Council Information


Reference Number: 5442
Request Date: 21/01/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

I am looking to retrieve some information under the Freedom of Information act in regards to your energy supply and usage.

Q.1 What is your current contract end date for gas?
A.1  31st March 2020

Q.2 What is your current contract end date for electricity?
A.2  31st March 2020

Q.3 What is your monthly or annual spend on the gas contract?
A.3  £12,826.38

Q.4 What is your monthly or annual spend on the electricity contract?
A.4  £14,929.96

Q.5 What is your target for consumption reduction?
A.5 N/A

Q.6 What steps do you take to reduce energy consumption?
A.6   N/A

Q.7 Would you benefit from funding options on energy projects?
A.7 N/A


Reference Number: 5506
Request Date: 30/01/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1 Please could you provide me with the number of people employed by your authority as:
·  Barristers
·  Solicitors
·  Qualified legal executives
And could this broken down head count (barristers/solicitors/legal executives) be provided  for 2018 and each of the previous nine years back to 2007/2008?
A.1 We don't have any information for 2007/08 and 2008/9 as NCC was formed on 1 April 2009 through Local Government Review and the information would have been held by each of the former District or Borough Councils. 
We employ solicitors (Lawyers and Principal Lawyers) and do not employ anyone in the other roles mentioned. 
As at 31 March each year end:
2009/10 - 21 Lawyers and 7 Principle Lawyers
2010/11 - 23 Lawyers and 6 Principle Lawyers
2011/12 - 23 Lawyers and 5 Principle Lawyers
2012/13 - 24 Lawyers and 4 Principle Lawyers
2013/14 - 24 Lawyers and 4 Principle Lawyers
2014/15 - 20 Lawyers and 4 Principle Lawyers
2015/16 - 18 Lawyers and 3 Principle Lawyers
2016/17 - 16 Lawyers and 4 Principle Lawyers
2017/18 - 16 Lawyers and 4 Principle Lawyers
2018/19 - 14 Lawyers and 4 Principle Lawyers


Reference Number: 5624
Request Date: 18/02/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1 In an interview with the News Post Leader on Friday 8th February, the Leader of the Council discussed the financing of the Ashington, Blyth and Tyne line. In this he said the total cost for reopening would be £190 Million but that he believed it could be split into phases and that Phase 1 would cost £90 Million and that this was ‘perfectly achievable’.  Under the terms of the freedom of information act please provide the following; All papers relating to development phases of the ABT line.  All correspondence from Councillor Peter Jackson mentioning the phrases ‘Northumberland Line’ or Ashington, Blyth & Tyne’

A.1  Northumberland County Council confirms that it holds the information you have requested, please see the attached issued via Cryptshare due to the size of the attachments.


Reference Number: 5711
Request Date: 05/03/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   Do your councillors have a privacy notice? If so please provide a link to this on your website.

A.1   I am writing to inform you that we have searched our records and the information you requested is not held by Northumberland County Council. Councillors are registered directly with the ICO as their own data controllers, and as such should have their own privacy notices. Please see the link below for individual councillor details:


Reference Number: 5758
Request Date: 12/03/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1     Whether Northumberland County Council has an elected Armed Forces Covenant Champion, and if so, how long they have been in the role?
A.1    Yes, Northumberland County Council have an Armed Forces Champion, A Veteran's Champion and Officer Champion in place since 2012 when the Covenant was signed.

Q.2    I would like to know whether Northumberland County Council has an action plan for implementing the Armed Forces Covenant at a local level.
A.2    There is not a specific action plan but we try to embed the aims of the Covenant in our day to day work and policies.

If yes: I would like to know the details of the plan, whether it is active, and if it is monitored and reviewed.

Q.3    Has Northumberland County Council established an armed forces covenant forum (which includes military representatives, charities and council members)? 
A.3    Yes we have an active forum which meets quarterly and involves all of those groups.

Q.4    I would also like to know whether Northumberland County Council has any support specifically aimed at the veteran community (e.g employment, healthcare & housing schemes).

A.4    Please see report attached, if you require any further information please contact:


Reference Number: 5912
Request Date: 09/04/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   can I have a database containing the contact details for all schools in Northumberland, including postal address and email, please.

