What is ONS Open Geography and how do I use the website?

The Open Geography portal from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) provides free and open access to the definitive source of geographic products, web applications, story maps, services and APIs. All content is available under the Open Government Licence v3.0, except where otherwise stated.

ONS produce a range of products that support the use of geography in the statistical process. The Open Geography portal allows users to find, view, map, style, chart and download or share data.

1. Find

  • Find a range of products that support the use of geography by clicking on the dropdown menus at the top.
  • Alternatively, use the search bar above to browse our data. Simply enter all or part of the dataset name you are looking for. or use the data category links below.
  • Or use the data category links below if you are using a mobile device.

2. View

  • Once you've found the data, click the Open in ArcGIS link
  • A new ArcGIS interactive map is displayed with the data already loaded
  • Follow the steps to set up how the data is displayed
  • More information can be found here. for viewing and analysing maps in the map viewer.

3. Download

  • Once you've found the data, click the Download Datasets button. You can choose to download a full or filtered dataset.
  • Next choose the format you want to download. You can download a spreadsheet (CSV), KML, and shapefile
  • The download will automatically start. Click the My Activity button to track the progress of your download.

4. APIs

  • Use GeoJSON (an open standard format designed for representing simple geographical features) or
  • Use GeoServices to consume ready-to-use ArcGIS Online services or
  • Use the OGC Web Map Service (WMS) - a protocol for serving georeferenced map images or
  • Use the OGC Web Feature Service (WFS) - a protocol for requesting geographical features across the web

Release Calendar

Upcoming releases on the Open Geography portal

Release Date Product Name
19th August 2016 NHS Postcode Directory (August 2016)
22nd August 2016 ONS Postcode Directory (August 2016)
22nd August 2016 National Statisitcs Postcode Lookup (August 2016)
26th August 2016 Standard Area Measurements for Eurostat NUTS and LAU Areas (2015)
2nd September 2016 Register of Geographic Codes (September 2016)
2nd September 2016 Code History Database (September 2016)
2nd September 2016 Hierarchical Representation of UK Statistical Geographies (September 2016)

Web Applications

A range of Web Apps created by ONS that help you interact with maps and data

Story Maps

Story Maps combine maps with narrative text and images to tell a story