I have a base map from ONS of the entire UK and on another layer I have a boundary outline for the smaller area which I want to crop the base map to.

How do I delete everything outside of this small area because the ONS base map has many features?


3 Answers 3


The accepted method did not work for me because my basemap layer wouldn't show up in the Input Features dropdown.

I solved this by doing the following:

  1. At the View menu, choose Data Frame Options.
  2. At the Data Frame Tab look for "Clip Options"
  3. Choose Clip to shape
  4. Then click the Specify Shape button
  5. Then select the boundary layer as input
  6. Apply and the basemap will be cropped to that shape
  • 1
    Please note that the two answers do two different things. 'MyFamily' answer clips the actual data while this answer masks the data from the view, while doing nothing to the underlying data. Unfortunately, Esri uses the word 'clip' in many different ways.
    – Rex
    Apr 26, 2017 at 20:10

You need to clip the vector features using your other layer as the Clip Feature. The output file will be a feature class of the ONS vector map in the shape of your clip feature.

The tool should be in Geoprocessing > Clipas a default


You can also:

  • right click map frame, choose 'properties'
  • click Data Frame tab,
  • under clip options, choose 'clip to shape',
  • click specify shape button
  • choose outline of features
  • in the layer drop down, choose your clip polygon.
  • then click Apply, then OK

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