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Travelling People: Caravan Sites

Volume 508: debated on Tuesday 23 March 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what Ordnance Survey's policy is on recording illegal encampments and Traveller camps without planning permission on Ordnance Survey maps. (323229)

Ordnance Survey's policy for the recording of encampments and Traveller camps reflects normal data capture policy. The location of buildings, roads, tracks, hedges, fences and similar structures which meet the relevant map specifications are surveyed and recorded when they are considered to be permanent features in the landscape. Locations of mobile homes are recorded as though they were buildings, but only when they are occupied principally for residential purposes and have a postal address.

Judgments as to permanence and residential status are determined by the surveyor using the detailed mapping specifications, established precedent and experience in interpreting the physical nature of a development.

It is not within Ordnance Survey's remit to make any judgment on the legality or otherwise of any feature or development within the landscape. Hence the representation on an Ordnance Survey map of any features within a site containing an encampment or Traveller camp is no evidence of the legality or status under planning permission of that camp.