This page provides an archive of all the information produced about the Land-Line product created by EDINA over the last 10 years. The information is here to provide a historical record of how the Land-Line data worked.
The Ordnance Survey offered two products in the Land-Line range: Land-Line and Land-Line.Plus. The only difference between the two products was that Land-Line.Plus contained additional features representing vegetation and land cover. Digimap provided access to the Land-Line.Plus product.
Land-Line.Plus was the definitive large-scale dataset from Ordnance Survey until 2001 when MasterMap was launched. The data was surveyed and digitised to a high degree of accuracy at three source scales:
Only small amounts of England are covered by Moorland Land-Line.Plus; parts of each of Dartmoor, the Peak District, Lake District, Forest of Bowland, North Pennines, North Yorkshire Moors. In Wales, Moorland Land-Line.Plus covers much of Snowdonia, the Brecon Beacons and the spine of hills running between them. In Scotland, much more is covered by Moorland Land-Line.Plus including much of the Highlands and Islands, Shetland (but not much of Orkney) and the major blocks of lowland hills.
Land-Line.Plus contained accurately surveyed positions of the natural and man-made features of the topography, such as individual buildings, walls and fences, plus vegetation, landform and administrative information.
The data included outlines and divisions of buildings, land parcel boundaries, road kerbs, rivers and water features and feature names and was used to create Superplan plots needed for planning.
Land-Line.Plus digital map data can support software applications such as:
The accuracy figures depend on whether an area is classified as Urban, Rural or Mountain. The accuracy figures for each of these categories are:
The specification of Land-Line.Plus® is essentially the same in each of the 3 categories. However, in each case there are minimum sizes for features which are included in the data. These minimum sizes differ for Urban, Rural and Moorland tiles. For example, small recesses in buildings are only depicted if their minimum dimension is 1m for Urban tiles, 2m for Rural tiles and 5m for Moorland tiles. Similarly, some small features are generalised and represented as a symbol, rather than at their true size. For example, both banks of a stream are shown, unless the stream is below a threshold width, when it is shown as a single line. This threshold is 1m for Urban tiles, 2m for Rural tiles and 5m for Moorland tiles.
The coordinate resolution of Land-Line.Plus data is 0.01m.
Each tile in Land-Line.Plus is updated by Ordnance Survey and re-supplied to Digimap in accordance with their policy on revision and update. When using Land-Line.Plus data it is possible to determine the date when that tile of data was last updated by Ordnance Survey.
The date when the tile was last updated is stored in an 8 digit number, whose format is "yyyymmdd". That is to say the first 4 digits represent the year, the next 2 digits represent the month, and the final 2 digits represent the day. The date can be found in the Section Header of the data file which consists of a block of 6 lines near the beginning of the file, the first of which starts with 07 and each of the other of which starts with 00.
The date of last change appears at characters number 11 to 18 in the 5th line of the Section Header, and is known as the Digital Update Date. In some tiles this date contains 00000000: this indicates that the tile has not been updated since 1 June 1984.
It is important to note that the date which appears at characters 61 to 68 of the 2nd line of the Section Header, which Ordnance Survey document in their User Guide as the date when the tile was last amended, and is known as the Last Amended Date does not carry useful information for users, and should be ignored.
Please bear in mind that, in accordance with Ordnance Survey's policy on revision, the tile does not necessarily comprise a complete snapshot of the real world on the Digital Update Date.
Land-Line.Plus' contents are identical to the content of the traditional paper maps which were published at scales of 1:1,250 for Urban areas, 1:2,500 for Rural areas, and 1:10,000 for Moorland areas (sometimes called Mountain and Moorland). Although Land-Line.Plus is a data product, and not a paper product, its structure and content does reflect the same policies that the paper product did. The name of each tile is a Grid reference indicating its extent, and hence whether it is Urban, Rural or Moorland.
