Google Maps neogeography Technology

Thames Valley Flood Map

A Great example of community mapping and the immediacy of tools like the My Maps feature of Google Maps is this map by Oliver Williams who is collating images, videos and reports relating to the current river floods in England.

When I looked this maps was less than a hour old !!

Flood Map

Not only is this a potentially powerful way of communicating up-to-date information quickly, it is also great at telling the human story of such events.

Written and Submitted from the Google Office, London.

5 replies on “Thames Valley Flood Map”

Ed – thanks for noticing the map. We’re trying to keep it updated around the clock with the latest flood warnings for Berkshire alongside photos, video and audio from visitors to the site and our own reporters.

Geospatial Technologist sounds like a hell of a job! May I say the Google Map is holding up remarkably well and serving exactly the purpose I had in mind – very flexible and brilliant for illustrating exactly which rivers are in trouble.

My only gripe (and I highly doubt you’re the person to tell but you never know) is that there’s a limit of 100 markers before you get a second “page” of them. Then you have to move between pages to see the markers and that’s less than ideal, so I have to keep the number below 100. But you can’t have it all, especially when it’s free!

If anyone from Google’s interesting in talking to us about how we’re using the map, give the newsroom a call during office hours, 01189 464 200 and ask for me. I’ll almost certainly be around.



Hi Oliver

I would like to chat to you a bit more about your map if possible! Could you get in touch and I can tell you a bit more – its about a google maps project
Best wishes

Ed thanks for pointing this map out and Ollie, thanks for making it. Here in Surrey Heath ICT dept I’ve just started an internal blog to promote GIS through the organisation. Using the ‘My Maps Plus’ Service I’ve been able to simply embed your flooding map into my post. Chobham village in our borough had major flooding on Friday / Saturday so this information is particularly relevent to us.


I am a lecturer at Sheffield University in the Information Studies Department. I have also been using Google Maps to visualise recent flood data mined from the web including BBC News, YouTube videos, Flickr pictures and blog data. Colleagues and myself have developed techniques to gather this data from the web, extract locations, geo-code them and map them automatically. This work is ongoing and part of an EU project called Memoir which aims to investigate the use of technology for helping support our personal memories. My aim is to develop a public website which can be used to record a community memory of the recent flooding events (mainly in South Yorkshire). For more information please contact me (see

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