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Unrecorded errors

Request for information – FOI14474


Thank you for your email of 21 July 2014, phrased as a request for information under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) 2000, as follows:

“When reading other requests for Information to the OS, it was noted "Any inadvertent errors or unrecorded changes which are brought to the attention of Ordnance Survey are amended as soon as convenient."

If there is a more convenient way for map users to report to OS any errors or unrecorded changes other than through WDTK, or to check what the latest map shows before reporting an error that may already have been corrected, please do advise. ie through a form on your website for example? You suggest emailing opendata@ordnancesurvey.co.uk however this is not shown publicly, for wider benefit.”

Our response

May I please remind you that the Freedom of Information Act is to make provision for the disclosure of information which is held in a recorded format by an organisation. Having reviewed your information request, Ordnance Survey is unable to comply, because in this instance you have not been clear in detailing the specific ‘held and recorded information’ you require Ordnance Survey to provide to you. We therefore consider your correspondence does not constitute a valid request under section 8 of Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) 2000, as it does not adequately describe the information required, and we will not be complying with this request.

However, in the “spirit” of the Freedom of Information Act, I am able to provide a response as follows under Section 16 of the Act ‘the duty to provide advice and assistance’, as follows:

Ordnance Survey is always willing to receive information on potential errors, omissions or unrecorded changes relating to its mapping. These may be submitted through our Customer Service Centre by email customerservices@os.uk, in writing (to Customer Services at the address given below) or by telephone (+44 (0) 3456 050505) or Fax (+44 (0) 345 0990494).

Until now we have chosen not to create a single web-based form or template for such communications, as examples of possible errors or omissions identified by the public can be very diverse. Different individuals may wish to express their concerns in a variety of different ways.

When communicating information about a potential error, omission or unrecorded change, we appreciate the inclusion of details of the exact location, the nature of the point of topography in question, and the type of map, scale, sheet number etc. and edition and date, of the map on which the point in question has been identified. Ordnance Survey aims to acknowledge all such communications, and where appropriate, to advise on the outcome of Ordnance Survey’s assessment or investigation into the matter.

Emails to opendata@os.uk are normally more appropriate for enquiries specifically about the availability, access to, and use of products within the OS OpenData™ portfolio, rather than for specific points about the accuracy or content of our data, which may be relevant to more than one product. This is why we do not advertise this particular email address as one appropriate to wider generic public enquiries and comments about Ordnance Survey and its products and services.

Internal review

Your enquiry has been processed according to the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) 2000. If you are unhappy with our response, you may request an internal review with our FOI Internal Review Officer, by contacting them as follows:

FOI Internal Review Officer
Customer Service Centre
Ordnance Survey
Adanac Drive
SO16 0AS

Email: foi@os.uk

Please include the reference number above. You may request an internal review where you believe Ordnance Survey has failed to:

  • respond to your request within the time limits (normally 20 working days);
  • tell you whether or not we hold the information;
  • provide the information you have requested;
  • explain the reasons for refusing a request;
  • correctly apply an exemption or exception.

The FOI Internal Review Officer will not have been involved in the original decision. They will conduct an independent internal review and will inform you of the outcome of the review normally within 20 working days, but exceptionally within 40 working days, in line with the Information Commissioner’s guidance. The FOI Internal Review Officer will either: uphold the original decision, provide an additional explanation of the exemption/s applied or release further information, if it is considered appropriate to do so.

Appeal to Information Commissioner's Office (ICO)
If, following the outcome of the internal review you remain unhappy with our response, you may raise an appeal with the Information Commissioner’s Office at:

The Case Reception Unit
Customer Service Team
The Information Commissioner’s Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane

Email: mail@ico.gsi.gov.uk

Telephone helpline: 0303 123 1113 or 01625 545745 for advice, Monday to Friday.

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