The University of Southampton
University of Southampton Institutional Repository

Public policy and the digital geospatial representation of designated land use in the UK: part II

Saxby, Stephen (2007) Public policy and the digital geospatial representation of designated land use in the UK: part II Journal of Environmental Law, 19, (2), pp. 227-246. (doi:10.1093/jel/eqm007).

Record type: Article


In the post-war period, since the National Parks and Access to the Countryside Act 1949, successive UK governments have developed policies for the management of land use and marine conservation. This process accelerated at the Millennium with the passage of the Countryside and Rights of Way Act. Now, in 2006, the present Government has promoted the passage through Parliament of both the Commons Act and the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act, and a new Marine Bill is not far behind. If successful such measures will further expand and develop the means to secure and protect designated land and the marine environment. An important issue here is how the Government plans to embrace digital geospatial techniques in the development of policy towards the conservation and management of such geographic space. A more specific issue concerns the prospects for conversion from paper to digital form of maps of open country, commons, town and village greens and public rights of way that carry conclusive or definitive status in court. This paper, presented in two parts, looks at current developments and recent research on these topics and assesses the feasibility of such transition. In doing so it takes account of eGovernment and transformational policies and the mechanism to promote digitisation of records set out in the Electronic Communications Act 2000. It concludes that the adoption of geospatial techniques as a tool for developing policy towards designated land and the marine environment has much to commend it, as does development of a national geographic information strategy for government as a whole. Whilst the paper focuses on developments in UK law, the policy issues raised are applicable to all governments and jurisdictions.

PDF 52508.pdf - Accepted Manuscript
Download (152kB)

More information

Submitted date: 24 July 2006
Published date: 11 May 2007
Keywords: digital maps, geospatial information, geographic information systems, ordnance survey, digital national framework, marine spatial planning, rights of way, os mastermap, countryside act


Local EPrints ID: 52508
ISSN: 0952-8873
PURE UUID: d402c47b-f4ad-4907-b6ee-aac6d9cff8c9

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 10 Jul 2008
Last modified: 17 Jul 2017 14:40

Export record


Download statistics

Downloads from ePrints over the past year. Other digital versions may also be available to download e.g. from the publisher's website.

View more statistics

Atom RSS 1.0 RSS 2.0

Contact ePrints Soton:

ePrints Soton supports OAI 2.0 with a base URL of

This repository has been built using EPrints software, developed at the University of Southampton, but available to everyone to use.

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive cookies on the University of Southampton website.