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Post Hoc — Analysing UK OSM Postbox and Post Office Data

OpenStreetMap records the location of postboxes and Post Offices using the tags amenity=post_box and amenity=post_office respectively. The Post Hoc tool provides statistics, reports and maps to compare the data in OpenStreetMap with data from Royal Mail and from Matthew Somerville's former 'Locating Postboxes' webapp. The Royal Mail Post Box data comes an FOI request. The post box list originally came from the list of Post Office locations compiled by Edward Betts from Royal Mail's Post Office Branch Finder. For further information, please see the Technical Details page.

Postbox Summary Statistics

Source Boxes Percent Updated
Royal Mail list 115485   2013‑11‑11
OSM 57226 49.6% 2016‑05‑23
OSM (matched refs) 40357 34.9% 2016‑05‑23
Dracos 62935 54.5% 2016‑04‑09

Post Office Summary Statistics

Source Branches Percent Updated
Post Office List 11721   -
OSM 8404 71.7% 2016‑05‑20
OSM (matched) 7511 64.1% 2016‑05‑20

New: View history graphs.

Local maps showing potential issues to survey

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.
Local Post Box Comparison
Enter a postal district (first half of a postcode) in the box below to view a comparison between an official Post Box list and the current OSM data. Discrepencies are highlighted for ground surveys, and a GPX file can be exported. Note that the official locations are © Royal Mail, and we do not have permission to use them in OSM.
Postal district:
Local Post Office Comparison
Enter a postal district (first half of a postcode) in the box below to view a comparison between an official Post Office list and the current OSM data. Discrepencies are highlighted for ground surveys, and a GPX file can be exported. Note that the official locations are © Post Office, and we do not have permission to use them in OSM.
Postal district:

General Postbox Reports

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:
Too Far Apart
List of box references found in both OSM and Dracos data, with positions that differ by a significant amount.

General Post Office Reports

OSM Post Office Suspicious Names Report
Lists nodes and ways tagged with amenity=post_office, with a name=* tag that indicates they might not be a Post Office after all.
OSM Post Office Opening Hours Issues
Lists nodes and ways tagged with amenity=post_office, with a non-standard opening_hours=* tag.
OSM Post Office Tag Keys Report
List of all keys used on post box nodes, ordered by number of occurrences.
OSM Tag Lists
Various reports listing Post Offices 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. SA18 20
2. GU34 12
3. ME20 10
4. GU46 9
5. TA2 9
6. IP21 8
7. NG13 8
# Username Updates %Ref'd
1. Hillblagger 31 84%
2. manof25 30 93%
3. paulbiv 21 100%
4. Pink Duck 19 5%
5. Skidle 17 94%
6. Yorvik Prestigitator 15 33%
7. Robert Whittaker 13 85%

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

# District Updates
1. SA18 88
2. MK44 65
3. WF17 60
4. WF8 43
5. WF9 41
6. PO30 36
7. PO33 35
8. NR21 33
9. NE48 33
10. PO36 32
11. WF14 32
12. SA14 27
13. DL16 21
14. NG13 21
# Username Updates %Ref'd
1. manof25 227 99%
2. JonS 176 100%
3. shirokazan 160 76%
4. Hillblagger 138 96%
5. Skidle 103 98%
6. Pink Duck 73 51%
7. Robert Whittaker 55 95%
8. paulbiv 52 100%
9. Yorvik Prestigitator 39 31%
10. robbieonsea 33 97%
11. will_p 31 100%
12. Hobgoblin 24 100%
13. fitzsimons 24 100%
14. SK53 23 87%

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