Link Post Code to Government Services

Open a data set which allows the look up of the following information by post code.

  • Ward
  • Constituency
  • MP Information
  • Healthcare information
  • ...anything else?

For example, I have a site - http://voteuk.shkspr.mobi - which should be able to take a postcode and return details of your local election office to help you register to vote.

There is no central source of data which will allow me to get all the information I need.

Submitter name: 
Terence Eden

Comments

Coords

With the ubiquity of satNav devices lookup by geographic coordinates might be helpful too.

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http://mapit.mysociety.org/

http://mapit.mysociety.org/ has all these things (and a bit more) - using OS OpenData (and some NI Statistics data too for Northern Ireland postcodes)

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Great Web

Hi Pezholio, you have valuable information web there. But some people usually has postcodes in incorrect format. There is a script to correct it for written in UK format.

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Sounds like Postzon data...

From the Royal mail website: "Postzon™ data allows you to link geographic and administrative data from government bodies, such as local authorities and the NHS, for all known Postcodes in the UK.
Use it to help plan routes, calculate distances between Postcodes, allocate sales force areas, distribute resources or locate facilities."

Unfortunately, this is covered by Database Rights and is fee based from the Royal Mail...

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Doesn't the free OS product

Doesn't the free OS product Code-Point Open contain grid references for each postcode, along with local authority and NHS geographies? It doesn't have constituency. There is the usual postcode problem that they can span local authority (or NHS) boundaries, but it seems like a fair starting point to me.

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OS OpenData

The original posting pre-dates OpenData. However, Code-Point Open does indeed include a set of point coordinates for each postcode. Boundary-Line includes constituency and ward boundaries. As near as I can tell none of the OpenData products include NHS boundaries -- or policy and fire authority boundaries, which would also be useful.

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I didn't spot the opriginal

I didn't spot the opriginal posting date when I commented before!

CodePoint Open does have Regional and Local NHS Authority fields on it.

A lot more useful than knowing such and such has spent £622 on pencils so far this year (an d how much does that sort of thing cost to put together anyway?)

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OS OpenSpace boundaries example

Ordnance Survey's OpenSpace free API allows boundaries derived from Boundary-Line (TM) to be displayed on a map. In this neat example, type in your postcode and click on your property. The app will return the electoral and administrative areas for your property.

http://osopenspacewiki.ordnancesurvey.co.uk/wiki/index.php?title=Boundar...

The postcode lookups are based on Code-Point Open. You can use the code from any of the examples on the OpenSpace wiki to build your own apps.

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Ordnance Survey Linked Data

This information is now available as linked data. There are URIs for all postcodes in GB. These are of the form:

http://data.ordnancesurvey.co.uk/id/postcodeunit/{postcode}

e.g. http://data.ordnancesurvey.co.uk/id/postcodeunit/SO164GU

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Its out

Looks like The Sun featured an article today on the fact their is now a 'government' website to interrogate this data - however it doesnt work - probably overloaded and also not sure if it understands postcodes http://www.police.uk/m/ 

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Is too much transparency bad?

There has been some comment in the press regarding the increase of information put out in the public domain. It seems that the underworld is taking advantage of this 'free information' and using it to their advantage.

The most interesting of this I have heard about are the council payments to fraudsters who look up contract information online and then phone up the payments department posing to be a contractor and provide their own bank details. This has lead to many millions going astray!

With more information becoming available for individual post codes I fear this could spread to an increase of idendity theft.

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This data...

The issue with the data requirement above is that wards in many cases cross post code boundaries as the two sets aren't related. You would need a property/ward relationship.

I do agree, the data should be available publically, there's absolutely nothing about geographical information like this that should remain hidden.

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