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London, Greater London, United Kingdom

latitude: 51.50732, longitude: -0.12766
Browse map of London 51°30′26.35″ N, 0°07′39.58″ W
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London is a city in Greater London, United Kingdom at latitude 51°30′26.35″ North, longitude 0°07′39.58″ West. It's the capital of the UK, biggest city in Western Europe, the birthplace of OpenStreetMap, and home to an active OSMLondon community of mappers and map data users running regular events

Twitter user@OSMLondon

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Local user group
OSM London Flag of the United Kingdom.svg
When: ~Monthly
Where: Different pub each time (map)
Mailing list
mailing list – archive

These events are free and open to all. We normally have a mixture of old OpenStreetMap hands and new people coming along to find out more. The events might include mapping, or might include "Q&A" presentations, but mostly we're just sitting around (in a pub?) having a friendly chat about little things like mapping the world and releasing it for free! We hope you'll join us! Everyone and anyone is welcome.

Upcoming Events

Pub-16.svg Mon 18th Dec - Monkey Puzzle

On Monday 18th December it's time for the Christmas OpenStreetMap pub meet-up at The Monkey Puzzle pub from 7:00pm. Whether you're a mapper, map user, or just curious, come join us to celebrate a Mappy Christmas with lots of beers and map chat. The Monkey Puzzle is here on the map, between Paddington & Edgware Road on the circle line, and Lancaster Gate on the central line. It's a little way away from the tube stations in a quite an obscure residential location, so you may want to find it using a map! It's a small pub, but if you think you may have trouble recognising anyone, turn up at 7:30pm when the group will be more assembled, and look out for maps or OpenStreetMap hi-viz vests. Also take Harry's number: O7979815O13

The pub serves food and most of us will probably be eating there.

Mark yourself as "attending" on if you fancy it. Not everyone bothers signing up. We normally expect about 5/10 people at the pub.

Humanitarian mapping events are still happening regularly. This page is not going to be the best place to stay up-to-date with those. Follow Missing Maps London on eventbrite. Typically there's one big event happening every month (beginners welcome) plus a smaller "mid-month" event.

Future events

We'll use this wiki page to announce events, as well as Twitter user@OSMLondon

Announcements may come at short notice!

There’s lots of other events in London e.g. tech meet-up groups, for which OpenStreetMap is relevant. Please use the wiki to pro-actively coordinate the setting up of an “OpenStreetMap presence” at these events… or just go along (Other OSMers may or may not be there)

We’ve got a list of London event venues for future events of a non-pub format. Please add to that if you have ideas or if your organisation would like to host or sponsor an event!

Past events

Date (2023) Area Venue listing
What happened?
8th Feb Victoria/Westminster Windsor Castle [2] A social pub meet-up (very well attended!)
9th May Euston Mabel's Tavern [3] A social pub meet-up
28th June Victoria/Westminster The Barley Mow pub [4] A social pub meet-up
19th Sept Euston The Worlds End, Camden [5] Mobile mapping training session and workshop
27th Sept Paddington The Heron [6] A social pub meet-up (originally planned to be at the Monkey Puzzle)
23rd Nov Kings Cross The Betjeman Arms [7] A social pub meet-up (originally planned to be at the Parcel Yard)

This series of events follows on from London/2022 events

This list is brought in from the London/2023 events wiki page (where you can make edits)

OSM Coverage

See also Central London for some focus on the centre, and Greater London for the wiki categorised region of England

Coverage summary

Coverage of London is generally good, but perhaps not as good as you might expect given the number of OpenStreetMap enthusiasts resident here. It's a very big city, so tough to achieve the kind of a "finished" even coverage that some smaller towns have. In fact the evenness of coverage is the real challenge, with some areas of London being mapped in glorious detail up to a certain radius of influence of a keen mapper, while other areas have less detail. The coverage within Central London is a different picture with different challenges compared to the various suburbs and towns-within-the-city.

In the early days, back when we used Yahoo imagery and GPS tracks to map out the road network, we were able to get quite a clear picture of which areas needed on-the-ground surveying attention, because the roads didn't have names! (Areas around Hillingdon north of Heathrow remained glowing red on the NoName map for a long time). These days it's harder to get an overview of this, and of course it depends which kind of map completion you're interested in.

