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Lockdown leads the nation to explore their local area

15 Jun 2020

OS mapping has been an essential tool in supporting the nation to GetOutside safely during lockdown by helping people find new adventures on their doorsteps.

In addition to seeing the use of the OS Maps app, which has more than 3 million users a year, increase by 41% in April 2020 compared to April 2019, Custom Made maps have led us to see a revival in paper map sales.

Custom Made maps give people the chance to personalise a map with their own photo and centre the mapping on a particular area. With these maps often being centred on people's own homes, the increase in uptake reflects the demand for discovering local areas during lockdown.

Compared to May 2019, sales of Custom Made maps in May 2020 were up by 175%.

Words used in the title of Custom Made maps was also revealing, with Home, Covid and Lockdown being the top choices. The inclusion of Local and Birthday were also popular, showing how they are also being created as gifts.

As lockdown gradually lifts and people begin to explore more of Britain, a Custom Made map is an ideal companion for day trips and staycations. It also can make the perfect personalised present for Father's Day.

Ordnance Survey Leisure Managing Director, Nick Giles, said: “The increased demand of Custom Made maps and the OS Maps app shows how vital the service has been in helping people explore their local area.

"Whilst respecting government wishes and protecting the NHS, it has never been so important for all of us to look after our health and wellbeing by getting outside safely. We have heard from many customers how having a personalised Custom Made map has helped them discover areas near them that they’d otherwise not have found; we hope even after lockdown this trend continues.

“As measures are eased and we gradually move towards transitioning out of lockdown, Ordnance Survey encourages people to continue following government advice, to be responsible and to keep themselves and others safe.”

For more information on Custom Made maps visit

Ordnance Survey
By Ordnance Survey
Press Office

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