Old Hampshire Mapped

Ogilby Routes

routes John Ogilby made the first serious maps of roads through Hampshire, in his book of strip maps for England and Wales, Britannia , published in 1675.

The route diagrams presented here aim to show for how long the Ogilby Routes stayed important, emphasising them by greying out the other routes. The diagrams show the roads found on some of the county maps of Hampshire; others are constructed from road strip maps, or extracted from general maps of England.

The diagrams are drawn in two sizes: the smaller is shown first with limited place names to orientate you within the county; the larger version shows a greater selection of the places through which the emphasised routes pass. It is necessary to bear in mind the difference between a route, which goes from one place to another somehow, and the actual road used on the journey. The larger diagrams also show the further destinations where these are known to match Ogilby's.

accuracy A dotted line has been used on our route diagrams where we think the map maker has intended to follow Ogilby's road but has not in fact done so. This occurs quite often despite the fact that Ogilby's roads were shown very accurately on the strip maps. It is most noticeable on the county maps, where map makers had to combine information from the strip maps with less accurate data already in the more usual map form. Or perhaps some makers copied Ogilby's general map, which did not carry enough detailed information to show the correct roads on a county scale map.

John Ogilby's choice of routes must have reflected what was considered important at that time. Was it a good choice? He starts with the direct routes from London and their dependants, and continues with cross roads and accidentals: it is certain that some were included or left out of the last two categories to make the exact number of 100 plates. Ogilby's perspective was countrywide and may well have been concentrated on long distance routes, particularly those from London, or those serving ports. In particular they included, in Hampshire:-
  • from London, through Staines, Bagshot, Hartford Bridge, Basingstoke, Andover, Salisbury, to the West Country coast and Lands End. ... The Post-Office making this one of their Principal Roads ...
  • from London through Guildford, Liphook, Petersfield, to Portsmouth.
  • from London, leaving the Land's End road at Bagshot, through Farnham, Alton and Twyford, to Southampton.
Short town to town roads were rarely included unless they were part of a longer route. Routes omitted by Ogilby, but shown by Lea and Morden soon after, include:-
  • from Salisbury to Winchester via Stockbridge, on the general map from the 1690s.
  • from Winchester towards Bishops Waltham, shown on the playing cards of 1676.
  • from Southampton to Lymington via Hythe Ferry.
John Ogilby travelled by horse; he describes the varying state of the roads he travelled. He does not indicate what factors determined his precise choice of road, whether it was predetermined or decided en route, and if he used local advice.

John Ogilby's survey of 1675 provided map makers with detailed information on a selection of major routes in Hampshire. Most of the roads shown on county maps up to the 1750s are Ogilby routes; this may be because they were indeed the most important roads, or more likely because the map makers often cribbed from existing sources rather than making new surveys or choices. They sometimes acknowledged their copying. The road books of Bowen and Senex follow Ogilby's roads exactly. Even as late as 1788, Harrison's map shows, just south of Overton, Thetherton , which is an error on Ogilby's strip map. The place is called Setherton in Ogilby's text; it is almost certainly Southington.

Towards the end of the 18th century, when county surveying had improved, Ogilby's routes appear in their proper perspective, as elements of a local network. It is possible that by selecting certain roads and mapping them, John Ogilby had encouraged travellers to use them, reinforcing their status as accepted routes. Whatever the reason, many of Ogilby's roads, with only minor changes, continued to be important and are to be found in later maps.

It is possible to trace the Ogilby routes on modern maps (1997); the summary presented below gives the approximate route within Hampshire, related to modern roads where possible.

plates 25, 26 Bagshot, through Basingstoke and Andover, towards Salisbury
...in general a very good Road with suitable Entertainment.
1675-1825 This major east-west road across the north of the county, passes through Basingstoke and Andover. It changed little, in Hampshire, during the period to 1825. From the 1750s the main route continues to Lands End, beyond Salisbury, through Dorchester; earlier the way went via Sherborn.
1965,1997 To the east of Basingstoke, this route is the A30; by 1997 the M3 is running parallel. Between Basingstoke and Andover, Ogilby's road is mostly the B3400, the main road now following a more southerly route. West of Andover, Ogilby's route follows the A343 towards Salisbury, whilst the modern trunk route to the South West takes a route further north through Amesbury.

plate 30 through Petersfield to Portsmouth
A good Sandy Way, well frequented and accommodated.
1675-1825 This was a very important route at least from 1675 onwards, and it is shown on all the maps studied. It ends at Portchester or at Portsea on Morden's earliest maps.
1965,1997 The road follows the A3 to Portsea Island. By 1997 the section between Liphook and Petersfield has become the B2070.

plate 32 Andover towards Amesbury
... in general a good Way ...
1675-1825 The road shown by Ogilby follows the Portway out of Andover to Quarley Hill before turning east. It ceases to be a major road in the 1750s when an alternative to Amesbury via Weyhill is established.
1965,1997 Now mostly minor roads.

plate 39 through Petersfield to Winchester
1675-1825 This is a branch off the London to Chichester road at Midhurst, and is not shown between Petersfield and Winchester on Ogilby's general map. He describes it as more unpleasant , and Milne, 1792, marks it as a bad road . A route via Ropley Dean becomes the preferred route around 1800. Wheeler's Magazine of 1828 describes a proposal, made in Vancouver's Hants Survey, for a turnpike road following much of the old route.
1965,1997 The A272 now follows this route through Petersfield to Cheriton. The route then follows tracks; and then the A31. By 1997 the road into Winchester.has become the B3404.