A.1   School information is available on our website: 


Reference Number: 6318
Request Date: 03/07/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1    I would like to know details of the artworks owned by the council which are not currently on display, or are not accessible to the public.
I would like the information to be broken down by individual item with a brief summary of the piece, creator, value - or value insured, and if available its location.
A.1    Northumberland County Council confirms that it holds the information you have requested, please see the attached information in response


Reference Number: 6470
Request Date: 31/07/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1     Can you confirm as to whether your local authority has a Statement of Community Involvement? 

A.1     Yes the Council does have a Statement of Community Involvement.

Q.2     Can you confirm when the authority published the Statement of Community Involvement? 

A.2      The Council's Statement of Community Involvement was adopted by the Council in February 2015.

Q..3     When is your next expected consultation/update? 

A.3     The Council does not currently have any plans to review and update the document at the moment.

Q.4     Do you have a publicly available link to the SCI? 

A.4     The Statement of Community Involvement is publicly available via the following link on the Council's website:

Q.5     Is the local Civic Society or Civic Trust identified by the local planning authority as a Consultee (whether Statutory or Non-Statutory) in the Planning System within the Statement of Community Involvement?

A.5     Local Civic Societies or Civic Trusts are not individually identified in the Statement of Community Involvement.  They are classed as a "General Consultation Body" within the Statement of Community Involvement and are listed a such on the Council's Local Plan consultation database and are consulted on all planning policy document consultations.


Reference Number: 6533
Request Date: 15/08/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1    We would be grateful if you could provide the name of the authority in full; your region; and a contact for any follow-up questions, if possible here:

A.1    Authority Name: Northumberland County Council
Region: Northumberland

A.1    If you have any follow up questions please address to 
The authority’s Community Asset Transfer (CAT) policy

 Q.2    Does the authority have a published Community Asset Transfer* policy?
*Community Asset Transfer enables local authorities to transfer the ownership/management of their assets to community organisations at less than full market value in order to achieve a defined public benefit.

Q.2a       If yes, please provide a web-link to the policy.

Q.2a   If yes, please provide a web-link to the policy

Q.2b       If no, is Community Asset Transfer (CAT) integrated into another policy within your local authority – such as wider asset management strategies or VCSE (voluntary, community and social enterprise) policies? Please provide a web-link to this, if so.

Q.2c       If no, does the authority have a CAT policy that is not-published / only available on request? Please provide a copy if available, if so.

Q.3    If the authority has a CAT policy (whether integrated into another strategy or a non-published policy), when was this last updated or reviewed?

A.3    January 2013

The volume of Community Asset Transfer over the last five years

Q.4    How many land or building assets has the authority transferred to community ownership* through Community Asset Transfer in the following time periods (financial years): 2014/15, 2015/16, 2016/17, 2017/18, and 2018/19?

A.4    Please see attached spreadsheet.

* For the purpose of this question, please provide the number of assets that have been transferred using the General Disposal Consent (England) 2003 (Local Government Act 1972), which enables the transfer of assets at less than best or nil consideration to achieve a defined community benefit. 

Q.5    Of those assets that have been transferred, how many are on:
A.5    Please see attached spreadsheet for details.

Q.5a       A freehold agreement
Q.5b       A long lease of at least 25 years or more
Q.5c       A lease of between 5 years and 25 years
Q.5d       A lease of less than 5 years.

Please provide this information for the same time periods as Q3 if possible.

Q.6    Currently, how many land or building assets does the authority own in total? Please exclude social housing assets from this total.
A.6    Freehold = 1248
Leasehold =119 

Q.7  How many of the authority’s land and building assets are currently identified as potential assets available for CAT? Please state if you do not review assets available for CAT in this way.

A.7    We are unable to answer this question, anything that becomes surplus to requirements could be considered as a CAT.


Reference Number: 6595
Request Date: 29/08/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   Please can you supply me with your records for 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019 to date? Please state the number of reports of abuse against councillors for each year. Please also state the nature of the abuse: ie physical, verbal, online.

