• Spatial Information Service

    The Spatial Information Service is part of the Improvement Service. It provides technical support and guidance to improve the management and availability of spatial information owned by Scottish local government. The service is responsible for the development and operational management of the Spatial Hub and the One Scotland Gazetteer.


    The service works directly for Scottish local government and collaborates closely with strategic partners to ensure that improved spatial information management increases value to data owners and the wider Scottish community. It keeps the local government community up to date on Scottish, UK and EU legislation and regulation, including INSPIRE, and supports Scottish local government to achieve compliance.


    The Spatial Information Service will, in time, centralise the efforts associated with the improvement of spatial information management across local government, resulting in long term efficiency gains and cost savings by using software, systems and methods which are innovative, reliable and of world class excellence. This includes a cloud hosted technical infrastructure built with open source software as well as a portal to allow the upload and download of data.


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  • Spatial Hub

    The Spatial Hub is a resource which provides a single point of access to quality assured Scottish local authority data in a consistent format. It is developed, operated and managed by the Spatial Information Service within the Improvement Service.


    Individual local authorities provide datasets to the Spatial Hub where they are conflated into a standardised format and published as a national dataset. The benefits are:


    For local authorities

    • Saving local authorities time, money and effort as it removes the need to develop their own portals to publish data as required under the INSPIRE directive.
    • Reducing the resources required by individual authorities to answer Freedom of Information requests regarding spatial data.


    For commercial organisation and members of the public

    • Providing easy and efficient access to consistent national layers of local authority data.


    The Spatial Hub was launched with the following 12 datasets:


    • Green Belt Areas
    • Vacant and Derelict Land
    • Paths and Core Paths
    • Local Nature Reserves
    • Housing Land Supply
    • Local Nature Conservation Sites
    • Community Council Boundaries
    • Local Landscape Designation
    • School Catchments
    • Contaminated Land
    • Town Centres Air Quality Management Areas


    More datasets will be added so please check the Spatial Hub website at www.spatialhub.scot for news about available datasets and for further details and announcements.


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  • One Scotland Gazetteer

    The One Scotland Gazetteer (OSG) is an address dataset that comprises up-to-date data, maintained by each of Scotland’s 32 local authorities.


    The information stems from local authority functions, including Planning, Building Standards and Street Naming and Numbering which are the foundations for all address intelligence.



    The local gazetteers are collated by the Spatial Information Service within the Improvement Service, where robust quality assurance is undertaken to ensure currency and consistency. Consequently, the OSG dataset adheres to nationally agreed conventions and is held in a standardised structure that conforms to the British Standard for addressing.



    The OSG dates back to 2003, when the then Scottish Executive provided £7.5m of funding, along with £2.5m from Scottish local authorities, to create a national gazetteer which would support the delivery of modern public services in Scotland.


    Unique Property Reference Number

    Crucially, the OSG holds the unique property reference number that provides a common thread that allows the linking of information held in disparate systems.



    The OSG is made freely available to members of the One Scotland Mapping Agreement and is used throughout the Scottish public sector, including the emergency services, e-Planning, ScotLIS, the Energy Savings Trust, SEPA, myaccount, assessor and the electoral register.


    In Scotland, the OSG forms the foundation for Ordnance Survey’s AddressBase product suite.



    • A faster, more efficient public services through a centralised address source
    • Access to the most comprehensive and up-to-date addressing dataset for Scotland
    • High level of data currency and reliability along with a robust change feedback mechanism ensuring user confidence
    • Supporting multiple-government applications through the UPRN
    • A spatial reference for every record means that other non-spatial data can be incorporated into Geographical Information Systems
    • Access to the status of a property and important dates in its lifecycle
    • Access to added-value data associated with land and property, for example use classification or occupier
    • Assists public sector bodies in compliance with the European Union’s INSPIRE obligations
    • The UPRN allows disparate back-office IT systems to integrate and communicate


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  • Scottish Land Information Service (ScotLIS)

    In March 2015, the Deputy First Minister announced his commitment to Scotland having an easy-to-use and affordable system for accessing a wide range of information about land and property - a one-stop digital database for land and property information services. He appointed a taskforce to look at options for this database and in October 2015 he accepted the recommendations in their report. Preparatory work for ScotLIS is now underway.


