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Freedom of Information (FOI)

The Freedom of Information Act 2000 provides you access to information we hold as a public authority.

It does this in two ways: 

  • we are obliged to publish certain information about our activities (sometimes known as the publication scheme); and 
  • members of the public are entitled to request information from us

Recorded information includes: 

  •  printed documents
  • electronic records held on systems
  • other electronic data held outside of a computer system
  •  paper files
  • letters
  • emails
  • text or other media messages
  • photographs and sound or video recordings

You can ask for any information that is held by us but it does not mean that we are obliged to provide the information as, in some cases, there may be a good reason why we are unable to make this information public. 

FOI requests can be refused if: 

  • it would cost too much or take too much staff time to deal with the request
  • the request is vexatious
  • the request repeats a previous request from the same person

The act also contains a number of exemptions that allow information to be withheld. 

The FOI Act does not give people access to their own personal data (information about themselves), requests of this nature are covered by the Data Protection Act 2018. To submit a request for your personal data visit our data protection and access to information webpage.

Making an FOI request 

Our website is regularly reviewed and updated with answers to commonly asked questions and previous requests for information, you can find this on the Council Publication Scheme webpage.

If you have been unable to find the answer to your question contact us with details of your information request. Your request will be considered and responded to no later than 20 working days after receiving the request. 

For your FOI request to be valid you must: 

If your request is refused, you can ask us to review our decision. 

After a review, if we still refuse your request, you may ask the Information Commissioner to review that decision.