Northern Ireland Farm Mapping

Aerial photograph of farms with mapping overlay


DARD are responsible for issuing Farm maps to each farmer in Northern Ireland. Each farmer receives a paper copy showing field boundaries. The dataset has recently come under scrutiny from European fund Auditors, since it forms the basis of claims for financial subsidy under the Single Farm Payment (SFP) scheme. As a consequence of visits from the fund Auditors, and subsequent discussion of risk to the SFP fund, DARD wish to update their GIS (LPIS) with the most up to date LPS data available.

The Pilot Project

DARD have provisional funding for a team of 60 staff to address any differences between the LPS & DARD datasets. An initial Pilot Project is analysing differences based on a sample set of 250 selected farms.

GIS Solution

With almost 800,000 individual fields to analyse, a GIS (geographical information system) approach will create parcels based on underlying orthophotography. Four regional teams (two in Belfast, one in Omagh and one in Downpatrick) are producing the data which is fed back into the LPIS (DARD) mapping on a regular basis and is subject to quality assurance from dedicated teams of DARD field inspectors. This GIS solution will benefit stakeholders at all levels. The speed, accuracy and adaptability of GIS will enable decisions to be rapidly made and quantified.

Large scale aerial photograph of farms with  a mapping overlay in red, detailed below.

The user interface showing farm boundaries (red) overlaid with building and vegetation polygons, which will subsequently be considered for exception from Single Farm Payment Scheme.