Preserving a Nation’s Digital Map Heritage


Real life case studies

Interesting examples where data science is being used in real life situations to provide insight, help with making important decisions and improve lives.

Preserving a nation's digital map heritage

The British Library is one of the six UK Legal Deposit Libraries (LDLs)

What do they do?

How do they do it?

Preserve the nation’s published output for future generations.

A copy of every UK print publication must be given to the six libraries of LDLs, which will store and make it available for everyone.




The initial problem in 2013 was the need to find a solution for securely storing and providing access to annual snapshots of digital map data, what included map data from 1998 onwards. 

ThinkWhere developed an online system on their existing platform designed to securely store and access the copies.


With the changes to legal deposit legislation in 2016, the deposit expanded to cover material published digital and online and the system fell short and small. 

They needed a solution to support the deposit of data from the full range of UK data publishers with fully global coverage. And a map to provide with access to the content.

  • theMapCloud platform, a fully-managed platform and spatial data infrastructure. Content can be searched via a zoomable map, gazetterr of place names or grid reference.
  • A bespoke metadata management module for the input, edit and export of metada.