PLAN OF SHREWSBURY
Cartographer: John ROCQUE
Size: 650 mm x 450 mm. Scale: approx. 10 cm = 1070 feet
Shropshire Archives ref: TP/12
John Rocque came to England as a child with his family from France. He started his map-making career by surveying and drafting plans of gardens and properties and then went on to surveying English towns in the 1740s. He was working at a time when English map-making was at a low ebb, with much out-of-date material being published. Rocque made careful surveys, calling on civic and local pride for assistance and support and producing large scale plans. He added finely-engraved pictures of major public buildings – in the case of Shrewsbury the Castle, the Free School and the Market House. These take up the eastern third of the map which allows a good depiction of the gardens along Abbey Foregate, but means that there was little space for Frankwell to the west. Rocque uses fine hachuring to indicate physical features and a variety of symbols to indicate gardens, promenades and orchards. Field and property boundaries are shown; there is a special symbol for hedges and individual trees are marked on the riverside. The Severn is shown as a navigable river and the quays are marked. Within the meander, streets and shuts are named, as are the major public buildings, such as the castle, gaol, churches, the Quaker meeting house and the charity school.
This map has no colour, but it is finely engraved and very clear.