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Bulk Excel Conversions of Trench Maps to Lat Lon & Google Maps Navigation

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Touring the Western Front with Trench Map Locations converted by Excel for navigation via Google Maps


On a recent trip to France I was pleasantly surprised by how prevalent internet coverage was and how easy it was to buy a SIM that gave data coverage in multiple countries.  We used Three and the same SIM card gave us coverage in Ireland, France and England.


In France I wanted to visit a few particular locations and used the data SIM to seamlessly navigate to the spot via Google Maps driving directions.  It worked just as I hoped and by converting British Trench Map references to a latitude and longitude, I could copy and paste the lat & lon into Google Maps.  With a right click, I used the voice navigation, driving the highways until walking the final part.  On my best effort, near Bouchavesnes, I was delighted to find a badly overgrown trench remnant with the trench line still a metre deep and the communications trench intersecting the now impassable line, still recognisable even after 100 years.


The same Excel spreadsheet has been tested, enhanced and is now available for anyone to use, free of charge.  Simply visit http://www.tmapper.com and download tMapperLite:




As always, when downloading files, ensure you have antivirus protection.  It has been tested by a number of forum pals.  When your download has completed, open the Excel file and ensure you enable macros, or it will not run.



Simplest way to get started is to run the conversion on the supplied data, by clicking 'Convert to Lat Lon'.  Then when you have confidence in the product, clear the results, delete the test data and type or paste in your own references and even select your own delimiter:




tMapperLite will convert up to 510 trench map references into a modern latitude and longitude.  It will display the results ready for you to read the lat & lon, or more importantly, to follow any hyperlink to Google Maps for modern display and voice navigation, to tmapper.com for multi-conversion and to the National Library of Scotland, for their brilliant series of overlayed WW1 trench maps on a modern map.  Not to mention McMaster University to see all trench maps they have for that sheet.




Each location should be within a 25 square yard grid for a reference in the format such as 36c.A.12.d.85.74.  When done, the Clear button will remove all results and the Help button will give you a summary.  The Directions and Case Study Excel tabs provide additional guidance, hints, tips and errors and warnings.


For many, battlefield navigation will be the intended use.  Follow the Google Maps hyperlink, right click on the map pin and nominate the location where you want to start.  You can even do this the night before and save the directions offline, so that voice guidance will get you there in the morning.  With internet coverage and Excel, you can follow as many locations as you want.




For serious researchers, the National Library of Scotland's trench map series allows them to see side-by-side or overlay.  tMapperLite will convert a reference and hyperlink to the page on the NLS site.  Just find the map closest to the date you want and zoom to it.



The following map sheets are supported:


11 12 13 14 15
19 20 21 22 23
27 28 29 30 31
36a 36 37 38 39
36b 36c 44 45 46
51c 51b 51a 51 52
57d 57c 57b 57a 57
62d 62c 62b 62a 62
66e 66d 66c 66b 66a


Enjoy and post any questions or support requests below.



Edited by WhiteStarLine
Removed additional images

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