Wednesday, 7 July 2004


Green and plesant


Have you been to Multimap this past week? Next time you're looking at a map there, press this button. The map will fade into the background as it's overlaid with a photographic map of the area.

This is the Millennium Map, a photographic map of the entire country.

I'm a big fan of the Millennium Map. You can see it on Multimap. In some towns you can buy street maps based on it. (Including Cheltenham, where the photograph shows Greenbelt '99 being dismantles.)

But by far the most impressive product is getmapping's
Photographic Atlas of England. This huge hardback book is page after page of vertical aerial photography, seamlessly woven into a single map. It literally takes your breath away.

What I find interesting is that almost everyone shares the same reaction. "It's all so green," they say.

It's true. There's scarcely a single page that's covered in a patchwork of fields and hedgerow. Even the cities are dotted with greenery, and when you get to the Peaks or the Lakes, it becomes hard to find pick out buildings and roads.

So when I saw a news report this evening about the proposed widening of the M6, I found it hard to credit comments by the representative of the Campaign to Protect Rural England.

"There isn't that much countryside about," said Lillian Burns. I agree we should carefully look after the land we live in, but to suggest it's already nearly totally covered in concrete is just sloppy.

Posted by pab at 22:18 | Comments will be back later in the year. Please email me instead!