1931

Following the original intention to meet every three years, the Conference of Empire Survey Officers met again in July 1931. The report suggests a very packed programme, but does not specify where in London the Conference took place.

There were no less than five papers on the subject of aerial photography, and Sir Charles Close delivered a paper that was, perhaps, indicative of a view that would eventually make him famous – The Public Use of Large-scale Ordnance Maps.

Another paper discussed the use of a form of cadastral survey by the Egyptians in 3400 BC. The paper included a cadastral map that was found on a clay tablet in Babylonia, dating from the 21st century BC.

The resolutions of the Conference included one to meet every three years ‘It is about the time which intervenes between each successive leave’ but (paraphrasing) ‘not in August or September, as the school holidays occur then and provide the only opportunity, for many officers, to make the reacquaintance of their children’.

A further resolution was that future meetings should be held in a suitable place, not necessarily London, where it would be possible for wives to come and where it would be possible to have social functions in the evening for delegates and their wives. In the ensuing discussion, Cambridge emerged as the clear favourite. The suggestion of a summer camp was quickly despatched, it being considered that a summer camp, the delegate’s wives and the rain of an English summer would not go well together!