Old Hampshire Mapped

Strip Road Map Comparisons

instructions Click on a button on the index map below to select a road.
This road will appear in the left-hand frame: click on the segment you want to see.

index map
introduction Several books of strip road maps were published in the 18th century, following John Ogilby's survey. They describe themselves as ... OGILBY improv'd ...
... very much corrected, and made portable.

Some routes are presented here scaled for comparison. In the HMCMS collection there is good coverage of Hampshire by Ogilby, Senex, Bowen and Kitchin, and some odd sheets from other makers. Many of the complete maps from which these pieces are taken may be seen under the maker's name, or via the equivalent Ogilby map.

This presentation allows the user to make all sorts of comparisons between the maps. These notes are not systematic, just a selection of what we have noticed.

Ogilby's work is the foundation for the other maps shown. Many are laid out on pages in the same way. Most maps show similar mileages; however Senex and Kitchin have corrected the discrepancy at Basingstoke and later maps show different numbering from Bagshot and from New Alresford. Despite the claims, Ogilby's occasional errors in placenames remain, and very little new information has been incorporated. An exception is the inclusion of the coastline near Portsmouth on Kitchin's map.

Although Bowen's maps are of smaller and varying scale, and appear more like sketches, their content is particularly close to Ogilby's. Notice for example the trees between Winchester and Romsey which are grouped in the same way.

The exact lines of the roads on Kitchin's maps are usually close to those shown on Senex's maps. The scales are also similar except for Kitchen's Bagshot to Lopcombe Corner map which is much smaller, and differently arranged. Occasionally there is different mile numbering. Kitchin forgets to show the river Test when leaving Romsey on the way to Ringwood; however he plots more details on Portsea Island, including the coastline.

Most placenames are arranged in the same way (eg Austrey Wood between Romsey and Southampton), and some have mistakes in common (eg Ruthersick Park between Alton and Petersfield). There are differences in the spelling of some place names (eg Kingscleer/Kingsclear, and other words (eg downe/down, Ould/Old, fluv/R.), and Kitchin has added at least one new place Ditcham near Petersfield. Turnings to common destinations seem to be bracketed together in the same way.

Unlike Ogilby, Bowen and Gardner, the hills drawn by Senex and Kitchin are all the same way up. In later maps the way of representing hills changes; they become less pictorial, less prominent, and the drawing can appear more like hachuring. Several hills may be joined, as if to form a ridge, but this can be misleading; for example, at mile 35 between Basingstoke and Kingsclere, it is used for a downhill followed by an uphill where the road crosses a valley.

Buildings and trees appear in different styles but are similarly positioned, though Kitchin misses out some trees, for example in Bere Forest.

We have also attempted a modern interpretation of the routes, recording grid references which can be seen under Ogilby/Ogilby's Maps Analysed, also downloaded from there as raw data. These can be presented as lines (dotted where we are unsure) drawn on coloured relief maps, with contours at 10m intervals, and including the actual positions of some settlements and rivers. They can be shown as gradient diagrams.

A direct comparison with the historic maps can be made by viewing them alongside, in strips at a similar scale, and including the supposed positions of Ogilby's mile numbers.

These diagrams allow the appraisal of Ogilby's hill features. In addition, they may be of more general interest as it seems likely that relief was a significant factor in determining the routes taken between settlements.

References Box, E G: 1932-1934: Hampshire in Early Maps and Early Road-Books: ProcHCF 12: pp.221-235

Box, E G: 1935-1937: Hampshire in Early Maps and Early Road-Books-II: ProcHCF 13: pp.61-68

MacEachren, A M & Johnson, G B: 1987(December): Evolution, Application and Implications of Strip Format Travel Maps, The: The Cartographic Journal 24: pp.147-158

Smith, D: 1989(June): Strip Format Travel Maps: The Cartographic Journal 26: pp.39-41

General index

Old Hampshire Mapped