plate 51 Bagshot through Farnham and Alton to Southampton;
Southampton through Romsey towards Salisbury
A very good Road to Southampton, and thence to Salisbury indifferent.
1675-1825 This remains the usual route to Southampton until about 1800. After this date a different road between Alton and New Alresford is shown, through Ropley Dean. And instead of continuing to Southampton via Twyford, the route goes via Winchester.
The road from Southampton to Romsey is usually shown, but sometimes as a minor route.
1965,1997 This is roughly the A325 to Farnham, then the A31 to Alton. Then it follows tracks and minor roads to New Alresford where the A31 is rejoined. Then it goes by track and minor road to Twyford. In 1965 the road is briefly the A333, then the A335 to Southampton. In 1997, it is the B3335, becoming the A335 after crossing the Itchen.
From Southampton to Romsey the way is mostly the A3057; then the A27 towards Salisbury.

plate 53 Basingstoke through Stockbridge
... for the most part a good and well-beaten Road.
1675-1825 The Basingstoke to Stockbridge road is frequently shown, though it does not appear on several Morden maps. Beyond Stockbridge, some maps show a route to Salisbury, instead of Ogilby's route which is towards Downton.
1965,1997 In 1965, the route is roughly the A30 from Basingstoke to Stockbridge. In 1997, it is the A30 then the A303 to Popham Beacons, then a minor road to Sutton Scotney where the route rejoins the A30. From Stockbridge it goes south-west on minor roads and tracks.

plate 81 from Newbury through Kingsclere, Basingstoke, Alton and Petersfield, towards Chichester
The Road is for the most part indifferent good, and every where furnish'd with convenient Inns, &c.
1675-1825 The route through Kingsclere and Basingstoke to Alton is included on some but not all maps as a major road. From the 1750s the road south of Herriard is usually shown re-routed west of Lasham. The road from Alton through Petersfield changes little.
1965,1997 The A339 into Basingstoke, then cross country, rejoining the A339 briefly, but entering Alton on a minor road from the north. Out through Chawton and along the A32, turning off on a minor road over the Barnet to Petersfield; then tracks, eventually joining the B2146 towards Chichester.

plate 83 through North Tidworth towards Salisbury
1675-1825 The section of the route from Oxford to Poole through Hampshire is described by Ogilby as indifferent . It does not appear on all maps, in particular when an alternative route from Oxford to Salisbury is provided by the Newbury-Andover road.
1965,1997 The old route briefly follows the A338 at North Tidworth, but is otherwise cross-country.

plate 97 from New Alresford, through Winchester, Romsey, Ringwood towards Poole;
from Poole through Christchurch to Lymington;
from Southampton to Winchester
... affording in most Parts a good Road, and fitting Entertainment for Travellers.
1675-1825 The route from Winchester to Poole can be found on most maps of the period. Some map makers show a direct route between New Alresford and Winchester, instead of using segments of routes 51 and 39.
The road from Christchurch to Lymington is usually shown, but sometimes as a minor road.
On early maps, the line of the road from Southampton to Otterborne on the way to Winchester is often confused with the route to Alresford through Twyford which keeps closer to the river Itchen.
From the 1750s the segments from New Alresford to Winchester and Winchester to Southampton together become part of the preferred London to Southampton route.
1965,1997 In 1965 the route from New Alresford to Romsey was the A31. In 1997, it is the B3047 west from Alresford to join the A31; then the B3404 through Winchester, joining the A3090 through Romsey. West of Romsey the route follows the A31 approximately, passing Picket Post then on through Ringwood. At the present county boundary take the A348 to Longham Bridge.
Leave Poole on the A35, at Christchurch join the A337 to Lymington. In 1997 there is a minor road through Christchurch town centre, then the B3059 before the A337
In 1965 the route from Southampton to Winchester is the A33. In 1997 from Southampton start on the A33, then take minor roads with a small section on the B3404, in the same direction as the M3; then follow the B3335 into Winchester.

References : 1828 (January): Plan shewing the New Road from Winchester to Petersfield: Wheeler's Hampshire and West of England Magazine (Charles H Wheeler, High Street, Winchester, Hampshire): 1(1)

Box, E G: 1932-1934: Hampshire in Early Maps and Early Road-Books: ProcHCF: 12: pp.221-235

Box, E G: 1935-1937: Hampshire in Early Maps and Early Road-Books-II: ProcHCF: 13: pp.61-68

Brayshay, Mark: 1992: Royal Post-Horse Routes of Hampshire in the Reign of Elizabeth I, The: ProcHCF: 48: pp.121-134

James, Alan: 1970: Post, The: Batsford (London):: ISBN 0 7134 1764 1

MacEachren, A M & Johnson, G B: 1987 (December): Evolution, Application and Implications of Strip Format Travel Maps, The: Cartographic Journal: 24: pp.147-158

Maxwell, William H: 1899: Construction of Roads and Streets, The: St Brides Press (London)

Smith, D: 1989 (June): Strip Format Travel Maps: Cartographic Journal: 26: pp.39-41

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Old Hampshire Mapped

Martin and Jean Norgate: 2003
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