The successful GeoVation Challenge finalists moved a step closer to receiving funding for their ideas on How can we enable people in Britain to live in better places? The competition launched last September, encouraged entrants to think creatively about our diverse housing needs.

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Lynne Nicholson, Head of Data and Products

Lynne Nicholson, Land Registry’s representative on the Judging Panel said, “It is really exciting to see how people are using our datasets to create solutions that benefit the wider community. Ideas that help people save money, think more strategically or improve their local community are real winners in my view.”

We are proud to support these start-up companies with funding and business expertise along with Ordnance Survey, helping them to turn their ideas into commercial ventures. Deciding how to split the £101,000 prize among the four finalist teams was a difficult decision, as teams completed the Venture plans slightly differently. In the end it was decided to award funding to two teams and request additional information from the remaining two, before funding is confirmed.”

  • Geo-vey: Swindon based Dave Barter and Richard Reynolds from Nautoguide Ltd will be awarded £29,000 to develop their idea that uses the power of crowd-sourcing. Using Land Registry and Ordnance Survey data to underpin their free online portal, they will help communities drive local improvements. Citizens will be encouraged to suggest improvements in their area, which will be submitted to the relevant authorities when specific thresholds are reached. Organisations who want to gauge public opinion on planned or suggested infrastructure improvements will also be able to use the tool to conduct surveys for a fee.
  • MyHome Energy Planner: Taking control of household energy demands was the idea submitted by the team from Carbon Co-op, National Energy Foundation, OpenEnergyMonitor and URBED. An award of £25,000 will allow the team to create an online tool that empowers households to understand their current energy usage and control future energy demand. Using a prescribed set of measures householders will be able to reduce energy usage. The team will pilot the tool and work with local authorities and their existing network to raise market awareness.
  • Democratising Development: Our Birmingham based team, Andy Reeve and Joyjit Sarjar plan to use Land Registry and Ordnance Survey data to identify small disused or unmanaged sites, in order to help increase the housing stock. Working on the themes of affordability and availability, the team will marry these sites and the WikiHouse principles of building small, easy to assemble houses, to create affordable self-build options for many citizens.
  • Holistic House Search: Bristol based Ben Morley and his team will use Land Registry and Ordnance Survey data combined with other datasets to provide a web service for people planning to buy a home in a new area. The tool will help users identify a number of factors that could increase the desirability of particular house or area. Other factors that weight the cost of living in a particular house will help users make an informed buying decision.

Holistic House Search won the GeoVation Community Prize of £1,000 – voted for by the other finalists at GeoVation Camp in January 2015.

The judges will confirm the level of funding that will be awarded to the two remaining teams by mid-March.


Jackie Lynch
By Jackie Lynch,
Marketing Executive, Land Registry