The UPRN is the Unique Property Reference Number and was created by the Ordnance Survey (OS). It consists of numbers of up to 12 digits in length.
Every local authority in the UK has a statutory obligation to manage and maintain their address register. That means every unit of land and property is allocated a Unique Property Reference Number (UPRN) and geographic coordinates, ensuring there is one true record for each address.
When address changes are made, they are done so against the UPRN, enabling accuracy of address maintenance, as well as providing access to the full history of an address.
Each local authority submits their address register (including the UPRN) to GeoPlace
The UPRN stays unique to each property and will remain in its existing format. Any information added will be linked to matching records in different databases.
This is not solely for houses or even buildings! It may be an object that might not have a ‘normal’ address – such as a Postbox, bus shelter or an electricity substation for example. UPRNs provide every property (or object) with a consistent 12-digit identifier throughout its lifecycle, from planning through to demolition.
The UPRN will usually be allocated at the time of planning. It is likely that in the future anyone requesting any services to their property might simply quote their UPRN to avoid the requirement of even postcodes.
The UPRN is already being used by the emergency services, government, flood defence and many other bodies to ensure that data is accurate and consistent across all media.
You will increasingly see your own number on documents issued to you.
You can find the UPRN of all properties at Find My Address.
See also USRN – Unique Street Reference Number