Now, here’s a thing. This is a teaser – I’ve got more maps. I have managed to get hold of Ordnance Survey 1:25,000 sheets covering Brownhills, just seven years apart in issue date, but there’s light years between them in terms of cartography.
The first is Sheet SK00, first edition dated 1969. It cost 45p when new, and I paid a lot more than that for it secondhand. It is probably the last first edition series map of our area to be published. It covers an area 10km by 10km, and is based on the 1912-21 complete revision. In reality, there were no major additions to this map since the 1950’s, and it shows. Look at the detail in the segment I provide of railways, woods and housing.
The second map is sheet SK00/10 Pathfinder series, dated 1976. I think it’s probably the first revision of this series covering our area – there seems to have been a prior one in 1975. It covers an area of twice the size of the earlier map, 10km by 20km. It’s based on the wholesale resurveying of the UK that took place between 1956 and 1974, and the changes, both geographically, cartographically and in terms of information provided are massive. The gap between these two sheets is only seven years, yet the gulf between social, economic and political changes it documents is massive. One of the most significant of these changes is the mapping of public footpaths. The government recognition of ramblers and outdoors people had begun. Thus was a real blow for the landowning classes, who fought the measure tooth and claw.
I’m posting a comparative section of each map for readers to peruse. Each segment covers the same area of Brownhills. Have fun comparing the two. Within the next week I’ll get the whole sheets scanned for readers to download. Have fun, and if you spot anything interesting, please do comment.