Ordnance Survey Discovery Series Maps, Co. Laois (Queen’s Co.)

A note on Maps – particularly Irish Ordnance Survey maps (OS maps) and this probably goes for most OS maps worldwide

We all have a mobile phone today, we all have internet connections and we all think that’s going to do us as regards a map for the area we are looking at – mobile phones are great, I’ve headed off over to Galway looking for graves with my mobile showing me how to get from A to B – and then………..then the phone went and bloomin’ died on me and there I was “lost” in Galway and sin and all as it is I had all the Galway OS maps – at *home* and what good were they to me there?

I have all the OS maps for Laois, I’ve even had a few of them a few times, meaning that I buy the map, sit on the floor going through it marking off all the graveyards, churches – I have even marked the Mottes (would I know a Motte if I was standing in front of it – not on your life!!). So, I buy the map, sit down, mark off all the places I’m interested in, get into the car and set off to where-ever. I used to work it that I’d put a circle around where-ever it was I was going to go and once I’d been there then I’d put an X over the circle. Then I used to have a yellow glow marker and I’d draw along the road I’d been so that I’d know not to go there again. Gradually, when you have a map that’s handled like I handle them they disintegrate and when they do that, then all your info on the map disappears.

These Discovery Series Ordnance Survey Maps and what they tell you.

1. Churches are marked – and ones with the word church written in yellow I think. After that you get a black cross for a functioning church.
2. Graveyards are marked – Except they don’t tell you if there is a graveyard around a church, the marking is for places where the old church has disintegrated and now we have a graveyard remaining. Sometimes, you find nothing there or little there like at Ballybuggy in Rathdowney. Some graveyards are actually just an empty field
3. ‘Burial Grounds’ are marked. Thing is for the most part when you go to a Burial ground site, then all you see is a field with nothing in it.
4. Historical sites are marked, so you have castle written where a castle or it’s remnant’s stand. Mottes like I’ve mentioned are shown, also Standing stones – anything like that.
5. Caravan sites, Hostels, Public Telephones (do we still have them??), Picnic sites, camping sites, Tourist information , Viewpoints, Nature Reserves, Guards (Policemen – wow, I thought our numbers of them were decreasing!!)
6. National Monuments, Enclosures, Battlefields

I think that’s about it.  Below these words I have imported a copy of an image of the kind of information that you see on these maps.  This is from a new map that I own which I have not yet begun to work with so I have not marked the kinds of places I am interested in. The one thing you will see on this map image is the set of black dotted lines which separate one county from another. Mountmellick in Laois is the town on the map, but above Mountmellick you can see the dotted line as we head towards Clonygowan which is in Offaly.

An extract from OS Map 54 which shows Mountmellick an the separating dotted black line which marks the two county lines for Laois & Offaly

An extract from OS Map 54 which shows Mountmellick an the separating dotted black line which marks the two county lines for Laois & Offaly

I am also importing the image of the back of one of these maps which does cover part of Co. Laois.  On this image you can see the different sections of the county that the maps cover and this will help you if you do decide to purchase one of the maps listed in the Amazon (UK) index below if you want to purchase an Ordnance Survey Discovery Series Map.

OS Map 60 showing outline of 4 OS maps for Laois: 54, 55, 60 & 61

OS Map 60 showing outline of 4 OS maps for Laois: 54, 55, 60 & 61

Links to Amazon.co.uk pages which have the Laois (Queen’s Co.) maps for sale

54Laois, Offaly & Tipperary
55Laois, Kildare, Offaly & Wicklow
61Laois, Carlow, Kildare, Kilkenny, & Wicklow
60Laois, Kilkenny & Tipperary