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Civil protection common map symbology

The Civil Contingencies Secretariat in the Cabinet Office, working in partnership with Ministry of Defence and Ordnance Survey, has created a set of common map symbols to promote interoperability between emergency responders.

These symbols are now available for download from Ordnance Survey.


The symbols have been created in both a Vector format (SVG) and a Raster format (BMP) for use in a Geographical Information System.

Please download the symbols using the zip file links below:

About the symbols

The symbols were originally published to www.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/cpsymbology as a statement of good practice, the adoption of which will promote interoperability and enable shared situational awareness.

In response to customer feedback, Ordnance Survey has subsequently converted the point symbols into SVG 1.1 format which is a vector-based open standard that is widely supported. The symbols are also available as BMP files, as this is a widely adopted raster-format.

The core symbol set will be extended in time through collaborative work with emergency responder organisations, and progress updates, and further downloads, will be made available on this web page.

More information

For background to this project, and to appreciate the link between common map symbols and common terminology please visit www.gov.uk/government/publications/emergency-responder-interoperability-lexicon

Please also see the Ordnance Survey 'mapping for emergencies' pages.


We welcome your feedback and if you have any comments, suggestions or proposed additions to this core symbol set then please contact: : Claudine.Scatchard@cabinet-office.x.gsi.gov.uk

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