6 October 2015
Dan Horrex – Corporate Information Manager
0345 045 5200
[Cambridgeshire County Council request email]
Customer Service and Transformation
Corporate Director, Sue Grace
Mr Robert Whittaker
Information Governance Team
Cambridgeshire County Council
Dear Mr Whittaker Re: Internal review of request reference 5554
Further to your email of 11 August 2015, I have completed my review of the handling
of your request; please find below the results of that investigation. I shall deal with
the technical handling and each of the points you have raised in your email. Where
reference is made to specific sections of legislation, you can find them appended to
this letter for ease of reference. 1, Technical handling
On 30 April 2015, you submitted the following request for access to information: “Could you also confirm (as per my internal review request) in exactly what format
and to what precision the geographic coordinates are stored within your MapInfo
Since you talk of "grid references", would I be correct in assuming that the
coordinates are stored as numerical OSGB eastings and northings? If so what it the
precision used -- do you store figures down to the nearest metre, or do the
coordinates have more or fewer significant figures than that? Alternatively, perhaps
the coordinates are stored as WGS84 latitude and longitude values. If so, how many
significant figures / decimal places are stored?
One final question (which may be very important when it come to judging the
accuracy and completeness of the data) , can you confirm whether or not you include
(a derivative of) the electronic PRoW data you hold in your submissions to the
National Street Gazetteer? To that end, can you please provide me with a copy of
In this instance, the Environmental Information Regulations 2004 (EIR) permit the
dissemination of environmental information held by an authority on request.
Regulation 2 of the EIR provides the definition of “environmental information”. I have
considered this definition and I am satisfied that the information you have requested
falls within the definition of environmental information.
Therefore, the information that you have requested was correctly dealt with under the
Regulation 5(1) of the EIR contains a duty to make environmental information
available on request and Regulation 5(2) provides that it must be done no later than
twenty working days following receipt of a valid request.
The Council issued its full response to you on 5 August 2015. This was in breach of
its obligations under the EIR and as such, your complaint is upheld. 2. I think it is quite obvious from my messages of 1st June, 10th June, 17th June and
22nd July, that I am not happy with the amount of time it took you to respond.
Accordingly I would like to ask for a formal review of the Council's handling of this
request. I trust that the review will be conducted by a senior official outside of the
teams that were involved in handling the original request. I also trust that it will
address the queries I raised on 22nd July, namely to provide an explanation for the
delay and details of whether anyone was instructed not to respond to my messages.
I can confirm that the delay that you have experienced has been in part due to the
large volume of requests received by the Information Governance Team, in
conjunction with some unexpected leave of officers who were able to deal with your
I can also confirm that at no point has any officer been instructed not to respond to
your messages. 3. Finally, I see that the metadata statement that you provided in response to my
request is dated 30/07/2015. Could you please also send me a copy of the most
recent version that existed at the time of my request (i.e. 30th April). If LSG updates
are submitted monthly, this will presumably be one from either the end of March or
the end of April 2015.
Please see the attached document, IR APP, for a copy of the metadata statement
dated 28 April 2015.
My review is now concluded; if you continue to be dissatisfied with decision of this
complaints process, you may apply directly to the Information Commissioner (ICO) for
a decision. The ICO can be contacted at: The Information Commissioner’s Office,
Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire SK9 5AF.
Corporate Information Manager
Appendix 1 – relevant legislation
Environmental Information Regulations 2004 Interpretation
2.—(1) In these Regulations—
“environmental information” has the same meaning as in Article 2(1) of the Directive,
namely any information in written, visual, aural, electronic or any other material form
(a) the state of the elements of the environment, such as air and atmosphere, water,
soil, land, landscape and natural sites including wetlands, coastal and marine areas,
biological diversity and its components, including genetically modified organisms, and
the interaction among these elements;
(b) factors, such as substances, energy, noise, radiation or waste, including
radioactive waste, emissions, discharges and other releases into the environment,
affecting or likely to affect the elements of the environment referred to in (a);
(c) measures (including administrative measures), such as policies, legislation, plans,
programmes, environmental agreements, and activities affecting or likely to affect the
elements and factors referred to in (a) and (b) as well as measures or activities
designed to protect those elements;
(d) reports on the implementation of environmental legislation;
(e) cost-benefit and other economic analyses and assumptions used within the
framework of the measures and activities referred to in (c); and
(f) the state of human health and safety, including the contamination of the food chain,
where relevant, conditions of human life, cultural sites and built structures inasmuch
as they are or may be affected by the state of the elements of the environment
referred to in (a) or, through those elements, by any of the matters referred to in (b)
and (c); Duty to make available environmental information on request
5.—(1) Subject to paragraph (3) and in accordance with paragraphs (2), (4), (5) and
(6) and the remaining provisions of this Part and Part 3 of these Regulations, a public
authority that holds environmental information shall make it available on request.
(2) Information shall be made available under paragraph (1) as soon as possible and
no later than 20 working days after the date of receipt of the request.