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OS OpenSpace

The OS OpenSpace service is free of charge and enables web applications to be built using datasets that are hosted by Ordnance Survey. The web-map builder application simplifies the process so that no specific technical knowledge is required.

OS OpenSpace was designed to promote experimentation with Ordnance Survey datasets. It is available for use by anyone – including commercial organisations – and enables web applications with a wide variety of functionality to be created. Advertising is permitted (with certain exceptions) and donations can be solicited for non-profit making, community or volunteer groups.

When considering the suitability of OS OpenSpace for your proposed use, you may wish to note that OS OpenSpace applications must be publicly accessible and not used for the internal administration of a business. Ordnance Survey data cannot be downloaded or archived and no charge may be made to access it.

OS OpenSpace applications may access Ordnance Survey data until defined daily usage limits are reached. Our data can be combined with other data provided you either own that data or it is licensed to you on terms that are consistent with the OS OpenSpace Developer Agreement. Users of your web application may also post their data on to it.

In simple terms, therefore, you can:

  • Display, and enable users of your web application to view, independently sourced data on an Ordnance Survey map. Ordnance Survey makes no claim to this data.
  • Use Ordnance Survey data to identify the location of a feature or to position a waypoint (which may form part of a route). This data will contain Ordnance Survey intellectual property because the position of the feature or waypoint was determined by reference to Ordnance Survey data. As a consequence, whilst you may continue to display such data in your web application for the duration of your OS OpenSpace licence – and enable users of it to create, store, download and use waypoints and routes – you cannot use that data for any other purpose.

Full details of the licence terms that apply

A twitcher's trail

Example of OS OpenSpace usage

Using OS OpenSpace, John has created a web map showing his latest bird sightings in the New Forest.

GIS mock-up

Ordnance Survey would claim no rights to the photos John has uploaded, but the route he has highlighted follows a path shown on the original mapping, so would constitute derived data. However, under the licensing terms of OS OpenSpace, he can share this route with other people and make it downloadable on his website.

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