Urban regeneration is rendering some areas out of date: for example, the Heygate Estate in Southwark being demolished and the Alma Estate in Ponders End.

Public transport mapping is a big challenge in London, although we also have a lot of enthusiasts keeping on top of it! The public transport scheme is now live, meaning that we will have to update the network: we have to complete the London public transport tagging scheme soon, so that all modes to ensure routing integration and cross-compatibility between the new and old schemes.

Of course we have complete coverage of the London Underground allowing us to render a Tube Network Map. List of London Underground stations gives a raw list of stations as we originally surveyed them through GPS. But there's more refined details such as track configurations, tunnels and bridges, as well as station details such as wheelchair access, platforms, and levels data to refine and maintain. Likewise for London Overground and National Rail networks.

We have good coverage of most bus routes in London, although these are constantly changing too because Transport for London frequently alters bus routes to cater for changing demand. Bus stops data is a big challenging, but generally also pretty good. Originally imported NaPTAN it may need positional refinement still in places, plus we can add shelter tags etc.

London also has good coverage of specialised information: Amaroussi has added and maintained Street light information for nearly all classified roads, Welshie has been doing most of the speed limits, while other users are adding lanes, sidewalks, surfaces, trees and even the London Congestion Charge.

London Boroughs

London is subdivided into 32 boroughs. Within our data we see these represented as admin boundaries, which are now all mapped out. See London borough boundaries for details and links to these.

London boroughs are also UK local councils of course, and with all of these it would be fantastic to see them making use of open geodata from OpenStreetMap, working with our community to supply change updates, or partnering with us to engage local communities via the process of OpenStreetMapping.

We could create wiki pages about the London boroughs.

Barking and Dagenham, Barnet, Bexley, Brent, Bromley, Camden, Croydon, Ealing, Enfield, Greenwich, Hackney, Hammersmith and Fulham, Haringey, Harrow, Havering, Hillingdon, Hounslow, Islington, Kensington and Chelsea, Kingston upon Thames, Lambeth, Lewisham, City of London, Merton, Newham, Redbridge, Richmond upon Thames, Southwark, Sutton, Tower Hamlets, Waltham Forest, Wandsworth, Westminster

…but note that wiki pages about small areas can fall into disuse quite easily, so don’t be too ambitious with info requiring updates. The London boroughs might be a useful subdivision for tracking mapping progress, but probably not through manual updating of wiki pages. In the past some automated tool used borough subdivision to good effect (e.g. the FHRS/OSM comparison tool) while others prefer to use post code districts (e.g. postboxes progress tracker)

The River Thames

OpenStreetMap began in London, and the Thames flowing through London was one of the first places where we pondered the challenge of mapping large rivers (in a way which allowed software to render it properly) discussing the details of Tag:natural=water+Tag:water=river. The tidal section of the river was initially brought in by the coastline imports, and then people tracing from landsat.

The River Thames rises at Thames Head (near Kemble / Cirencester map) or Seven Springs (near Cheltenham map) depending on who you talk to.

It flows through Lechlade, Oxford, Abingdon, Wallingford, Reading, Henley-on-Thames, Marlow, Maidenhead, Windsor, Eton, Staines and Weybridge, before entering the Greater London area.

Something not immediately obvious is that much of the Thames in London is tidal. This means that its riverbanks are technically part of the coastline. If feels a bit strange to be stood to the west of the centre of London in Richmond and be 'by the sea'. The Thames is tidal up to Teddington Lock - between Richmond and Kingston. map, through London (and Central London)...and out to sea. map

Out-of-copyright maps of London

There are some Out-of-copyright maps which feature London at low details levels. The most detailed is Richard's scans of the 1933/34 ABC Street Atlas of London (Torrent) (Alternative). Back in the early days (2007) we were able to try and use these to fill in some London details, or at least help us not get lost while we mapped London ourselves! These days there's nothing we can learn from them which isn't already better mapped in OpenStreetMap.

Related projects


See also: