Ordnance Survey map records (1:1,250, 1:2,500 and 1:10,000 scales), Great Britain, 1841-1991 - Help

This application shows sheet lines and sheet references for paper maps published at 1:1,250, 1:2500, 1:10,000 and 1:10,560 for Great Britain from 1841 to 1991. This includes both County Series and National Grid maps. It also allows the specific dates/editions of 40,120 County Series maps, and 45,000 National Grid maps of Scotland to be searched.


This application is particularly useful for:


All Ordnance Survey mapping is in copyright for 50 years from the end of the year in which the map was published. Four copies up to A4 size may be made under Fair Dealing for private, non-commercial purposes only. Where further copies of these maps are required permission should be sought from Ordnance Survey Further information from Ordnance Survey on copying of maps under Fair Dealing.

More information on copyright can be found on the Ordnance Survey website.


We are happy to supply copies (as images, printouts or photocopies) of all the maps listed in this application. The maps are at the following sizes:

Further information on these sizes, prices and copies can be found on our Enquiries and Copies page.

However, please note that copies of in-copyright maps (published in the last 50 years) larger than A4-size or of whole sheets can only be made with permission from Ordnance Survey, or through an Ordnance Survey licensed partner. The National Library of Scotland is an Ordnance Survey Licensed Partner - read about our services for copying in-copyright maps.

To order copies, please contact us at maps@nls.uk, or write to:

Maps Collections
National Library of Scotland
33 Salisbury Place
Scotland, UK

Tel: +44 (0)131 623 4660 (direct dial)
+44 (0)131 623 3700 ext. 4660

Main search process

Choose the map category that you would like to search from the left-hand list. These are grouped into National Grid and County Series, and then from most detailed to less detailed maps. Using the map controls or gazetteer, zoom in and click on your the area of interest to see which maps were published.

The sheets that you have selected are highlighted in royal blue, and brief records of them appear in the right-hand panel. For all Scottish maps, and all County Series maps, this includes specific dates, and you can also select these to view further information about a specific map sheet.

Gazetteer, National Grid Reference, and Counties/Parishes for searching

The Gazetteer at the top of the map allows you to locate your area on the map using modern place names from Nominatim, as well as by British National Grid Reference - 2, 4, 6, or 10 figures (ie. 'SE12', 'NT1234', 'TQ123456', 'SD12345678'). You can also search using numeric Grid References as Eastings and Northings (ie. '123456,123456'). Further down, drop-down boxes allow counties and parishes (based on their names and boundaries in the 1940s) to be searched. In all cases, the map will then position to the place, National Grid Reference, county or parish that has been selected.

Background map

By default, the background map shows a modern MapTiler layer. Select the drop-down list to choose Bing road, satellite or hybrid layers, ESRI ArcGIS streets or satellite layers, 1920s mapping from the NLS Historic Maps API, OpenStreetMap, or Ordnance Survey Opendata as background maps. Double-click on the map or slide the zoom slider (upper left) to zoom in on the map. Hold the ALT and SHIFT keys down and drag with the mouse to rotate the view.


Hold the [Alt] and [Shift] keys, and drag with your cursor (ie. hold the left-hand mouse button down and drag) to rotate. Refresh the page or double-click the rotation arrow (top right) to return to the default rotation.

Screen Prints / capturing a screengrab


In the lower-right of the map, the location of your mouse position is shown as a British National Grid Reference, as British National Grid Eastings and Northings, and as longitude and latitude, both in decimal and degrees, minutes and seconds forms.

Linking to the viewer

The URL in your web browser address bar changes dynamically as you zoom and pan the map, and when you alter visible map layers and overlays. You may copy or bookmark the URL in your web browser address bar to save the current viewer location, overlay layer and zoom level.


This application uses GeoServer and OpenLayers, and was originally customised for OpenLayers 2 by Klokan Technologies.

Please email maps@nls.uk for further assistance, or to provide general comments/feedback.