History in Structure

Monument at South-Eastern End of General Roy's Survey Base

A Grade II Listed Building in Richmond upon Thames, London

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Latitude: 51.4265 / 51°25'35"N

Longitude: -0.3657 / 0°21'56"W

OS Eastings: 513720

OS Northings: 170985

OS Grid: TQ137709

Mapcode National: GBR 5K.VWP

Mapcode Global: VHFTS.MD1T

Plus Code: 9C3XCJGM+HP

Entry Name: Monument at South-Eastern End of General Roy's Survey Base

Listing Date: 25 May 1983

Grade: II

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1263302

English Heritage Legacy ID: 432627

ID on this website: 101263302

Location: Hampton, Richmond upon Thames, London, TW12

County: London

District: Richmond upon Thames

Electoral Ward/Division: Hampton North

Parish: Non Civil Parish

Built-Up Area: Richmond upon Thames

Traditional County: Middlesex

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Greater London

Church of England Parish: St James Hampton Hill

Church of England Diocese: London

Tagged with: Monument

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TQ 17 SW

ROY GROVE, Hampton
Monument at south-eastern end of General Roy's survey base


Cast-iron cannon monument, installed 1791 to mark the south-eastern end of the baseline measured by General Roy in 1784 across Hounslow Heath, from King's Arbour to Hampton Poor House, which is now taken to be the origin of the Ordnance Survey. Roy originally marked his line by wooden posts, but in 1791 two guns were selected at Woolwich 'from amongst those which had been condemned as unfit for the public service'. The cannon is some nine feet long, the lower six feet of which are buried in the ground. Near the cannon is a plaque which reads as follows:
'This tablet was affixed in 1926 to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the birth of Major General William Roy FRS, born 4th May 1726 - died 1st July 1790. He conceived the idea of carrying out the triangulation of this country and of constructing a complete and accurate map and thereby laid the foundation of the Ordnance Survey. This gun marks the SE terminal of the base which was measured in 1784, under the supervision of General Roy, as part of the operations for determining the relative positions of the Greenwich and Paris Observatories. This measurement was rendered possible by the munificence of HM King George III, who inspected the work on 21st August 1784. The base was measured again in 1791, by Captain Mudge, as the commencement of the principal triangulation of Great Britain. Length of base - reduced to MGL - as measured by Roy - 27404.01 feet, as measured by Mudge - 27404.24 feet, as determined by Clarke in 1858 in terms of the Ordnance Survey Standard 02 - 27406.19 feet.'
Source: Captain William Mudge and Isaac Dalby, An Account of the Operations Carried on for Accomplishing a Trigonometric Survey of England and Wales, vol. I, 1799, p.223.

The monument at the north-west end of General's Roy's baseline is listed under Northern Perimeter Road, Heathrow Airport, in the London Borough of Hillingdon.

Listing NGR: TQ1372070985

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