[Spellyans] Disappearance of Cornish placenames from OS maps

Steven Whitehouse steve at chygwyn.com
Fri Feb 1 11:00:42 GMT 2013

On Thu, 2013-01-31 at 11:12 +0000, Ken MacKinnon wrote:
> That sounds extremely useful, Christian.
> I am not familiar with Open Street Map (but certainly should be).  Is
> it a sort of cartographic Wikipedia open to all to amend and correct? 
Yes, very much so. Also, it is (unusually) a British project, hosted at

>    If so it could be subject to abuse and all sorts of mischief. 
While thats true (and certain conflict zones in the world are no doubt
problematic) I've seen remarkably little of the kind of "edit wars"
which have afflicted other similar projects.

The people who run the project are very friendly and helpful and there
are a number of mailing lists where any questions or contentious issues
can be discussed.

So far as naming various map features goes, the rules are fairly
straightforward. The URL I posted earlier:

has most of the rules. So if there is a sign with something written on
it, then the "name" attribute should be identical to that sign (even if
the content of the sign is perhaps not correct). The additional
attributes then can be used to specify the Cornish (or other local name,
or combinations thereof). There is even a (somewhat sparse) specific set
of instructions about Cornish:

Like everything else on OSM, these are open to discussion so could
potentially be changed if there was general agreement to do so. Although
the language suffixes are only mentioned relating to "name" I don't see
why the same shouldn't also apply to "old_name", "local_name",
"alt_name" etc, too. Generally proposals which are reasonable will be

There is also a "note" tag which can be used to add an explanation to
other OSM mappers explaining why a particular decision was made about
the map feature in question, so that may be useful in cases where there
is some doubt, in order to avoid someone making an incorrect change in
the future.

There are really two separate aspects to OSM. One is helping to make the
database as accurate as possible, and the other is using the database to
produce various useful outputs (currently that includes the renderers
which produce the map tiles for the web site, various converters which
allow the use of OSM data on GPS/satnav devices and also there are some
projects making paper based maps from the data too)

I hope that is a reasonable summary of the things which are most likely
to be of interest to this group, but do let me know if anything is not


More information about the Spellyans mailing list