Map Giveaway for Scottish Schoolkids Gets Underway

Schoolchildren across Scotland have the chance to get their hands on free Ordnance Survey maps, as the national mapping agency launches the Free maps for 11-year-olds scheme today (Tuesday 18 August).

The initiative offers every Primary 7 pupil in Scotland a free OS Explorer Map and has been an overwhelming success since its launch in 2002, with the 5 millionth map given away last year.

The scheme not only supports learning about geography and the environment but also helps encourage children and their families to get out and about and explore their local area. It has been praised by teachers, pupils and parents alike.

“Being able to understand the information on a map, whether it’s on paper, the Internet or a hand-held gadget, and relate that to the world you see around you is a really important life skill,” comments Elaine Owen, Ordnance Survey’s Corporate Responsibility Manager.

“The Free maps for 11-year-olds scheme is helping children learn these skills and is open to every Primary 7 pupil in Scotland. All your school has to do is place their order on our website.”

As well as a free OS Explorer Map, pupils are also being given the chance to win an all-expenses paid day out with the Field Studies Council in Exmoor National Park. The 12 winners that can correctly complete the answers to five questions will have the chance to put their map-reading skills into practice and enjoy the many activities planned for the day. 

To take advantage of the scheme, teachers must place their order by 30 November 2009 on the Ordnance Survey free maps website:

Further support for teachers is also available on Ordnance Survey’s MapZone website – – which offers a range of educational games. There is also the online explore portal, which allows users to plot, share and search for routes on Ordnance Survey mapping. Teachers are using the site, which is free to access, to highlight different map symbols to their pupils. Visit explore at

For more information call the free maps helpline on 0845 337 3133 or email