive 10% off all sporting events, activities and speakers – and of course you can stay for the evening and listen to the fantastic music line-up. Don’t forget to book your camping lot if you’re planning on staying over too.
We have 10 pairs of weekend passes to give away – all you need to do is tell us the number of our OS Landranger map for Penrith & Keswick. Just send us your answer on the blog before midnight on Sunday 19 April. We’ll pick the winners at random from all of the correct entries. Competition Ts and Cs here.
To find out more about the great line-up, visit: http://www.keswickmountainfestival.co.uk/
If you’re out and about exploring Britain over the Easter holidays capturing your adventures on camera, don’t forget to share your favourites with us – and you could win another holiday! We’re looking for photos from across the country to feature on our new map covers, rolling the new look out to stores from early summer. Our OS Explorer map covers are being picked first – so enter your active photos by midnight on Sunday 19 April to be in with a chance to win. We’re looking for photos that demonstrates adventure, this could include walkers, cyclists, runners, their rucksack, their bike or climbing equipment – anything that inspires adventure! Every photo chosen to feature on our map covers will then be judged at the end of the year to choose a grand prize winner, who will win a holiday in Britain.
Great news this morning, our latest OS OpenData products are now available for download. Announced last month, the four new products in our open data portfolio are OS Open Map – Local, OS Open Names, OS Open Rivers and OS Open Roads. Bringing our OS OpenData offering up to sixteen products, the latest offer you increased detail and accuracy and the opportunity for analytics. They are fully customisable and can work together or be imported and integrated with your own software and database.