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Practitioner Guide

My detailed Practitioner's guide is available via the FreePint shop (published March 2005)

The Legislation

Freedom of Information Act 2000 (HMSO) Website

Campaign for FOI version (reformatted into one PDF) - handy for printing

Further orders made under the Act

Freedom of Information and Data Protection (Appropriate Limit and Fees) Regulations 2004

Statutory Codes of Practice

Compare UK and Scotland

Official Guidance

Department for Constitutional Affairs FOI site : http://www.foi.gov.uk/

DCA Procedural Guidance "The Guidance on Processing Requests provides the government's present view. In the light of practical experience and developments in case-law, this view may change"

DCA: introduction to exemptions An introductory guide to the use of exemptions

DCA Summaries of exemptions A summary of each exemption in a table, highlighting the key issues

DCA Exemptions Guidance Detailed guidance on the use of exemptions and factors to be taken into account when considering their application

DCA Publication Scheme Guidance

DCA Guidance on fees (updated to cover VAT issues)

Guidance from the Information Commissioner

Awareness Guidance Supplments the DCA guidance, adding the interpretation from the IC's Office. Numbered 1- 28, covers issues such as the public interest text, personal information etc

Publication scheme guidance

Guidance by Sector

Higher and Further Education: JISC FOI pages

Schools: Teachernet guidance

NHS: FOI microsite Includes an online FOI surgery

Local Government
Local Government Association: Freedom of information: practical guide to the Freedom of Information Act 2000 for local authorities (published November 2001)
by Published: November 2001
Members Price: £ 10.00
Non-Members Price: £ 20.00

Improvment and Development Agency (IDEA) FOI resources Registration required

Office of Deputy Prime Minsiter - Local Authority Access to Information – a Consultation. Proposed Amendments to Exemptions in Schedule 12a of the Local Government Act 1972

Police: No documentation publically available. ACPO is taking a coordinating role

Key Issues - Procurement

Office of Government Commerce Guidance: Confidentiality & FOIA Provisions

Training and seminars

Following training providers provide many different courses relating to FOI (these links are no endorsement and the blog has no connection with them)


E-Government Bulletin


Software tools for managing Freedom of Information Act requests

Adam Pope's FOI moniotoring tool.

Adam works for the Government Actuary's Department.

Download the tools

To open the database you’ll need to extract and save it to your hard drive, then right click on it and unclick ‘Read-only’. You may find a message asking you to ‘Convert’ the database. This will happen if you have a different version of Access than 97. Go for it, allow the conversion.

You’ll also need to create separate Excel spreadsheets with names of staff and clients and import them into the appropriate tables. Do this by clicking on File/Get external data/Import within the FOI Monitor, choose the file you’d like imported, and then the appropriate table (either BORROWERS - STAFF or KEYWORD - CLIENT NAMES) and Access will do it’s stuff – they’ll then be available in the drop down boxes on the form.

If you want to edit the database – add your own logo, fields, design or whatever – open the database then hit F11, click on the form or table you want to edit and ‘Design’. It’s easier than you think!

The Government Actuary’s Department retains the copyright on the contents of the file, but you are welcome to distribute it freely according to the GNU Genera

Update Sept 05
The latest release of the Government Actuary’s Department’s free FOI Monitor is now available. New features include a far easier navigation interface, dedicated ‘Public Interest Test’ and ‘Appeals’ forms, a useful ‘Resources’ page, keyboard accessible menus and a ‘Reports’ page. This can generate reports based on the Department of Constitutional Affairs’ central monitoring reporting requirements

Commercial software (I have no connection with any of these firms)