[Tagging] Route names that aren’t names

Dave F davefoxfac63 at btinternet.com
Sun Mar 29 17:32:21 UTC 2020

A general point to all:
Please don't confuse a way's name with a route's name. They are 
different. There can be multiple routes traversing over the same way.

On 28/03/2020 21:56, Richard Fairhurst wrote:
> Sure. NCN 4 is called "NCN 4" in the same sense that the M4 is called the
> "M4". That's fine - plenty of people refer to it that way. But OSM
> convention, dating back 15ish years, is that in situations like this, you
> put the number in the ref alone. The M4 just has ref=M4, not name=M4.

However the authority responsible for naming conventions of entities, 
such roads or routes (ie Highways England/Sustrans/Whoever), wishes to 
name them, then that is how they should be tagged in OSM. Even if it  
includes what OSM perceives as a reference. OSM contributors don't have 
the authority to usurp that. The 'OSM convention' you mention is 
irrelevant - we map 'ground truth'.

If  HE wanted to name a section of the M4 'The bit of the M4 between 
junctions 14 & 15' then that's what it would be.

There's a similar situation in Britain where some think creating an OSM 
specific referencing system for public rights of way is the best 
situation. However inventing, what is in effect a unique language, makes 
it very difficult to communicate efficiently about the paths.

> There are of course plenty of NCN routes which do have names. NCN 8 is Lon
> Las Cymru. NCN 68 is the Pennine Cycleway. NCN 4 west of the Severn Bridge
> is the Celtic Trail. NCN 1 from Newcastle to Edinburgh is Coast & Castles.

The Celtic Trail isn't the name of NCN 4. it's another route which 
happens to coincide (mostly) with a couple of NCN routes. From Sustran's 
blurb "The Celtic Trail is made up of two routes - NCN 4 & NCN 47".

The rest are similar, I believe.

> (It's a side-issue, but Sustrans doesn't really have a consistent way of
> referring to route numbers: you'll hear Sustrans staff refer to "Route 5" or
> "NCN 5" or "National Cycle Network Route 5" or "National Route 5". I was at
> a video conference with Sustrans staff earlier this week and heard several
> variations. :) ).

Go with publications not chitter chatter over the phone.


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