I’m surveying my way currently through Carlton NG4, which is the suburb next-door to Nottingham NG3. In all the days & weeks that I’ve been covering this area I’ve puzzled over why Carlton does not have a designated area in OSM + where to find it. I believe that I may have discovered the answer for both questions.
csmale has put in place GPX file downloads for Counties, Districts, Boroughs, Unitary Authorities and Civil Parishes/Communities in the UK (sourced from Ordnance Survey shape-files + converted into gpx files for easy import) — how fantastic is that! Nottinghamshire is available as a county and Nottingham + other Boroughs/Districts are available as a Unitary Authority. The next level down from Unitary_Authority/Borough/District is Civil Parish, and they are all available as well. Hooray!
The 9 English Regions are available for download from OSM in multiple formats.
There is a worm in every apple it seems, and one problem with the Notts CPs is that, whilst most have a name, eight do not. So, to try & help, and after ludicrous amounts of research, here are the best answers that I can find:
Nottinghamshire Civil Parishes (wikipedia)
(note that a Civil Parish (CP) has zero connection with an Ecumenical Parish)
OSM Wiki: What is a Relation
OSM Wiki: Relations for BoundaryLines
OSM Wiki: HowTo Add a New Member to a Relation
Proposal for UK Admin Boundaries
Parish Codes (2015)
boundary=administrative: (on the relation grouping those ways)
admin_level=2: (Border, external (with Irish Republic))
admin_level=4: (Border, internal (with Wales/Scotland))
admin_level=5: Region is “East Midlands”
admin_level=6: County/Unitary_Authority is “Nottinghamshire/City of Nottingham”
admin_level=8: Borough/District (eg Gedling, Rushcliffe District)
admin_level=10: Parish (eg Alverton CP)
designation=non-civil_parish(OS designation for Unparished parishes)
name:old=Hucknall Torkard CP
old_name=Hucknall Torkard CP
ref:gss=E04007984(Government Statistical Service codes; this is Kingston on Soar CP; obtained from within the Parish GPX)
wikipedia=en:North Leverton with Habblesthorpe
Unnamed Shapes Named:
Q: When is a Civil Parish not a Parish?
A1: When it is an unparished Parish
A2: When it is a Municipal Borough or an Urban District
In short, there are 9 areas in Nottinghamshire that, if it were drawn as a map of CPs, would have 9 holes within it, each of which is given the generic classification of being “unparished”. Whatever that means.
This is part of the former “Worksop Municipal Borough”. Currently, Worksop is a node. Worksop is unparished & is within the Bassetlaw district.
30 July: see Diary Entry and Relation 6447017
This is the former “East Retford Municipal Borough”. Currently, Retford is a node. East Retford is unparished & is within the Bassetlaw district.
29 July: Lord, but this one was painful & took forever. The previous author of the Parish boundaries had welded them to land-use areas (farmland, etc.) and rivers. Mile after mile after mile of them. Where the OS gpx & the former boundary matched closely I let it be. The rest was a life-deadening process of unweld & re-constitute. It took most of a full working day to finish one miserable little Parish. But now it is done & uplifted.
This is the former “West Bridgford Urban District”. West Bridgford is unparished and is within Rushcliffe district. The current West Bridgford residential relation contains a note, saying: “naive, includes Edwalton”. The OS includes both West Bridgford & Edwalton within shape_5732.
29 July: added; fiddly, but easy; some existing boundaries required lots of nips & tucks, others were already spot on the ball
This is a union of part of the former “Arnold Urban District” and “Carlton Urban District”, each of which is within Gedling district. Both Arnold & Carlton are unparished. The current Arnold CP relation is mostly the correct shape, but with errors (wrong name, little attribution, no ‘outer’ type, etc.).
16 July: boundary updated from shape_5749 + relation, etc. fixed
17 July: name fixed; entry s/b complete
This is a union of the former “Kirkby in Ashfield Urban District” and “Sutton in Ashfield Urban District”, each of which is within Ashfield district. Both Kirkby & Sutton are unparished.
28 July: this was so easy! (see Mansfield below), and is now in place
This is the former “Hucknall Urban District”. Hucknall is unparished and is within Ashfield district. A Hucknall (unparished) admin boundary relation (name:old=Hucknall Torkard CP) already exists, although the Relation is broken due to various missing features.
18 July: boundary updated from shape_5762 + relation, etc. fixed; s/b complete
This is part of the former “Beeston and Stapleford Urban District”. Beeston is unparished and is within Broxtowe district.
10 August: *finally tackling the last unnamed-shape as the final parish at the bottom of Broxtowe (pdf), this one is in process; here is a listing as I tackle the issues:—
(a) Unglueing the BoundaryLine from the River Erewash
(not my favourite activity) if you want to abuse the map & render it unmaintainable, then weld a BoundaryLine to as many other features as you can find. Naturally, if a boundary is legally attached to a road, river, whatever, then you can merrily merge away. Otherwise, please do not bother.
