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Guy Messenger's collection of Ordnance Survey map series maps

Reference Code: GBR/3296/Maps/Maps.KGM

Scope and Contents

The maps were mostly listed by Roger Hellyer in 1999/2000 and 2004. This listing was copied into Cambridge University Library's Archive catalogue in early 2019 at which point some maps (e.g. Popular edition one-inch maps of Scotland) which had not previously been listed were added, and subsequently further items have been listed. The KGM numbers (Maps KGM 4.10 ; Maps KGM 5.1, etc.) are derived from the series and map type numbers in Roger Hellyer's "Ordnance Survey small-scale maps : Indexes 1801-1998", published by David Archer in 1999. The number after the colon (:) is usually the sheet number ; the number after a forward slash (/) indicates the copy number (there may just be 1 copy or there may be more). Many of the maps have been backed on linen by Guy Messenger and/or have home-made covers. Many also have home-made slip cases of various sizes, made out of cardboard (sometimes recycled corn-flake cereal boxes) and tape or sticky-back plastic, or were stored in 'Grape Nut' cereal boxes (sometimes covered ; "Grape Nuts, crunchy wheat & malted barley breakfast cereal. Stays crunchy in milk") but only samples have been retained. Some other maps belonging to Guy Messenger have been added to the Map Department collections and are catalogued in the Library's online catalogue. Where Guy's non-series / non-Ordnance Survey maps duplicated CUL's holdings, the maps were not retained. A blog post about the project to list and re-box the collection can be found at Documents created and curated by Guy Messenger can be found as part of the Charles Close Society Archives at CCSA_KGM.


  • Creation: 1824 - 1991

Conditions Governing Access

This item or collection is available for consultation by researchers in the Map Room at Cambridge University Library. Contact details and Map Room opening hours can be found at Anyone wishing to use the collection must first acquire a Cambridge University Library reader's ticket, see

Biographical / Historical

Guy Messenger (1920-1993) lived at Uppingham in Rutland, teaching biology at Uppingham School until his retirement in 1980. He remained an active botanist until his death, publishing a monograph on the flora of Rutland in 1971 and several contributions to Watsonia, the scientific journal of the Botanical Society of the British Isles. He was an early member of the Charles Close Society (CCS), joining in 1981, and quickly turned the analytical and classification skills he had acquired as a botanist to his new passion of cartobibliography. He was the author of the first full length monograph on a twentieth century map series, the Ordnance Survey one-inch map of England and Wales Third Edition (Large Sheet Series), which the CCS published in 1988. The maps were bequeathed to Cambridge University Library in Guy's will dated 4 February 1992. This information was conveyed to Cambridge University Library in a letter from Guy's solicitors in December 1993 and the maps were received in the Library on 26 January 1994.


1 collection : Paper

Language of Materials



Kenneth Guy Messenger

2019-01-28 16:38:55+00:00
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Cambridge University Library Repository

Cambridge University Library
West Road
Cambridge CB3 9DR United Kingdom