FRANKWELL (SHREWSBURY), 1:2500 COUNTY SERIES, SHROPSHIRE SHEET XXXIV 10, FIRST EDITION
Sheet size: 1000 mm x 700 mm. Scale: 25 inches to 1 mile
Shropshire Archives ref: X8989/2/2
This large-scale map, at 25 inches to a mile, is part of an important series first published by the Ordnance Survey in the second part of the 19C. The series covered the whole of the country, except for areas that were considered to be ‘uncultivated’, and was completed by 1890. They depict the landscape in great detail and with great accuracy. The illustrated map shows a densely urban area, including the medieval suburb of Frankwell with numerous narrow passages and a maze of terraced cottages in courtyards. The map stretches from the extensive plant nursery in the west (near the Porthill ferry, now the footbridge) to the Welsh Bridge in the east and shows Millington Hospital in the north and Mardol in central Shrewsbury in the south. Detached villas in their own gardens are named and timber yards, sawmills, malthouses, schools and chapels are labelled.
The aim was to depict the permanent features of the man-made landscape at ground level, complying with a rule that features had to cover 8 m2 to be shown, though there were some exceptions, as for small buildings in detached positions. It is difficult to work out the physical relief, although many bench marks and spot heights are given. Gravel pits are clearly shown as are mud banks in the river and there is also hachuring for steep slopes on the river bank. There is a huge amount of detail on this map and occasionally the labelling can conceal other features. It was in fact surveyed at a scale of 1:1,250 and then reduced by half. Up to 1879, the maps were accompanied by Books of Reference or “area books”, but the Shropshire sheets were published after this date and acreages were printed on the maps instead.