As was stated in the Ordnance Survey sub-licence agreement, it was not permitted for an institution to make printed or electronic copies of more than 10% of the whole of Land-Line.Plus for any purpose.
|Nominal scale||Tile size||Example Tile Name|
|Urban||1:1,250||500m * 500m||SK 0472 SE|
|Rural||1:2,500||1km * 1km||SK 0474|
|Moorland||1:10,000||5km * 5km (usually)||SK 07 SW|
In some cases the size and shape of a Moorland tile is smaller than 5km * 5km. See below for discussion.
Every location in Great Britain is mapped at only one of the Land-Line.Plus® scales, depending on whether Ordnance Survey define it as being Urban, Rural or Moorland. As a general guide:
The boundaries between each of these categories are always tile edges, which results in small areas of each type of ground being categorised as another.
Say you are looking for Land-Line.Plus® data for a particular area, but do not know whether the Ordnance Survey have categorised the area as Urban, Rural or Moorland. From a map you can work out what the Urban or Rural tile name would be for your location. How do you work out the Moorland tile name for the same location?
|SK 0371 NE|
|Urban||Rural||Remove quadrant letters from end of Urban tile name||SK 0371|
|Rural||Moorland||Take 100km square name
Append 1st and 3rd digits
Append N if 4th digit is 5 or more
Append S if 4th digit is less than 5
Append W if 2nd digit is less than 5
Append E if 2nd digit is 5 or more
SK 07 S
SK 07 SW
There is a "Land-Line tile selector" on the Ordnance Survey web site which allows you to examine the Land-Line tiles in any locality in Great Britain.
Moorland tiles are normally 5km * 5km. However, in some cases, part of the area covered by a Moorland tile is covered by an Urban tile or by a Rural tile. In such a case, the resulting Moorland tile contains no data for the area covered by the Urban or Rural tile. As a result, the Moorland tile can be an irregular shape, or can even be made up of disjoint parts. The smallest area covered by a Moorland tile is 1km2 (e.g. NZ 70 NE, in North Yorkshire), although most such tiles contain much more data than this.
For example, in the area on the West side of Buxton, the Land-Line.Plus® tiles that exist are shown in this diagram:
Tile SK 07 SW is a Moorland tile, and contains data only for the shaded area in the above diagram.
The data for the other (unshaded) areas are contained in Urban (1:1,250) and Rural (1:2,500) tiles. These tiles have their own names, indicating their location and extent. The tile marked * is named SK 0074 and is a Rural Land-Line.Plus® tile covering 1km * 1km. The tile marked Y is named SK 0473 NW and is an Urban Land-Line.Plus® tile covering 500m * 500m.
The following table shows the size in megabytes of tiles of Land-Line.Plus®; in NTF format, for each of Urban, Rural and Moorland tiles. In each case 2 figures are given: the average size of a data tile and the maximum size of a data tile.
|Number of tiles in series||Ground area covered per tile||Source scale||NTF (Mb)|
|Urban||67,039||500 m x 500 m||1:1,250||0.22||1.51|
|Rural||158,434||1 km x 1 km||1:2,500||0.13||1.12|
|Moorland||3,975||5 km x 5 km||1:10,000||0.25||1.50|
Land-Line.Plus includes limited information on height. These are represented as point features with explanatory text placed nearby. However, there is no explicit relationship in the data between the text and the height-related feature it refers to.
Heights are given in metres above mean sea level (or more precisely, above Ordnance Surveys reference datum, which was mean sea level at Newlyn in Cornwall measured from 1 May 1915 to 30 April 1921).
Features included in the Land-Line.Plus specification:
Area features in Land-Line.Plus are represented by seed points. The seed point carries a Feature Code describing the area feature type. The extent of the area feature is the smallest area surrounding the seed point enclosed by line features. Area features in Land-Line.Plus are used for roofed areas (codes 0321 and 0323), areas of vegetation and ground cover (codes 0377 to 0392 and code 1210), cliffs and slopes (codes 0396 and 0397) and areas of water (code 0400).