(b) The utter tedium of working from 1m to 10m and click-click-bloody-click along the line
Every BoundaryLine is already in place. After the entire circle has been reset, it is a simple matter of creating a new Relation (menu:Presets | Relations | Boundary)
This is a concatenation of the former “Mansfield Municipal Borough” & “Mansfield Woodhouse Urban District”. Both Mansfield + Mansfield Woodhouse are unparished, and each is within Mansfield district.
28 July: this was not easy, requiring fixes & repairs to existing districts, but is now in place.
- Unnamed_shape_9346 Nottingham
The hole at the centre of Nottinghamshire is unparished and was formerly known as “Nottingham County Borough”.
10 August: This was put in place weeks & weeks ago as “City of Nottingham” admin_level=8, but I never documented it here. First was “Nottingham (Unparished)” admin_level=10, using the existing hole at the centre of Nottinghamshire (admin_level=6), but then I discovered City_of_Nottingham.gpx in the District downloads (it is a ‘Unitary Authority’, admin_level=8) and that was identical to the hole. So in the end I added 3 BoundaryLines at admin_level=6, 8 & 10, all identical ways. Then today, whilst walking the bounds of Broxtowe, I came across yet another ‘Nottingham’ Boundary; it was identical to all the other three with the sole exception that the ways were unsorted & seemed not to be able to sort. It was also named wrong, since it was admin_level=6. In the end, I just deleted it.
(wrong wrong wrong, oh dear, what a palaver this mistake on my part has caused: I did not read the wiki correctly; “City of Nottingham” is a UA & thus is admin_level=6, not 8; deleting the boundary quite reasonably caused all kinds of upset reactions, although that did not stop the The Maarssen Mapper, someone that is not even based in the UK, from coming in & deleting the Nottingham Unparished Boundary - quite extraordinary behaviour)
31 July: fixing Woodsetts CP required a break & subsequent repair on a BoundaryLine containing a dozen different relations and several hundred members in total. After fixing Woodsetts CP I needed to reassure myself that those relations were still intact, so walked the bounds of each one, making sure that they were consistent & could be placed into a circle (see bottom). One of them was Nottinghamshire (admin_level=6, County) and that has Nottingham as an inner boundary (a hole). After creating consistency for both outer & inner I used the inner to create a Nottingham (Unparished) parish. The one missing item is that I am unsure what District (admin_level=8) Nottingham is in.
Updated later: the district is “City of Nottingham” (a Unitary Authority); that also has a .gpx available, which I used to make the now-normal nips&tucks to convert the entire boundary (where necessary) from ‘NPE’ to ‘OS_BoundaryLine’. Nottingham is most unusual. The identical shape is used for admin_level=6 (County, inner (the hole in the county)), admin_level=6 (UA) and admin_level=10 (Parish). The final, intriguing, comment to make is that Nottingham is the only Boundary line that I’ve met which contains circles (or at least, parts of circles) throughout it’s length, and usually for no apparent reason; I found that immensely pleasing!
Add/Edit a Parish Boundary HowTo:
In OSM a BoundaryLine is a relation that groups a set of ways; with a Parish, the beginning of the first way joins with the end of the last way to form a continuous loop. So:
a. 2 or more
nodesconnected together form a
b. 3 or more
wayslisted as members of a
relationwith the following properties set constitute a Civic Parish:-
c. Above are required; below is strongly advised:-
- set member
rolefor each way to “
- add an
place=hamlet|village|town|city; one only) to each Parish
It took me a long while to realise, but a combination of
Bing aerial imageryand
OS OpenData StreetViewis perfect for finding villages/hamlets; get very close then switch
Download OSM Data ContinuouslyON and you will normally find that the place is already named. Node it & name it yourself (with a vacarious thrill of discovery) if not (menu:Presets | Geography | Places | …).
I did this for the 1st time with 4. Unnamed_shape_5749 to edit the Arnold CP boundary to become (in the end) the Arnold and Carlton (unparished) boundary. My 2nd edit will use 6. Unnamed_shape_5762 to edit the Hucknall (unparished) boundary. I’ll edit this blog live to make sure that the instructions are as accurate as possible. It will assume that you have already installed & use JOSM on a desktop computer, that it is connected to the Internet, and that everything is up-to-date.
- You will need the fastest computer possible with as much memory as possible
My JOSM offline save-file is 437MB. JOSM seems to load all of that into memory at once.
- Start with a fresh load of JOSM; wait until the very first screen comes up; do nothing else!
- Use the
Filemenu and, if you have the option to
Download OSM Data Continuously, switch it OFF.
