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Post Hoc — Analysing UK OSM Postbox Data

OpenStreetMap records the location of postboxes using the amenity=post_box tag. The Post Hoc tool provides statistics, reports and maps to compare the data in OpenStreetMap with data from Royal Mail. The Royal Mail Post Box data comes an FOI request. For further information, please see the Technical Details page.

Summary Statistics

Source Boxes Percent Updated
Royal Mail list 115485   2013‑11‑11
OSM 74009 64.1% 2020‑11‑21
OSM (matched refs) 59461 51.5% 2020‑11‑21

View history graphs.

Progress Maps and Comparison Reports

OSM Post Box Progress
View the progress of mapping all post boxes by postal area and then district. At district level a map shows a comparison between official location data from Royal Mail and current OSM data. Discrepencies are highlighted for ground surveys. Note that the official locations are © Royal Mail, and we do not have permission to use them in OSM.
OSM Reference Issues
Results of various checks on the values in 'ref' fields of post box nodes on OpenStreetMap.
OSM Collection Times Issues
Postboxes with possible errors in the collection_times key.
OSM Royal Cypher Issues
Postboxes with possible errors in the royal_cypher key.
OSM Box Type Report
Report on usage of tags to describe box types.
OSM Operator Report
Report on usage of tags to describe the operator of the box.
OSM Tag Keys Report
List of all keys used on post box nodes, ordered by number of occurrences.
OSM Tag Lists
Various reports listing postboxes with specific tags defined:

Post Box League Tables

Top postal districts and users by updates to post box nodes in last 7 days.

# District Updates
1. KT10 15
2. BN16 9
3. SP1 8
4. NG11 7
5. BN1 5
6. FK2 5
7. GL51 5
# Username Updates %Ref'd
1. manof25 20 100%
2. JodaStephen 15 100%
3. robbieonsea 12 92%
4. challengefinallyferry 7 100%
5. Yorvik Prestigitator 6 17%
6. Hobgoblin 6 100%
7. InsertUser 5 100%

Top postal districts and users by updates to post box nodes in last 28 days.

# District Updates
1. TA4 60
2. TA2 55
3. PO30 55
4. TA3 43
5. PO33 33
6. TA1 32
7. PO38 31
8. PO36 30
9. PO31 25
10. L7 22
11. L9 22
12. BN1 21
13. KT10 17
14. SG4 17
# Username Updates %Ref'd
1. UKChris 273 84%
2. CjMalone 220 100%
3. DanGlover 111 100%
4. Phil Nash 68 100%
5. robbieonsea 67 99%
6. manof25 59 100%
7. Yorvik Prestigitator 58 74%
8. JodaStephen 51 98%
9. Jez Nicholson 33 100%
10. jtn20 18 100%
11. Dave McCormick 16 94%
12. H5imo 16 0%
13. Mikhail1412 14 79%
14. Tony Henllan 11 100%

Copyright Warning: There is no permission from Royal Mail to use the box locations and reference numbers in their data in OpenStreetMap. So the data may not be used directly. However, you may find the comparisons helpful in suggesting places you would like to survey in the hope of finding missing post boxes to add.

Data derived from OpenStreetMap data, © OpenStreetMap Contributors, licensed under Open Data Commons Open Database License (ODbL). XAPI courtesy of Overpass API.