A spokesman for conservation charity the Canal & River Trust has admitted that the organisation may have created multiple tourism maps that make places look like willies.
But Trust spokesman Stephen Hardy said the map is just one of 100 it published about the areas close to canals up and down the country.
He said that as the historic waterways tend to be ‘long, straight-ish things’, there could well be other maps out there shaped like willies.
The Berkhamsted graphic – depicting key landmarks near to the Grand Union Canal – was posted on Facebook by Haresfoot Brewery.
Just one user commented that it looked like a willy, but after it was posted on this website multiple news organistions picked up on the story.
The licence fee payer funded BBC was first to copy the story, followed by the Daily Mail, The Independent, the London Evening Standard, the Metro and others.
Mr Hardy said: “The story keeps getting bigger and bigger.”
He said the phallic shape of the map was unintentional.
He said: “I think it was just naivete really. We are used to dealing with canals and they tend to be long, straight-ish things.
“But since we have had all the coverage, we can see it does look like a willy.”
He said that all the publicity had, albeit unintentionally, provided great coverage for the Trust and for Berkhamsted.