This drawing represents the relative relief of the landscape by light shading and interlining in pencil. Parallel pecked lines indicate paths across open land. Achling Ditch, a Roman road, runs diagonally across the drawing. To the left of the road is Blandford Race Ground and Telegraph. As well as being a racecourse until the end of the 19th century, Blandford was used as a military training ground by local volunteers from the 18th century onwards. In 1806, a Royal Navy Shutter Telegraph Station was built near the racecourse. The signal station, on the London to Plymouth route, was closed after the Napoleonic War. In the lower section of the map, concentric rings depict the iron-age hillfort of Badbury Rings.
This drawing covers the coastline of Swanage and Studland. Reflecting the military impetus of the Ordanance Survey, a battery and signal point are marked on opposite sides of Swanage Bay. The islands and sands around Poole are recorded in detail and the various channels marked and named. There is a network of red-ink lines around Swanage. These are probably stone walls delineating field boundaries, but could also be corrections added at a later date. On the right-hand edge of the manuscript, a note records the scale of the drawing, the date of execution and the names of the surveyors. The note is pasted on and may have been trimmed from the margins of the drawing and repositioned. A red pecked line, starting at Allam Chine on North Shore, marks the county boundary between Dorset and Hampshire. Budgen, Charles
This coastal plan is drawn to a scale of 3 inches to the mile, unlike most inland drawings, which are two inches to the mile. The larger scale reflects greater concern for the vulnerability of this area. The Solent gives access to the ports of Portsmouth and Southampton, making it a particularly attractive avenue for naval invasion. Hurst Castle is marked in black and red at the narrow entrance to the Solent. Built by Henry VIII as part of a defensive chain of fortresses, it is sited where the ebb and flow of the tides create particularly strong currents, providing an excellent natural defence against would-be invaders. The castle was modernised during the Napoleonic Wars. To the right of the castle, salt marshes extend towards Lymington. The saltworks, shown by blue squares, once supplied most of the west of England. A signal house is noted on Christchurch Head.
Berwick St. John
Small red crosses at Baverstoke, at the top centre, and Et Knoyle, at the top left,mark observation points used by the surveyor to plot topographical details and measure distances. The draughtsman has faithfully recorded the relative relief of the hills and indicated areas of woodland, using various shades of green to distinguish woods from grassland. The ancient circular earthworks of Chiselbury are marked by concentric rings on White Sheet Hill, in the centre of the drawing.
This drawing is rich in archaeological sites, the most notable being Cadbury Castle, which, according to legend, is the Camelot of Arthurian myth. It is marked by several concentric rings inside a band of dense shading, smudged at the top, indicating a steep mound. It was not until 1839-40 that contour lines were introduced into Ordnance Survey drawings, and so the two large blank areas on the map represent low fluvial tracts. Red pecked lines denote the boundaries between Dorset, Somerset and Wiltshire