Internet maps 'demolish British history'

Internet mapping is wiping the rich geography and history of Britain off the map, Britain's most senior cartographer warned yesterday.

Churches, cathedrals, stately homes, battlefields, ancient woodlands, rivers, eccentric landmarks and many more features which make up the tapestry of the British landscape are not being represented in online maps, which focus on merely providing driving directions, said Mary Spence, President of the British Cartographical Society.

As a result, such monuments could fade from public consciousness, she told a session on the Future of the Map at the annual conference in London of the Royal Geographical Society with the Institute of British Geographers.

"Corporate cartographers are demolishing thousands of years of history, not to mention Britain's geography, at a stroke, by not including them on maps," she said. "We're in danger of losing what makes maps unique; giving us a feel for a place."

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