Another article from Nicholas Crane based on his BBC series, “The Map Man” — this time in the Telegraph. This one’s about the Ordnance Survey’s triangulation pillars, the use of which in surveys eventually resulted in a series of one-inch-scale maps.
There are few sights more stirring to a map enthusiast than the tapered outline of a triangulation pillar emerging from the mist of a bleak mountain. There are, or were, 6,173 of these mute beacons — each hand-cast in concrete, 4 feet high and 2 feet square at its base — scattered the length and breadth of
Erected during one of the most extraordinary episodes in the history of the Ordnance Survey, these trapezial monuments gave rise to the maps that opened the door to the British countryside.