Only six per cent of the UK has been built on, according to new software

Only six per cent of UK land is built on while five out of six people now live in towns and cities, according to a new atlas.

And more than half the land is in agricultural use.

The state of the art maps show England is the most urban of the home nations, yet still, only nine per cent of the land is built on.

The new maps come from Professor Alasdair Rae, an academic in Sheffield University’s Urban Studies department.

Map for Aberdeenshire. Only six per cent of UK land is built on while five out of six people now live in towns and cities, according to a new atlas.

More than half (56 per cent) of the country’s land is taken up by agriculture – raising animals for meat and growing crops, the atlas shows.

Professor Rae has also created individual land cover maps for each of the UK’s 391 local authority areas.

Moray in North East Scotland is covered by the most forest of any local authority, 21 per cent.

Northern Ireland is home to the local authority with the most space for grazing as 85 per cent of Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon is considered pasture.

The City of London is the most built up local authority in the UK with 98 per cent of the area built on.

The high number of golf courses and acres of royal parks in Richmond-Upon-Thames in South West London makes it the most urban green area at 41 per cent.

Professor Rae said: “It may feel like a very densely populated urban nation, but the reality is that the vast majority of the land area of the UK is not built on.

Map for Allerdale. Only six per cent of UK land is built on while five out of six people now live in towns and cities, according to a new atlas.

“Given that 83 per cent of the population of the UK lives in urban areas it is not surprising that some people hold the opposite to be true.

“However, from a land cover point of view, the United Kingdom is in fact dominated by pasture and arable land.

“At a local level things can be very different from the national picture, so it is important to know how land is being used as there are often competing needs. By knowing the makeup of the local landscape it is easier to make informed decisions about how land should be used and plan for the future.”

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