For 224 years OS has been mapping the changing physical landscape of Great Britain. However it is not only the landscape which has changed, Great Britain’s county boundaries have also changed over the last two centuries.
As part of a project with the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) OS has created two new datasets of county boundary information – of the current ceremonial and the historic county boundaries. The new datasets have been released through the popular OS OpenData portal – www.os.uk/blsupport
John Kimmance, OS Director of Public Sector, said: “The tradition and history surrounding counties remains of great interest to many people and we are pleased to be able to release free versions of these datasets. OS has traditionally only released administrative boundary data and we are delighted to be able to add the current and historic county boundary datasets to our open data portfolio.”
Both datasets can be freely downloaded, as either Shape or Tab files. The datasets include:
Current ceremonial county boundaries – this dataset features all 87 ceremonial counties for England, Scotland and Wales. To find out more on how OS created the ceremonial county dataset for Great Britain visit - www.os.uk/pdfceremonialboundaries
Historic counties – with this dataset users can view boundaries of historic counties such as Westmorland, Radnorshire and Wigtownshire from the late Nineteenth Century (circa 1888).
In addition to the free open data download both boundary datasets can be viewed on an interactive OS map at www.os.uk/counties