- Bring up Preferences (
Menu:Edit | Preferences...) |
Display Settings | GPS Pointsand put a tick in
✔Draw large GPS Points
- Outside of JOSM, copy the GPX url-link for the file that you are going to use
- In JOSM, use
Open Location...(Ctrl-L), paste the URL + press
OK(you should now be looking at a black screen with a magenta/purple outline)
- Use the “+” key and the “Ctrl+arrow” keys to view a part of the outline at high magnification
(it was 6 “+”’s for me initially) (once working, a length of “
3.00 m” at top-left on the screen is typical for me, going to
1mor less if more detailed work is required.
Download OSM Data Continuouslyback ON
- (this was probably a mistake): I loaded my save-file, obtained previously by
Save As.... It took forever to load. It would in hind-sight have been better to have let the machine auto-download from OSM. At high mag that is very quick.
- You now need the GPX trace + any prior boundary lines easily viewable in the window. It is almost certain that the magnification will need to be very high to be able to operate comfortably. Do NOT switch any imagery on unless you need to check the boundary against rivers, roads, etc..
- Unless the territory in front of you is perfectly virgin it is likely that, once highlighted, any existing boundary lines will contain more than one Relation. That means that you need to careful if editing any boundary, as it will affect all other relations.
SORT In my case, viewing the Parish boundary just below Linby, there are four: “Linby CP” (
admin_level=10), “Gedling” district (
admin_level=8) & “Ashfield” district (
admin_level=8). The fourth is “Hucknall (unparished)”, but it has neither
rolesfor any members. In addition, the last member does not connect back to the first (unlike all of the other 3), which suggest some kind of breaks in the chain.
- The first thing to do is to add
rolesfor each member (it can only be “
outer”, since there will be no holes within this boundary) +
admin_level=10so that it can look “Linby CP” in the eye.
- Next is to trace round the boundary circle, looking to try to find any errors in the chain. Here is my first example of the kind of mind-numbingly stupid ‘errors’ that you may find:
The boundary is following a footpath heading north-west through a wood and joins another couple of Parish Boundaries coming up from the left (south) on the edge of that wood. One of those boundaries (“Nuthall”) follows back down the track I’ve been chasing, whilst the other (“Greasley”) joins with the track I’m on, heading north. So far, so normal. These are the 3 values for “source” in those 3 tracks meeting at a point:
source=OS OpenData BoundaryLine(the track I’ve followed to this point)
source=OS_OpenData_Boundary-Line(the track joining from below)
source=OS_OpenData_Boundary_Line(the track continuing above)
Because the Relation indicated that the ways were disjointed I attempted to merge them, but those different source values stopped it. Sometimes I want to spit. All 3 were changed to
source=OS_OpenData_BoundaryLine, and all thoughts of merging the ways were abandoned.
One more feature was that originally the footpath & the boundary nodes were joined - a foolish idea if you want easy maintenance. Up to the 3 ways joining, the boundary track had been astonishingly accurate to the gpx track (much better than how I left Arnold CP). However, at the 3 way join it all went to pot, and I had to split them all to be able to conduct repairs. By going to the highest-mag the nodes could be placed side-by-side without needing to merge them.
03:25am: phew! painstaking small trims to the line of the Parish boundary to keep it true to the gpx track & after meeting up with yet another set of boundary line + relations (Broxtowe, Nottingham & Nottinghamshire) I finally am able to get all ways into line & it merges into a circle! Wow! dunnit. Here’s the overview of that specific procedure:
(A far simpler procedure than below: one of the JOSM buttons is a sort button; if it will not sort, then it is likely that a small section of way has been missed for the circle, so read on)
Lines of nodes are joined together into a ‘way’. Click on a line between 2 nodes in JOSM & all connected lines in the way will be selected. That way is given a number, and the Relation window shows all ways in order. So, the currently selected way that I’ve just been working on is
61594085. The next one will be
61594091. It is also currently the next one in the window below
61594085, but when I reached the junction of the two ways it was NOT the next one. I clicked on the “
Move the currently selected member up” icon within the
Members section of the Relation window, as I had for the previous out-of-order sections and lo! It was the final one to slot into position.
I have absolutely no idea what difference that will make, but it does mean that I should have finished my work on this Parish Boundary and, after saving & uplifting everything, I should be able to finally get to bed. Hooray.
02 August: added
wikipedia=en:North Leverton with Habblesthorpe as an example of how to add a wikipedia link, using the English village with the longest name (and one of the shortest Wiki entries, which is not too surprising for a parish with population=1,047 in 2011).
07 August: added change to GPS Points settings; I do not know how I managed to place/edit BoundaryLines before adding this setting. Also added wiki help on Administrative Boundaries.
10 August: Harry Wood’s WayDownloaderPlugin (find it at the bottom of Plugins via F12) is very useful for quickly finding the end of a Boundary way & thus the next Boundary that joins it. Nice one, Harry!