Aspects of administrative boundaries which are shown in Land-Line.Plus are:
The following boundaries are shown in Land-Line.Plus:
Boundary alignments have a defined relationship with the topographic features in their locality. This relationship is known as boundary mereing and is recorded as a textual description. The description of the type of administrative area that a boundary refers to is also usually abbreviated within Land-Line.Plus. A list of the more common boundary abbreviations which are used in Land-Line.Plus for the descriptions of administrative areas, and for the mereing of those boundaries can be found in the Abbreviations section.
Any line carries only one Feature Code. Therefore, where a line represents more than one physical feature, the following hierarchy is used to determine the appropriate Feature Code for that line. The Feature Code that is highest in this hierarchy is used.
An example is the Houses of Parliament in London. These are situated on the bank of the River Thames. At this point the river is tidal. The side of the building which is at the water's edge is marked by the mean high water mark rather than the building outline.
Each point or line object included in Land-Line.Plus is allocated a Feature Code to indicate the feature in the real world that it represents. Text found on a Land-Line.Plus map is also allocated a Feature Code, depending on the type of feature it refers to. Within the data, there is no explicit relationship between text and the point or line features to which they refer in the real world.
The table below summarises the Feature Codes that are used in Land-Line.Plus. For each Feature Code the following information is given:
Feature codes, or layer names, in Land-Line.Plus DXF data are prefixed by the characters "G801". For more information on DXF data download the user guide.
|0001||Building outline||Line||Outline of buildings, some internal building divisions.|
|0004||Overhead building outline||Line||Outline of open sided buildings, canopies; some internal building divisions which cannot be surveyed from the outside.|
|0007||Civil parish or community boundary||Line|
|0008||District, London borough or Unitary authority boundary||Line|
|0010||Ward or electoral division boundary||Line|
|0011||Boundary post or stone||Point|
|0013||Boundary half mereing symbol||Point||OR|
|0014||Narrow gauge railway||Line||Railway and tramway lines narrower than standard gauge.|
|0015||Standard gauge railway||Line||Each rail is shown by a separate line.|
|0021||Road (public) edge of metalling||Line||Kerb line or verge of public road surface.|
|0030||General line / minor building detail||Line||Hedge, wall, fence, small buildings.|
|0032||General ground level or minor overhead detail||Line||Edge of paved area, unmade path, cycle track, level crossing.|
|0033||Underground detail / course of antiquity||Line||Tunnel alignment, underground railway.|
|0035||Vegetation / Landform limit (minor)||Line||Changes of classification within vegetated areas.|
|0036||Vegetation / Landform limit (major)||Line||Pit, quarry, opencast workings, spoil or slag heap.|
|0043||Overhead detail||Line||Chairlift, electricity transmission lines.|
|0049||Pylon||Point||DT, OR||Electricity pylon, radio mast, lighting tower|
|0052||Minor detail||Line||Archway symbol, buffer, switch (railway)|
|0057||Point feature||Point||Post box, monument, spring, post|
|0059||Water detail||Line||River, stream, basin, dock, lock|
|0071||Mean high water||Line||In Scotland, mean high water springs.|
|0072||Mean low water||Line||In Scotland, mean low water springs.|
|0079||Parliamentary or Euro constituency boundary||Line||Constituency boundaries for Regional, National and European parliaments.|
|0321||Roofed building indicator (seed)||Point|
|0323||Glasshouse indicator (seed)||Point|
|0372||Positioned coniferous tree||Point||Individual named tree of historical interest|
|0373||Positioned non-coniferous tree||Point||Individual named tree of historical interest|
|0374||Top of slope||Line|
|0375||Top of cliff||Line|
|0376||Bottom of slope or cliff||Line|
|0378||Scattered boulders (seed)||Point|
|0379||Coniferous trees (seed)||Point|
|0380||Coniferous trees (scattered) (seed)||Point|
|0381||Coppice, osiers (seed)||Point|
|0382||Marsh, saltmarsh, reeds (seed)||Point|
|0384||Non-coniferous trees (seed)||Point|
|0385||Scattered non-coniferous trees (seed)||Point|
|0389||Scattered rock (seed)||Point|
|0390||Rough grassland (seed)||Point|
|0395||Upper level of through public communication (seed)||Point|
|1212||Ridge / rock line||Line|
There are also six Feature Codes for text:
|Text Feature Code||Feature Code Description|
|1000||Road name or number|
|1005||Administrative boundary text|
|1006||House number or building name|
|1013||Land parcel number|
Textual information is supplied with a code identifying typeface, an orientation and a height in millimetres. It also has a text location code to indicate how it should be positioned relative to its coordinates.
The attribute codes used above are detailed in the table below.
|DT||Distance||Distance from centre of pylon (Feature Code 0049) to edge of symbol, measured in metres on the ground.|
|OR||Orientation||Orientation of the symbol for a point feature from grid east, anticlockwise in tenths of a degree.|
The descriptions of real world features are sometimes abbreviated for cartographic clarity. The following table gives a list of abbreviations used within text in Land-Line.Plus, together with their full form and the feature code for that category of text.
|Abbreviation||Real world feature||NTF feature code|
|ALB||Air Light Beacon||1009|
|Allot Gdns||Allotment Gardens||1009|
|Amb Sta||Ambulance Station||1006|
|AVE or AV||AVENUE (named)||1000|
|Car Pk||Car Park||1009|
|CG Sta||Coastguard Station||1006|
|CH||Club House (Golf)||1006|
|CL||CLOSE (road name)||1000|
|CNR||CORNER (road name)||1000|
|Conv Home||Convalescent Home||1006|
|Corpn Yd||Corporation Yard||1009|
|CR or CRES||CRESCENT (road name)||1000|
|CT||COURT (road name)||1000|
|Ct Ho||Court House||1006|
|Ct of Law||Court of Law||1006|
|D Fn||Drinking Fountain||1009|
|Dismtd Rly||Dismantled Railway||1009|
|DR||DRIVE (road name)||1000|
|Dry Dk||Dry Dock||1009|
|El Gen Sta||Electricity Generating Station||1006|
|El P||Electricity Pole, Pillar||1009|
|El Sub Sta||Electricity Sub-Station||1009|
|ETL||Electricity Transmission Line||1009|
|F Sta||Fire Station||1006|
|FBM||Fundamental Bench Mark||1009|
|Ferry F||Ferry - Foot||1009|
|Ferry V||Ferry - Vehicular||1009|
|Fl Sk||Flare Stack||1009|
|Gas Gov||Gas Governor||1009|
|GDNS||GARDENS (road name)||1000|
|Govt Offices||Government Offices||1006|
|GP||Guide Post (finger post)||1009|
|GR||GROVE (road name)||1000|
|Gr||Grove (wood name)||1009|
|GVC||Gas Valve Compound||1009|
|I||Island, Isle (named)||1009|
|IRB Sta||Inshore Rescue Boat Station||1006|
|Junc||Junction (rail, named)||1009|
|JUNC||JUNCTION (road name)||1000|
|Km P||Kilometre Post||1009|
|L Twr||Lighting Tower||1009|
|LA||LANE (road name)||1000|
|LB Ho||Lifeboat House||1006|
|LB Sta||Lifeboat Station||1006|
|Leisure Gdns||Leisure Gardens||1009|
|Met Sta||Meteorological Station||1006|
|MH& MLW||Mean High & Mean Low Water||1010|
|MHW||Mean High Water||1010|
|MHWS||Mean High Water Springs||1010|
|MLW||Mean Low Water||1010|
|MLWS||Mean Low Water Springs||1010|
|Multi Car Pk||Multistorey Car Park||1009|
|NTL||Normal Tidal Limit||1010|
Post (preventing vehicular access)
|PCB||Police Call Box||1009|
|PL||PLACE (road name)||1000|
|Pol Ho||Police House||1006|
|Pol Sta||Police Station||1006|
|Pp Ho||Pump House||1006|
|Ppg Sta||Pumping Station||1006|
|PW||Place of Worship: e.g. Chapel, Church, Ebenezer,
Friends Meeting House, Gospel Hall, Kingdom Hall,
Mission Church, Mosque, Oratory, Salvation Army Citadel,
Synagogue, Tabernacle, Temple
|Recn Cen||Recreation Centre||1006|
|Recn Gd||Recreation Ground||1009|
|Roof Car Pk||Roof Car Park||1009|
|S Br||Signal Bridge||1009|
|S Gantry||Signal Gantry||1009|
|S Sta||Signal Station||1006|
|Sewage Ppg Sta||Sewage Pumping Station||1006|
|Smy||Smithy (in rural areas)||1006|