    ScotLIS stands for the Scottish Land Information Service. Via an online portal, users will be able to access information about any piece of land or property in Scotland through a single, online enquiry point. This will support smarter conveyancing, and provide better access to important information to support policy, and other decision-making, while improving accountability and transparency and creating wider social and economic benefits through innovative use of data. It will also

    improve sharing, analysis and presentation of data on Scotland’s land and property will sit within a framework that supports access to data across the public sector, complementing and interacting with other portals


    Data can be linked through the Unique Property Reference Number (UPRN) and may be accessed via a map-based view that identifies land ownership using Registers of Scotland data. Notices currently provided as part of the local authority Property Enquiry Certificate service will be available as part of the data requirements.


    ScotLIS will sit alongside other portals that currently exist, such as Canmore (provided by Historic Environment Scotland) and Scottish Environment Web (provided by a partnership of organisations with an interest in the environment) as another portal that can consume spatial information from the Improvement Service Spatial Hub.


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  • One Scotland Mapping Agreement

    The One Scotland Mapping Agreement (OSMA) came into operation in April 2009 as a single agreement through which local and central government in Scotland access Ordnance Survey mapping products. Subsequently, data from suppliers other than Ordnance Survey have been added.


    The agreement with Ordnance Survey is a crown to crown agreement, which removed the requirement for the costly procurement exercise associated with the previous agreements. 73 organisations were founding OSMA members and enjoyed open data sharing amongst each other. OSMA significantly increased the take up of spatial data products at no additional cost to organisations.


    In its first four years, OSMA was extended to over 100 member organisations and removed the previous barriers to data sharing restrictions between members. This has led to a threefold increase in the use of spatial data within the public sector.


    In 2013 a revised OSMA was signed, following on from the success of the original agreement. This is a 10 year agreement to reflect the stability and the dependence on OSMA products by all member organisations. The new agreement was intended to deliver benefits to both sides and make various efficiency savings.


    OSMA is funded by member organisations. The various sectors (Scottish Government and agencies, local government and NHS) all contribute an agreed percentage.


    Sample usage of Ordnance Survey products under the OSMA:


    • Registers of Scotland depend on OS mapping to register the 78,000 property transactions (with a value of £11Billion) last year. Every title is referenced against Ordnance Survey mapping.
    • The Scottish Neighbourhood Statistics are all based on data derived from OS products and are used to support decision making on public sector spending, including community partnerships with NHS and local government.
    • Transport Scotland relies on OS mapping for planning major infrastructure initiatives, such as the design for the dualling of the A9 from Perth to Inverness and the Queensferry crossing.
    • Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) and Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) depend on OS products for Scotland’s environment management, including statutory functions such as the Flood Prevention Act (Scotland) and INSPIRE.
    • Local government and emergency services: Local government uses OSMA products to support services such as ground maintenance (£192M), street cleansing (£192M), schools transport  (£384M), planning and development (40,000 applications pa), and roads maintenance (£650M). These are only examples but the total figure for services supported by OSMA is well over £1.5 billion.
    • Emergency services depend on OS products for all command and control applications, operational planning and crime pattern analysis as well as for data sharing with community planning partners.


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  • EU INSPIRE Directive

    INSPIRE is an EU directive which aims to establish an infrastructure for spatial information in the European Union. INSPIRE enables the sharing of environmental spatial information among public sector organisations and better facilitates public access to spatial information across Europe by defining common technical standards for publishing spatial datasets such as addresses, transport networks, land use, protected areas and risk zones. In total, over 34 data themes are defined within

    the framework.


    It comprises a framework of rules and standards to help make spatial information more accessible for a wide range of purposes that support sustainable development. The directive came into force in 15 May 2007 and was transposed into Scottish law in December 2009.


    INSPIRE promotes improvements in:


    • Joining of and access to existing spatial data across the EU at a local, regional, national and international level;
    • Sharing of spatial data between public authorities; and
    • Public access to spatial data.


    INSPIRE is based on a number of common principles:


    • Geographic data should be collected only once and kept where it can be maintained most effectively.
    • It should be possible to seamlessly combine geographic information from different sources across Europe and share it with many users and applications.
    • It should be possible for geographic information collected at one level/scale to be shared with all levels/scales; detailed for thorough investigations, general for strategic purposes.
    • Geographic data needed for good governance at all levels should be readily and transparently available.
    • Geographic data should be easy to find, and easily understood as to how it can be used to meet a particular need and under which conditions it can be acquired and used.


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Spatial Information Service

Tel. 01506 282012

Email the Spatial Hub

Email One Scotland Gazetteer