1897, the year in which these maps first appeared in The Royal English Atlas, was one of great celebration for it marked the Diamond Jubilee of Britain's longest reigning monarch, Queen Victoria. But there was much more to celebrate than her continuing occupancy of the throne as the previous sixty years had seen the greatest ever period of industrial development.
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The rapidly expanding industrial towns and cities were now the homes of workers who once laboured on the land but were now in the factories and mines creating and processing the needs of the mother country and the Empire. To record these changes the Victorians had become great map makers and the Ordnance Survey had already been publishing maps for a century. This series, created from Ordnance Survey maps, were coloured and published in book form. They are now available in sheets for the first time.