Woodland - OS Six-Inch Scotland, 1840s-1880s

Further Information

Woodland - OS Six-Inch Scotland, 1840s-1880s - animated graphic
Woodland - OS Six-Inch Scotland, 1840s-1880s - animated graphic

This viewer allows you to explore woodland in Scotland between the 1840s and 1880s. The depiction of woodland on the Ordnance Survey Six-Inch to the mile, 1st edition maps (1843-1882), is one of the most comprehensive records of ancient woodland in Scotland.

In collaboration with the National Library of Scotland, Zulu Ecosystems have extracted a layer showing the woodland recorded on the OS Six-inch to the mile Scotland maps (1843-1882), by following the historic symbology to classify broadleaved woods, conifers, and mixed woods. Zulu Ecosystems then refined this data through a combination of machine learning, post-processing techniques and manual verification to ensure accuracy. This enables comparison with present-day satellite imagery to identify these ancient woodlands.

These historic maps complement the Scottish Ancient Woodland Inventory (AWI) where the category ‘Ancient’ comprises of woods recorded as being of semi-natural origin on either the Roy Military Survey Maps of Scotland (1747-55) or the 1st edition Ordnance Survey six-inch maps from the 1840s-1880s.

Zulu Ecosystems have developed and donated this open access layer to contribute towards the conservation and protection of ancient woodland in Scotland.

The work is also part of the Zulu Ecosystems' Lost Woods programme which has been developed to support the restoration of derelict and dying ancient woodland. ‘Lost Woods’, where only 20% or less of canopy cover remains, are now eligible for carbon credits under the Woodland Carbon Code (WCC). This is beneficial to help incentivise and support landowners to regenerate nature at scale.

Zulu Ecosystems is committed to the continuous refinement of this layer and the layer is also open to contributions. If you spot any errors, please record them by using the Woodland Correction Panel.

Please note that you will need to access the layer through a desktop or tablet to see both the panel and the woodland layer at the same time. Both panels are not yet visible on mobile.

The dataset will be updated regularly, and new versions released, to ensure the highest possible accuracy of the layer.

The National Library of Scotland is keen to extract data from our collections, enhancing possibilities for research, learning and creativity. We are committed to releasing this OS six-inch woodlands layer as an open dataset on our Data Foundry.

Go to Woodland Overlay viewer.