A.1   I am writing to inform you that we have searched our records and the information you requested is not held by Northumberland County Council.


Reference Number: 6612
Request Date: 04/09/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1    Please advise whether the Local Authority was responsible for updating Bellingham Middle School’s information page on the Government’s Get Information About Schools database yesterday.

If so why is the school indicated to be “Open, but proposed to close”? - also please confirm who the proposer is.

A.1    The DfE have overall management of the Get Information For Schools Site - in relation to schools closing or proposed to close, it is they who update the site.  Currently, Bellingham Middle School and Sports College is listed as open as far as we can see from the Get Information for Schools site. It is not listed as 'open, proposed to close'.  Even under the search by Northumberland local authority for schools 'Open, proposed to close', there are no results for any schools returned. Therefore, we suggest that you contact the DfE regarding this matter


Reference Number: 6781
Request Date: 25/10/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1     All documents, committee reports, memorandums, internal communications, agenda, minutes and supplementary reports in relation to discussions and meetings regarding the Borderlands Growth Deal.

This should include information communicated and shared by Northumberland County Council internally, with the other local authorities which are part of the Borderlands Growth Deal area and with central government.

A.1     Duty to confirm or deny 

The public interest test requires Northumberland County Council to confirm that we hold certain information relating to your request. 

Since work started on Borderlands in 2014 there have been several officers from each of the constituent Councils and the two Governments involved in different stages of the development of the Borderlands Inclusive Growth Deal. 
On this basis, the Council/Government has generated several thousands of emails and for calendar years 2018-19 alone, around 1000 files pertaining to the initiative. This is in addition to other means of correspondence. 

The Council would be required to locate and review any correspondence to identify what is within scope and if there is any commercially, politically or personal sensitive data. It is estimated that this would equate to between 4,000 and 5,000 hours (approx. 10 minutes per record). Given the nature of the information requested only senior officers have been involved in this project so the cost would be at £25 per hour, as per the FOI Act. 

When converted to cost this significantly exceeds the limit of £450 as defined by the Freedom of Information Act 2000.  

Therefore in accordance with Section 12 of the above Act the Council is refusing the request as it would exceed the cost limit.


Reference Number: 6967
Request Date: 12/11/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1    Has or will your local authority have a Christmas lights switch on or similar event in October, November or December 2019?

A.1     Nil response

If no, then no further questions apply and to save you time, a response just saying "No" will suffice
If yes, then please confirm the following:

Q.2    Who did (or will do) the switch on or performed (or will perform) at the event?

Q.3    Were they (or will they be) paid a fee to do so? If so, how much were they paid (or will they be paid)? If more than one, please provide a breakdown.

Q.4    Were (or will) expenses paid, either in addition to any fee or instead of? If so, please provide a breakdown of these.

For the avoidance of doubt this FOI enquiry is about Christmas light switch on events in the run-up to Christmas 2019.


Reference Number: 7029
Request Date: 25/11/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1    The name of your Data Protection Officer

A.1     The Council does not disclose the names of individual employees other than Heads of Service and Directors. The Council's Information Governance Manager is the DPO and Liam Henry, Assistant Director: Legal Services is the Council's SIRO (most senior officer responsible). 

Q.2    Is your DPO an employee of your organisation

A.2     Yes

Q.3    If not an employee are they privately contracted or contracted via a comply

A.3     n/a

Q.4    If via a company the name of the company

A.4     n/a

Q.5    The pay band of the DPO if employed by your organisation

A.5     Band 10 (SCP 39 £41,675 - SCP 43 £45,591)


Reference Number: 7034
Request Date: 25/11/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1      Do you fund Medication Prompts?
Q.2      If yes, under which funding budget line/service is it allocated? (i.e Pharmacy, IPP, CHC, DTOC etc)
Q.3      Do you joint fund Medication Prompts with your local Clinical Commissioning Group / Health Funding Authority?
Q.4      How many clients do you currently fund?
Q.5      What is your predicted annual spending for Medication Prompts 2019/2020?
Q.6      How long / since when have you funded Medication Prompting Service?

A.1 - A.6     We do not hold information on this subject.