|SQ||SQUARE (road name)||1000|
|ST||STREET (road name)||1000|
|TA Centre||Territorial Army Centre||1006|
|TCB||Telephone Call Box||1009|
|TCP||Telephone Pillar or Post||1009|
|Tech Coll||Technical College||1006|
|Tel Ex||Telephone Exchange||1006|
|Tel P||Telephone Pole||1009|
|TERR||TERRACE (road name)||1000|
|Trav C||Travelling Crane||1009|
|TV Sta||Television Station||1006|
|V Ho||Valve House||1006|
|War Meml||War Memorial||1009|
|Wd El Gen||Wind Electricity Generator||1009|
|Wd Pp||Wind Pump||1009|
|WMP||Warning and Monitoring Post||1009|
|Wr Pt||Water Point (railways)||1009|
|Wr T||Water Tap (public)||1009|
|Wr Tr||Water Trough (public)||1009|
|Wr Twr||Water Tower||1009|
|Wr Wks||Water Works||1009|
These abbreviations are used in Land-Line.Plus for the descriptions of administrative areas. European parliamentary constituency (Euro Const) boundaries are being progressively replaced by European electoral region (EER) boundaries during 1999/2000.
|Abbreviation||Title or description|
|Asly Const||Welsh assembly constituency|
|Assembly ER||Welsh assembly electoral region|
|B Md||Boundary mound|
|B Mk||Boundary mark|
|Boro Const or BC||Borough constituency|
|BP||Boundary post or plate|
|Burgh Const or BC||Burgh constituency|
|Co Const or CC||County constituency|
|CP||Civil parish (England)|
|EER||European electoral region|
|Euro Const||European parliamentary constituency|
|P Const||Scottish parliamentary constituency|
|PER||Scottish parliamentary electoral region|
These abbreviations are used in Land-Line.Plus for the mereing of administrative boundaries.
|Abbreviation||Object or Mereing|
|B||Baulk, bank, base, basin, bridge, broad|
|C||Cam, canal, causeway, centre of, channel, cliff,
conduit, cop, course of, covered, culvert, cut
|D||Dam, ditch, dock, double, down, drain|
|DD||Double ditch or drain|
|E||Edge of, eyot|
|F||Face of, fence, fleet, foot, freeboard|
|L||Lade, lake, lead, loch, lockspit, lynchet|
|M||Marsh, mere, moat|
|MHW||Mean high water|
|MHWS||Mean high water springs (Scotland only)|
|MLW||Mean low water|
|MLWS||Mean low water springs (Scotland only)|
|P||Passage, path, plate, pond, post|
|R||Race, railway, ride, river, road, root of|
|RH||Root of hedge|
|S||Scar, sewer, side of, slope, sluice, stone, stream|
The following are examples of how boundary mereing abbreviations are used in combination to described the mereing of a boundary.
|Abbreviation||Object or Mereing|
|CB||Centre of bank, basin, baulk, broad, and so on|
|CR||Centre of railway, river, road, and so on|
|COCS||Centre of old course of stream|
|CCLW||Centre of channel at low water|
Mereing symbols are "lollipop" shaped symbols always found in pairs. They are used where the mereing of the boundary changes, for example where a boundary changes from running along the centre of a road to the face of a fence.
When two or more boundary features are coincident, a single line is shown using the Feature Code or layer of the most important boundary. A textual description is used for clarification. Where boundaries coincide with physical features, both are shown separately using their respective Feature Codes.