And the winner is…

I was delighted that the Postcode challenge was so enthusiastically picked up. When I first set the challenge last November there were 19 ‘missing’ postcodes. I can now report that there are just 10, and most of these are around London, which means we’ve pretty much got the country mapped – even if it’s a single tree in a postcode area. This map shows the ‘missing’ postcode areas, so everywhere that is white contains at least one monkey puzzle tree!

-16.01.14 UK postcode NO MPT update

I don’t think there’s anything meaningful I can deduce from this map – like ‘There are hardly any monkey puzzle trees in London’, or ‘No-one is interested in being an Agent in Taunton’…. However, I am really surprised to see Taunton as a ‘gap’ on the map. There must be monkey puzzle trees there. In fact, the South West region (as defined for the Monkey Map) contains the most trees – nearly 600 finds. The North West isn’t far behind with nearly 550. Despite the lack of wider London area monkeys, the South East region is nearly 300 trees, as is Wales and Shropshire (defined as one region for the Monkey Map). Scotland comes next with nearly 250 trees, following by the North East at just over 200, West Midlands with 180 and the lowest being just 63 trees in the East region.

So, how did we do on the Postcode challenge?

Well within days of setting the challenge, Agent John in Fife had shot off to Manchester and bagged M, and has since returned and got half a dozen more there. He also set off in the rain to crack Falkirk and has sent several now from FK. Agent Baxter in the Midlands turned in our first in Portsmouth, PO and Northampton, NN.

A month later, progress is slow, but Agent Philip turned up one in Woodcote Heath, which is in Sutton (south of Croydon), postcode SM. This was posted by Jack Wellington on Twitter. And Gareth Maskell wrote to tell me about a tree in Halstead, near Colchester, which I duly found on Google, being the first in CO.

In the last week Agent Baxter has found a tree in Croydon (on Google), with CR being one of the elusive South East postcodes, but did observe that, ‘Croydon seems to be thin on monkeys.’ *

It’s a shame I’m not able to give a petrol allowance to Agents, as also this week, Agent John in Fife has been hard at work driving across the country by unusual routes, all in the name of monkey hunting, and has brought back Sunderland, SR. He also returned triumphant from Motherwell with not just one, but an extraordinary fine pair in Motherwell, ML.

ML1 and ML2

ML1 and ML2

John also has a spy in Shetland, and I am hopeful about that. And he has also answered a question I have always wondered, well since I became so fond of postcodes! Why is the postcode for Shetland ZE? Had they run out of all permutations of SE, ST or SL? Well… John referred to Shetland as ‘Zetland’… so now I know. Thanks John!

I know you enjoy the competitive edge here at Monkey Map. So the winner of the Postcode challenge is most definitely Agent John in Fife with his four postcodes, but also multiple finds in many of those areas. Very tenacious work. John is also very dedicated in that he always sees his finds in person, which isn’t actually a stipulation for Agents but nevertheless very thorough. Good job. Well done John.

Agent Baxter has worked hard on the challenge, so a nod to him too.

Thank you everyone for your dedication to the task.

For the completist – here’s the ‘missing’ postcodes:

In London and South East there are the most ‘gaps’. These are: EC (City of London), IG (Ilford), LU (Luton), RM (Romford), SG (Stevenage), UB (Uxbridge), and WC (West Central London). I have reported that Agent Green has worked very hard in Central London and not found any in EC or WC.

In the South West: SP (Salisbury) and TA (Taunton).

In Scotland: just ZE (Shetland).

*Note (31 January 2016) – Under the new guidelines Google Streetview trees will no longer be accepted, they must be trees you have seen yourself, more here. So the CR catalogue is without it’s first real find.

Submissions to be made through the submission form. Thank you.

This ‘Monkey Map’ project is a personal project and the work of me, Sarah Horton.
I am helped by my task of cataloguing all monkeys by keen monkey puzzle hunters who also do this in their free time.
Thank you everyone for your support.

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