Descriptive words on OS maps

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Creative Commons Licence [Some Rights Reserved]   Text © Copyright December 2009, David Hawgood; licensed for re-use under a Creative Commons Licence.

This is a work in progress. Through the Geograph discussion forum we are collecting examples of as many descriptive words as possible used on Ordnance Survey maps at 1:25,000 (25K) and 1:50,000 (50K) scales - and we want examples of others.

Note that maps may have changed since the examples were added, so words mentioned may not be on current maps.

Words on maps are of three types.
In this article we intend to list descriptive names, preferably by themselves, but if necessary as part of a distinctive name - for example "Palace" usually appears with its name such as "St James's Palace".

If possible we will give a link to a Geograph photograph of a feature, but until we have one we may give the grid reference at which there is an example.

Many of the words are the expansions shown in Ordnance Survey Abbreviations.

Tourist features have a symbol and blue wording on 25K, wording on blue background on 50K.

Historical and archaeological features have Gothic wording if non-Roman (before or after the Romans), Sans serif wording for Roman.


AbattoirXXST6879 : Entrance to the abattoir and Westerleigh Railhead
AbbeyXXTQ3079 : Westminster Abbey, LondonHere with Abbey/cathedral symbol on 25K, World Heritage symbol on 50K
Abbey GroundsXSP0202 : No dogs in parts
AcademyXNY3584 : Langholm Academy
AccommodationXSJ9382 : Moggie Lane, Poynton"Accommodation Cottages" built for miners
Activity CentreXXSD9036 : Coldwell Activity Centre
Adventure ActivitiesXSD7912 : Burrs Activity CentreTourist site
Agricultural CentreXXNJ7718 : Thainstone Agricultural Centre
Agricultural CollegeXXTL6707 : Writtle Agricultural College, Essex
Air ShaftXTR3243 : Ventilation shaft near Guston
Air terminalXXNF6905 : Barra Airport Terminal BuildingBy the beach airfield on Barra
Airfield (disused)XXNJ2665 : RAF MilltownWith name on 25K
AirfieldXNO4998 : Gliding Competition at Aboyne Airfield
AirfieldXTG2339 : Northrepps AirfieldAirstrip on 50K
AirportXXSV9110 : St Mary's Airport
AirshaftXSK3380 : Bradway Tunnel Air Shaft
AirstripXXTQ1761 : Air strip, Rushett FarmAir Strip on 25K
Aisled HouseXXNF7320 : Aisled HouseNon-Roman
AlmshousesXXTL9863 : AlmshousesNon-Roman
AMPHITHEATREXXST3390 : Roman Amphitheatre, CaerleonTourist site, Roman
Animal sanctuaryXTM3158 : All Saints, Hacheston: hatchmentTourist site. "Farm Attraction" on 25K map
Anti-tank BlocksXSN4104 : World War 2 defences
AquariumXXSZ0890 : Bournemouth OceanariumTourist feature
AqueductXXSY0783 : Aqueduct, East BudleighAlso see NN7358 : Footbridge over Tummel Bridge aqueduct where on 50K the word Aqueduct is in blue letters
ArboretumXSC2781 : The Arboretum at St.John'sTourist site
Area of Shake HolesXSD9970 : Line of shake holesThere are other 'Area of' entries
Artillery RangeXXSR9295 : Abandoned Farm Buildings, Artillery Range, Flimston
Arts centreXHY2509 : Pier Arts Centre, StromnessTourist site
AshXSU4575 : Towards "Ash"A single tree on a parish boundary
Assault CourseXat TL810851"Go Ape" Thetford Forest
Astronomy CentreXNX4039 : Craiglemine CottageCraiglemine Cottage
Auction GroundXXTL3994 : Gated entrance to the auction ground
Avalanche ShelterXXNG9137 : The avalanche shelters on Lochcarron to Kyle of Lochalsh road

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