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Introduction

The Freedom of Information Act (2000) requires every public authority to adopt and maintain a publication scheme. Its purpose is to ensure a significant amount of information is easily and routinely available.

The act also requires every public authority to comply with requests for the information that it holds unless an exemption from disclosure applies.

If you would like to find out more about the Freedom of Information Act, you can follow this link to visit the website of the Information Commissioner's Office:

Information Commissioner's Office website

Requesting Information

The Freedom of Information Act gives the right to any individual (irrespective of age, nationality, location, etc.) to make a request for information that we hold. The request must be made in writing (including by fax or e-mail), it must give your name and address, and it must provide enough detail for us to identify the information required.

We are happy to help you with advice and assistance to make your request. We will either provide you with the information within 20 working days, or we will explain why the information is exempt from disclosure. We may make a charge to cover our costs for preparing and sending the information.

Exempt Information

We try to be as open as possible in publishing information but there are instances where, for legitimate reasons, some information is withheld. The Freedom of Information Act describes a number of exemptions and the circumstances where these apply.

When we withhold information, we explain the reason that we believe the information is exempt from publication. For example, information will not be available if it is confidential or of a commercially sensitive nature, or where its release would be in conflict with the conditions under the Data Protection Act. If you disagree with our decision, you have the right to complain.

Charges

We use this website to publish our information free of charge. If you prefer, we can print single pages of the website information for you.

We may make a charge for multiple prints or for documents that are not available on the website, to cover our costs for copying, postage and packing. We would require payment in advance in this case.

We will provide up to 24 pages of information from the website free of charge. For larger quantities we charge 20 pence per page plus postage. Multiple requests from the same individual or organisation will be treated as a single request and the appropriate charge levied.

Information may also be made available in large print, or within electronic audio files upon request. Note that we may make a charge to cover our costs for preparing the information in these formats. We would require payment in advance in this case.

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