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Publication Scheme

The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requires public authorities to adopt and maintain a Publication Scheme. We have adopted the Model Publication Scheme prepared by the Information Commissioners Office.

Select a topic below to learn more about our Publication Scheme.

Our Publication Scheme

This Publication Scheme commits the Council to making information publicly available as part of its regular business activities. The information covered by the scheme is detailed in the classes of information outlined. More information on these classes is available from the Information Commissioner's office.

The scheme commits the Council to:

  • Proactively publish or otherwise make available as a matter of routine, information, including environmental information, which is held by the authority and falls within the classifications below.
  • Specify the information which is held by the authority and falls within the classifications below.
  • Proactively publish or otherwise make available as a matter of routine, information in line with the statements contained within this scheme.
  • Produce and publish the methods by which the specific information is made routinely available so that it can be easily identified and accessed by members of the public.
  • Review and update on a regular basis the information the authority makes available under this scheme.
  • Produce a schedule of any fees charged for access to information which is made proactively available.
  • Make this publication scheme available to the public.
  • Publish any dataset held by the authority that has been requested, and any updated versions it holds, unless the authority is satisfied that it is not appropriate to do so; to publish the dataset, where reasonably practicable, in an electronic form that is capable of re-use; and, if any information in the dataset is a relevant copyright work and the public authority is the only owner, to make the information available for re-use under the terms of the Re-use of Public Sector Information Regulations 2015, if they apply, and otherwise under the terms of the Freedom of Information Act section 19. The term ‘dataset’ is defined in section 11(5) of the Freedom of Information Act. The term ‘relevant copyright work’ is defined in section 19(8) of that Act.

The publication scheme does not cover:

  • Information the disclosure of which is prevented by law, or exempt under the Freedom of Information Act, or is otherwise properly considered to be protected from disclosure.
  • Information in draft form.
  • Information that is no longer readily available as it is contained in files that have been placed in archive storage, or is difficult to access for similar reasons.

Classes of information we publish

Most information we publish falls under one of seven categories:

Who we are and what we do

  • organisational information
  • locations and contacts
  • constitutional and legal governance

What we spend and how we spend it

  • financial information relating to projected and actual income and expenditure
  • tendering
  • procurement and contracts

What our priorities are and how we are doing

  • strategy and performance information
  • plans
  • assessments
  • inspections and reviews

How we make decisions

  • policy proposals and decisions
  • decision making processes
  • internal criteria and procedures
  • consultations

Our policies and procedures

  • current written protocols for delivering our functions and responsibilities

Lists and registers

  • current information held in registers required by law
  • other lists and registers relating to the functions of the authority

Services we offer

  • advice and guidance
  • booklets and leaflets
  • transactions and media releases
  • a description of the services offered

Format of information we publish

We will, where possible, make the information covered by this scheme available on our website. Where it is impracticable to make information available on the website or where an individual wishes to access the information in another format, we will make the information available by other means.

Where information is available only by inspection in person, we will provide contact details so that appointments may be made, within a reasonable timescale, to view the information.

Information will be provided in the language in which it is held, or in such other language that is legally required. We will ensure that information will be accessible with specific provision meeting individual needs where appropriate, in line with our Corporate Equality Commitment.

Our obligations under disability and discrimination legislation, and any other legislation which requires information to be provided in alternative formats will be observed when providing information under this scheme.

Charges and fees for information within our Publication Scheme

The purpose of the Publication Scheme is to make as much information as possible available to the public at minimum inconvenience and cost to the public. We will only charge for information where this is specifically allowed under legislation or in order to recover costs such as printing and postage, where these costs exceed £10. The vast majority of information requests will be processed free of charge. 

Please note that we do not charge for officer time spent responding to your request, but the FOIA does not oblige us to provide information if we estimate that it would involve more than 18 hours of work. However, we will contact you and provide assistance/guidance as to how your request can be refined or narrowed. 

Charges may be made for costs such as: 

  • photocopying
  • printing
  • postage and packaging

Charges may also be made for information provided under this scheme where they are justified and are in accordance with a published schedule of fees which is readily available to the public.

Charges may also be made for making datasets (or parts of datasets) that are relevant copyright works available for re-use. These charges will be in accordance with the terms of the Re-use of Public Sector Information Regulations 2015, where they apply, or with regulations made under section 11B of the Freedom of Information Act, or with other statutory powers of the public authority.

Material which is published and accessed on our website can be downloaded free of charge, unless the information is subject to a charging regime specified by legislation. 

Where a charge is made, payment in full will be required before the provision of the information.

Access to information not available under the Publication Scheme

Information held by the Council which does not fall within this scheme may be requested in writing, and will be considered in line with the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

Submit a Freedom of Information request