[Talk-GB] Tagging post towns and other addressing issues in the UK

Colin Smale colin.smale at xs4all.nl
Mon Jan 28 12:36:24 UTC 2019

Hi Will, 

On 2019-01-28 13:19, Will Phillips wrote:

> Hi,
> I agree we need another tag below addr:city for localities. For this I have usually used addr:suburb when mapping in urban areas and addr:locality elsewhere. Ideally I think it would be best to have just one recommended tag, perhaps addr:locality, because having addr:town addr:village and addr:suburb seems too complicated. Eventually it would be good if editing software, in particular iD, could provide an extra field to enter the locality, and it would perhaps be easier for that to happen if there was only one tag. New mappers often seem to have difficulty entering addresses to the form that they wish and I think the lack of a locality field is part of the reason. 
> For what Royal Mail calls 'Double Dependent Localities' using addr:sublocality is a possibility, although I wonder whether just sticking with addr:village for this less common situation would be easier. It depends a bit on whether this tag is only likely to be used for villages and hamlets, or whether it might be useful in other cases. For example, sometimes names of industrial estates appear in addresses in a similar way to sublocalities.

I don't see any advantage in "addr:village" and "addr:suburb" just
because they sound familiar or are existing tags. What we are discussing
here is a UK-specific solution. The (Double) Dependent Localities may or
may not correspond to what people perceive as a "village" or "suburb".
In the quoted example, "Cambridge Science Park" is IMHO neither. 

> I only use addr:city for post towns, although I recognise not all mappers agree with this, and I appreciate there are arguments both ways. I was thinking about this recently when adding addresses in Lees near Derby. The post town is Ashbourne, but this seems slightly incongruous because the village is much nearer to Derby. I chose not to include addr:city and only used addr:locality for the village name.

> I feel the main argument in favour of using post towns for addr:city is that it helps to keep the data consistent because what to use often becomes confusing otherwise. To use the example of Lees I mentioned above, it would be easy to end up with a situation where addr:city contained perhaps four values if the data was entered by different people without any guide as to what to use (the most likely possibilities being Lees, Dalby Lees, Derby or Ashbourne).

> In cases where local residents consider Royal Mail's choice of post town to be contentious, usually because it is miles from where they live, it might be sensible to recognise addr:posttown as an alternative.

The accepted paradigm is that the address should represent the postal
address, and not any administrative relationships. As you will know RM
have their own particular ideas of the geography of the UK, all done for
their own convenience. It would certainly avoid some confusion if we
used addr:posttown instead of addr:city.

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