Digital mapping guidance for councils released by national association

The National Association of Local Councils has released guidance for public bodies on how to effectively use digital mapping data and identify gaps in their current systems. 

Published in collaboration with digital map service Parish Online, the checklist showcases the important, and freely available, data that is out there for use by councils including from Ordinance Survey and Natural England.

person holding black smartphone

On the release of the new publication, NALC said: ‘Although many of these layers are available in other formats, there are many benefits to using a digital mapping system. They are available in one place and more efficiently compared, easier to share with others or through a website, and are automatically backed up and readily available even with staff and IT changes.’ 

Examples in the document for how digital map data can be implemented include making it easier to analyse constraints on planning applications, supporting public consultation on neighbourhood plans, and ‘creating council layers’ to monitor assets such as street furniture. 

The NALC has also previously released a toolkit to guide councils on how digital mapping can help councils to ‘understand the geographical area’ they cover. 

In a foreword to the toolkit, then NALC Chairman Sue Baxter said: ‘Digital mapping can enhance the effectiveness of service delivery, make local councils more efficient and help them plan for the future. Digital mapping is another tool in a local council’s armoury to help them deliver during this challenging time.  

‘NALC hopes digital mapping will also help build relationships between the different tiers of local government, businesses and community groups.’ 

Data highlighted in the documents comes from a variety of sources including English Heritage, the Environment Agency, Land Registry, principal authorities such as bus routes and national parks, and a council’s own assets such as land ownership data. 

Digital mapping is just one of the ways councils are using online data to better manage and convey information to residents and businesses, with Greater Manchester recently launching a digital portal to showcase public transport and active travel options to local businesses.

Photo by henry perks


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Help us break the news – share your information, opinion or analysis
Back to top