On Saturday we held a mapping party in the Warwickshire village of Tysoe (it’s really Upper, Middle and Lower Tysoe) strung out along the foot of Edge Hill. Edge Hill was the site of a Civil War battle in 1642 – fought just to the North of Tysoe, close to the village of Radway. We were based in the Village Hall to take advantage of its wifi.
Thanks are due to Mike and Sue Sanderson for organising the event, the local WI for providing the refreshments and the 55 residents who turned up to contribute. Contributions ranged from long walks along unmapped footpaths, geo-tagged photos, addresses and postcodes along with a wealth of local knowledge and history that only residents can provide.
We had a screen displaying OpenStreetMap live edits and people were engrossed to see themselves as part of a much wider mapping community, watching what was going on around the world and seeing their local contributions making an appearance.
Rob and I were hard-pressed entering the data provided, answering questions and demonstrating various editing techniques. We were both exhausted at the end of the day!
The map is considerably improved and will continue to evolve as the local community and Parish Council evolve a Neigbourhood Plan. Several people expressed an interest in developing their editing skills and we look forward to helping the good people of Tysoe develop their map.
We were so busy during the day that we forgot to take any photos of the event!
For readers not based in the UK the WI is the Women’s Institute – a venerable UK voluntary body set up in 1915 to revitalise rural communities by encouraging women to join the war effort in food production. Its aims have since broadened and it now the largest women’s voluntary body in the UK with over 200,000 members. You can find out more here.