Why Bexhill lost being ‘On-Sea’ on recent Ordnance Survey maps

Bexhill on Sea sign SUS-190823-102803001
Bexhill on Sea sign SUS-190823-102803001

From: Thomas Duncan-Williams, Horsham, West Sussex

I was brought up in the town and had a pleasant childhood here. Now I no longer live here but proud of my town, and rightly so.

I had noticed on many recent Ordnance Survey maps they were missing out two very important words for this lovely place – namely omitting the ‘ON-SEA’ which to me is almost an insult. It IS on the sea – I should know, so I am letting you know I contacted them and this what I said followed by their response:

“Why are you missing out the ‘-on-Sea’ when printing maps of East Sussex and BEXHILL?

“To my knowledge it was always called BEXHILL-ON-SEA, at least when I lived there, and was shown on maps with the full name.

“It seems bad you are removing its nice title. It IS on the sea – I went to its shore enough times to validate this (have YOU been there?) and it is sad you seem fit to remove those hyphens and two small words.

“Are you intending to shorten other place names - e.g. Burton-on-Trent, Shipston-on-Stour? Remove their river names? I am sure they would not be happy if you did that. If not, PLEASE start using the full name for a pleasant small town on the South Coast!”

Further to my email below, I have had a response from the technical team.

“We have amended the name on our basic scale data. However it may take a little while to reach our other scales of mapping.

“Thank you for taking the time and trouble to bring this issue to our attention. We appreciate all feedback from our customers, especially that which enables us to improve the accuracy of our mapping.

“Kind regards, Lesley Flood, Customer Service Adviser, Customer Services”

I now live in West Sussex – in a place inland so definitely not on or by the sea but thought you might like to know that as a past resident, I wanted the town to be given its true full identity on maps, as I am happy to have resided there for a good few years.

You may like to print this letter to your readers to let them know that with luck they may see the town printed with its proper title in the not-too-distant future.