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3rd party/external discussions/correspondence with 77m Limited

FOI14621 – Request for information


Thank you for your email of 30 December 2015, requesting the following information in accordance with the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA):

From the 18 November 2015 until the date you send back the required information i.e. the 26 January 2016, please can you detail all 3rd party/external discussions and/or any correspondence you have had concerning 77m Limited? This should include the Shareholders Executive and any other government department or agency.

This information is to include all emails, telephone calls, and any other form of correspondence.

The specific information to be provided should include:

  • The OS personnel involved.
  • The names or names of the 3rd parties including the external organisation represented.
  • Date(s).
  • What was discussed by both parties.

Our response

First, we note that you have requested information up until the date that OS sends back the information, “i.e. 26 January 2016”. The FOIA allows a public authority 20 working days to respond to FOI requests, reflecting the fact that it takes time to identify the information requested, and then to review it, seek relevant third party views, make a decision on the application of any relevant exemptions, make any required redactions, and include in an FOI response.

As such, we do not consider that your request can validly request information created after the date of your request. Nonetheless, in this case, to be helpful, we can confirm that we have reviewed relevant information created up to the date of 20 January 2016.

Secondly, we are not including in this response any information which has been referred to in our response to 77m Ltd in relation to FOI14619.

We can confirm that we hold this information. Whilst we are able to release the information described below (which is available on request), note that some of the information has been redacted as it falls under the “Personal information” exemption in section 40(2) of the FOIA; see below for details. Further, some of the information requested is not being released at all as, again, it is exempted by the FOIA; this is also detailed below.

Information released

  • Email from OS to Land Registry of 25.11.15 at 18:3.
  • Email chain ending with email of 4.12.15 at 12:08 from OS to the Health & Safety Laboratory.
  • Three emails from Central Drafting Unit to OS of 22.12.15 at 09:29, 11:33 and 11:42 – note that the attachments to these emails are not released, as you will already have seen all of these (being correspondence between OS and Gordon Dadds, and FOI information already released).
  • Email chain between OS and Gordon Dadds ending with email from OS of 23.12.15 at 17:41.

Note that in all of the emails released pursuant to this FOI request, we have redacted the names of specific individuals and their contact details, where we consider this information to be exempt under section 40(2) ‘Personal Information’. This includes some third party personal information.

Section 40(2)(a) and (b), together with the condition under section 40(3)(a)(i) and (b) of the FOIA, provides an absolute exemption, where the disclosure of information would contravene any of the data protection principles under the Data Protection Act (DPA) 1998. In this case, we have exempted information constituting the personal data of living individuals, the release of which would be in breach of the Data Protection Principles.

In applying this exemption, we have considered whether disclosure of the personal data in question would be 'fair' (as described in Schedule 1 of the Data Protection Act). We have given particular consideration to the likely expectations of the data subjects regarding the disclosure of their personal information, whether they are already publicly referenced through their position and if they would expect to be publicly referenced in this manner, in reaching our decision to withhold this information.

Information not released

  • Two email chains between OS and the Shareholder Executive – this information is exempt from disclosure under section 36(2)(b) and (c) of the FOIA, i.e. that disclosure of the information would be likely to inhibit the free and frank provision of advice, or the free and frank exchange of views for the purposes of deliberation, or would be likely to prejudice the effective conduct of public affairs.
  • Email chain between OS and The National Archives – this information is exempt from disclosure under section 36(2)(b) and (c) of the FOIA, for the same reasons as set out above.

Public interest test

Section 36(2) is a qualified exemption and we are required to consider the public interest.

In relation to section 36, the public interest in transparency needs to be balanced against the public interest in the effective conduct of public affairs.

Having considered the above, we are satisfied that the public interest is best served by withholding the information under this exemption.

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)
  • Failed to tell you whether or not we hold the information
  • Failed to provide the information you have requested
  • Failed to explain the reasons for refusing a request
  • Failed to 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.

Thank you for your enquiry.

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