Jenny Conroy


Three Newcastle Maps: On Cartography & Cultural Context

I chose to take inspiration from my local surroundings for my MArch dissertation and used it as an opportunity to explore key changes in the built environment which had occurred within Newcastle over the last two centuries. I closely examined three historic maps of Newcastle which captured some of these changes:

  • Charles Hutton’s 1772 Plan of Newcastle upon Tyne and Gateshead;
  • John Christie’s 1870 New Plan of Newcastle Upon Tyne and Gateshead; and
  • the 1976 Ordnance Survey 1:50 000 map of Tyneside, Sheet 88.

I noted that these maps (as with any map) also reflect the cultures in which they were created. Consequently, in charting physical change, the cartographers also recorded cultural shifts over the same time period. Reading the maps’ contexts, cartographic modes and presentation from a contemporary perspective allowed several cultural and cartographic trajectories to surface.