Using the site
On opening the webpage you are presented with a map of Ypres which can be dragged and zoomed with the mouse wheel, as can all the maps on the site. When that is done, the metadata for the map will appear in the left panel along with a notification of the number of alternate maps for that location. When moving around the front, maps will automatically appear as the movement is detected. If a map does not appear as expected, try zooming in a little.
Operations on a selected map
- On the top left of the map is a small Control Box icon. On opening
that you are presented with the choice of background map and a selection
of map overlays. The map overlay list is likely to change and expand as
the project progresses.
- With a background map selected, you can use the Opacity Slider
on the top right of the map to view the modern map underneath..
Right clicking on a point will display a menu of possible operations.
Zoom to make some map scales visible
- The distance and bearing between two points can be found by clicking the icon . Clicking on the map will activate the measurement. Pressing Escape will stop it.
- Clicking on the
Layers icon allows the user to change the background modern map or
aerial images. It also toggles useful additional information to allow easier
navigation around the maps. Note, this list will change as the project progresses.
- The input box just above Great War to Modern Map allows the entry
of a full trench map reference including the sheet number. Partial
map references cannot be resolved:- to understand the difference, please
see the help page on reading a trench
map or the map reference section in the page on Family
History. Once the point is selected, the map will centre on that point
and allow Street View at the point (if within 200 metre limits). This Street
View can be followed with the white on-screen icons and it is possible to
visit tunnels and the interior of large buildings as well is simply viewing
As an example, search for Ypres under Modern Streetscape and choose Ypres (Ieper), Sint-Maartenskathedral 28.I.8.a.08.00. This places the view inside the cathedral.
In a similar way you can visit inside one of the tunnels at Vimy. To do this, use the input box above Great War to Modern Map to visit map reference 36C.S.22.c.18.18. When the map has centered on that reference, right click and choose Street View here. Pan round until you see the preserved trench entrance to the tunnels. Use the white on screen arrows to proceed underground.
- The date and other data are shown under the Trench Map list. This has been collected directly from the map marginalia but these margins have been cropped off to allow a continuous non-overlapping presentation. The full uncropped maps are available via the Add to Cart option. This map data is not always complete, various items of information are often missing from the map itself. In some cases this information has been assumed but this assumed data is always in [square brackets], for example, if the data shows the year 1915 then that was on the map, if it shows  this has been assumed and does not therefore constitute primary evidence. It is very important to note the problem with dates, please see the map dates page.
|| You can centre the map on a clicked point.
Choosing Street View will display a street level pannable view of that place or even a view from inside or on top of significant buildings. If the clicked point is within 200 metres from a road the system presents the best possible view near your chosen point. Once displayed the Street View window compass icon can be used to pan the view left or right and the screen size icons used to make it full screen or return to default size.
Screen expand/contract icons. Screen compass icon.
Add Marker allows you to add a temporary marker. A marker can be dragged to a new location which will update its coordinates; if Steet View is active, clicking the Street View button in the left panel will update the view or if not open, will open the Street View window at that new point.. These markers are not saved for the next visit, they can be hidden using the Layers icon, deleted by using the Delete icon on the marker's information box or by double clicking. Markers that result from a search cannot be moved but can be deleted.
Maps at Centre refreshes the map list shown in the bottom of the left panel. Using the drop down box, you can choose which map to display.
What's Here? will show the information about the point including WGS84 coordinates, street address and trench map reference.
What's at Centre? shows the WGS84 coordinates of the map centre and British sheet number.
Example output for the opening map of Ypres.
Zoom in, Zoom out also works with the mouse wheel. Zoom is limited for those who are not members of the WFA.
The main theatres of operation available are the Western Front, Home (UK) and Gallipoli. Please be aware that the quality of the map fit to modern maps for most of the Gallipoli maps is not as good as for the Western Front. See page on map survey accuracy.
When viewing the Gallipoli peninsula there is a complete set of 1:5,000 Post Evacuation maps. You may have to zoom a little to make the system display each one as you pan.
Map Catalogue is a link to a downloadable .PDF of the complete set of maps in the collection as a .PDF file. It is very important to note that the information in this list is what is visible on the map only, there has been no additional information added from other sources. Currently just a subset of the maps in the list are available georeferenced here, this number will grow as the project develops. Some maps will not be georeferenced for legal or contractual reasons and some items in the list are not maps. Also see the page about the project.
Lat/Lon jump allows a user to input the latitude and longitude coordinates of a point. These must be WGS84 coordinates.
Map ID Jump enables you to input the map or photo identification. Most IDs (or filename) are in the form of one or two letters, an underscore and usually a 6 digit number although some have longer names. The example here is m_010599, the opening map. You can find out the ID by using My Device from the menu.
Add to Cart will allow the purchase of maps for download. These will be the uncropped versions complete with margins of the high resolution scans in the collection. WFA members get a number of free downloads per month.
Review Cart and Checkout Cart will provide for the completion of the purchase.
Track Location links to the GPS position of your position tracking is allowed on your machine.
My Device gives a banner with information on the current map sheet, its item ID and the number of georeferenced maps currently available. This number will increase as the project develops.
By default this searches by map title not place name but you can use the drop down box to search by scale, sheet, title, edition date and file name (map ID). If you click Find Maps you are presented with the current list of hundreds of maps on the site. As the project progresses, this list will expand. To see a chosen map, click the pushpin icon on the left of the line. Please note, many Great War maps have no meaningful title so care is required when selecting maps.
Once a map is shown, in the left panel will be the number of other maps found for that place shown in a red circle. A dropdown box of these other maps allows a selection by date and other details. The data of each map, the metadata, will then be displayed under the dropdown box.
Gazetteer allows a search in several databases and lists trench names, camps, redoubts etc., Users are encouraged to try different spellings. Note that trench names are not always unique across the battlefront so the real location of a trench or other feature can only be assured if its location can be cross checked against nearby villages or towns.
All maps allows a seach of the maps in the whole collection, not all are yet georeferenced.
Georeferenced maps refers to the hundreds of maps georeferenced on the site.
Modern Places is a database of places with their respective trench map reference set up as a string search, i.e. searching for Lens will present a list of places with Lens within the name
Help v 2.1