Information Governance

Here you will find information about how the Council processes your data and the individual rights you have available. This page also provides information on the Freedom of Information Act and Environmental Information Regulations.

Personal information retained by, or submitted to, Northumberland County Council is governed and protected by the General Data Protection Regulation 2018 (GDPR).

This means we will only hold information which is necessary, and it will be kept accurately, safely, and securely. Northumberland County Council is registered on the public register of data controllers, with the registration number Z1727733.

Please direct all data protection queries to

Making a Subject Access Request

Under the UK GDPR you have a number of rights over your personal data; such as the ability to access copies of your personal data (a Subject Access Request or SAR), make changes to incorrect data we hold, erasure, as well as a number of other rights.
To make a Subject Access Request (SAR), you will be required to provide:

  • Photographic ID (passport, driving licence or other government issue identification)
  • Address ID dated within the last 3 months (utility bill, council tax bill or bank statement etc)
If you wish to make a request for information about other people, we do require the following:
  • Signed consent where you are acting on another adult’s behalf, or a child over the age of 12,
  • Written authority to act on another’s behalf (such as a court order or power of attorney), or
  • Evidence of your parental responsibility (birth certificate or court order) where you are acting on behalf of a child aged 12 or below.

If you do not provide the required documentation, there may be a delay in the processing of your request.

All ID documents must be uploaded on the first page of the SAR request form. The upload documents link can be found at the top of the page. 
Subject Access Request form

Northumberland County Council takes its obligations towards data privacy seriously.
If you become aware of a data incident or breach, please contact the Information Governance Team immediately at so that they can assess, investigate the incident, and take any necessary steps as soon as possible.
If you would like to access adoption record information, please contact our adoption support service by clicking here.
Schools are independent data controllers in their own right. They are responsible for the information they hold.

Schools keep information on pupils to support their teaching and learning, and to provide appropriate pastoral care. This includes contact details, national curriculum assessment results and attendance information.

Other data, including ethnicity, special education needs, and relevant medical information is also retained. Schools are sometimes required to provide this data to various government agencies.

Contact details for Northumberland Schools can be found by clicking here.
As a public sector organisation, the Council must be open and transparent. The Freedom of Information Act allows anyone to request any non personal information which is held by the Council.  This is otherwise known as a Freedom of Information Request (FOI).   Under the Environmental Information Regulations you can request environmental information held by the Council, otherwise known as an Environmental Information Regulations Request (EIR).  Environmental information includes such things as information about the air, soil, water and other elements, as well as things such as noise emissions, pollution and buildings.

To make an FOI or EIR request, you can do so using our FOI and EIR Request Form.
To make a request we require some information from you:
  • A brief description of the information you are looking to access, and
  • Your full name and contact details
We would encourage you to check our FOI and EIR Disclosure Log before submitting a request as the information you seek may already be available.
Please note that you cannot access personal data via an FOI or EIR request. You must submit a Subject Access Request to access personal data.
Does it cost to make a request?
No. Requests are free to make, though there may be instances where charges apply. If this is the case, the Council will contact you.
How long will it take you to respond to my request?
The Council has 20 working days to respond to an FOI or EIR request.
For SAR or other individual rights requests, the Council has one calendar month. An extension of up to an additional two months may be applied in complex cases, though you will be contacted if this is the case.
Can you refuse my request?
Yes, the legislation states that the Council can refuse your request if certain conditions apply.  If the Council refuses your request, you will receive a letter explaining why.
What happens if I am unhappy with the outcome of my request?
If you are unhappy with the outcome or handling of your request, you have the right to request an internal review where an internal member of staff will consider whether you request was handled correctly, and in line with legislation.
If you remain dissatisfied, you have the right to raise your concerns to the Information Commissioner’s Office.
You can find contact details for the Information Commissioner, as well as range of advice and guidance on data matters by visiting the website.
The Freedom of Information (FOI) Act requires all public authorities to produce a Publication Scheme that specifies the classes of information which the public authority publishes or intends to publish and routinely make available to the public.

The Information Commissioner's office (ICO) has developed a model publication scheme for Local Authorities.  It may be adopted without modification by any public authority without further approval and will be valid until further notice.
Further information about our publication scheme can be found here.
Northumberland County Council aims to be transparent and provide accessible information to individuals about how their personal data will be used through a privacy notice.

Our full privacy notice is available here.