Forestry Commission Soil Maps

The vector map provides detailed (1:10,000) soil type information for parts of the Public Forest Estate within England, Scotland and Wales. A single Great Britain version is also available.

The main Soil Groups are given and for most polygons, a lower level of Soil Type is also provided. Additionally, for each spatially mapped polygon, up to 3 different soils may be identified and their percentage occurrence within that unit specified. Whilst the soil codes and percentage values are provided for all three potential soils identified within a single polygon, only the primary soil type is identified by name.

The FC soil classification allows for additional descriptive information about the main soil types. For example, whether a soil has previously been cultivated, is extremely stony, loamy, indurated or podzolic. These are know as Phases and are added to the soil code using a suffix. The Full_string field included in the data provides a detailed, single code for each mapped unit which includes the soil type and any phases for all of the soils (up to 3) identified within a single polygon.

These data are delivered under the terms of the Ordnance Survey End User Licence License (

Any maps produced using this data should contain the following Forestry Commission acknowledgement: "Contains, or is based on, information supplied by the Forestry Commission. © Crown copyright and database right [Year] Ordnance Survey [100021242]".

The soils of Scotland in the World Reference Base classification system

Map legend

Key Forestry Commission Soil Groups
Basin Big
Brown Earth
Calcareous Soil
Eroded Bog
Flat or Raised Bogs
Flushed Blanket Bog
Ground-Water Gley
Ironpan Soil
Littoral Soil
Man-made soil
Peaty Surface-water Gley
Skeletal Soil
Surface-water Gley
Unflushed Blanket Bog
Valley Complex
Title National Forest Estate Soil Maps (England, Scotland, Wales, GB)
Source Forestry Commission & Natural Resources Wales
Scale(s) 1:10,000 vector
Coverage Parts of the Public Forest Estate throughout Great Britain
Format ESRI Shapefile
Price N/A
Uses Local
Map Viewer View in UKSO Map Viewer
WMS Link
Images High resolution | Low resolution