ITE land classification of Great Britain web map service

This service is a representation of the Land Classification of Great Britain. The Land Classification is a classification of sets of environmental strata (land classes) to be used as a basis for ecological survey. The classification was originally developed by the Institute of Terrestrial Ecology (ITE) in the late 1970s. The strata were created from the multivariate analysis of 75 environmental variables, including climatic data, topographic data, human geographical features and geology data. The Land Classification has provided a stratification for successive ecological surveys (the Countryside Survey of Great Britain), the results of which have characterised the classes in terms of botanical, zoological and landscape features. Additionally, the Land Classification can be used to stratify a wide range of ecological and biogeographical surveys to improve the efficiency of collection, analysis and presentation of information derived from a sample. There are three layers in this WMS (1) the 1990 version of the Land Classification which contains 32 classes - classifying all 240,000km squares in Great Britain (2) the 1998 version in which the Land Classification was adjusted to 40 classes as a consequence of the need to provide National Estimates for habitats in Scotland in addition to GB (3) the 2007 version in which the Land Classification was adjusted once again, to 45 classes, as a consequence of the need to provide Wales-only estimates in addition to those for Scotland and GB.

Publication date: 2007-05-01

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Provenance & quality

The 2007 version of the ITE Land Classification was developed from earlier classifications from 1990 and 1998 which used environmental data from all 240,000 km squares in GB to create the stratifications. It contains 45 classes or strata, distributed across Great Britain. Each stratum consists of areas with similar environmental characteristics. The 2007 classification differs from the 1998 version (40 classes) by splitting classes in England and creating additional classes in Wales. The 1998 version differs from the 1990 version (32 classes) by splitting classes in England and adding additional classes in Scotland.

Correspondence/contact details

Wood, C.M.
Centre of Ecology and Hydrology
Lancaster Environment Centre, Library Avenue, Bailrigg
United Kingdom

Other contacts

Environmental Information Data Centre


Spatial reference system
OSGB 1936 / British National Grid


Bio-geographical regions ecology,  ecology,  Great Britain,  infoMapAccessService Institute of Terrestrial Ecology,  ITE,  Land classification,  Mapping