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Freedom of information

The Freedom of Information Act (FOI) was introduced to help bring about a culture of openness within the public sector and gives you a general right of access to information held by us.

Requesting official information we hold

To find out about official information that we hold, you must put your request in writing. You can do this in a number of ways:

Contact us using our online form - Make Your Request

You may also contact us for more information:

Telephone: 01744 676789

Visit: our Customer Service Hub in St Helens Town Hall

Write to: St Helens Borough Council Customer Service Hub, Town Hall, Victoria Square, St Helens, WA10 1HP 

You can expect to receive a reply within 20 working days.

Will the information always be provided?

There are certain reasons why some information may not be given to you. These are called exemptions.

We will either:

  • Provide you with the information you have asked for
  • Tell you that we don't have the information
  • Tell you that that another organisation has the information
  • Apply an exemption to the information and explain the reasons why

In certain circumstances we will ask you to pay a fee for the information. This only happens when the Act allows us to.

Environmental Information Regulations

The Environmental Information Regulations (EIR) were created to support and work with FOI and provide public access to environmental information held in public authorities.

A reasonable charge can be made for providing a response under EIR, in accordance with a published schedule of charges.

Publication Scheme

Under FOI, we must tell you what type of official information we routinely publish. This is called the Publication Scheme. If the information is not in the Publication Scheme, you can contact the council to find out what information we hold.

For more information about the Freedom of Information Act, please visit the Information Commissioner's website.