Guidance on Freedom of Information requests to the North East Combined Authority

Freedom of Information (FOI) requests

The North East Combined Authority publishes and maintains a wide range of information on its website – please visit the about page.
In circumstances where members of the public are unable to find what they are seeking, we will helpfully respond to any information requests.  
Please send your information request to: 

We will aim to reply to requests with 10 working days of receipt. If we don't hold the information you ask for, we will try to help you find where you need to go for it.  
If you are not satisfied with the information provided, you may decide to submit a request for information under the Freedom of Information Act or Environmental Information Regulations (EIR). In this case, the request should be made directly to our Data Protection Officer (DPO) (via a Service Level Agreement who performs this service for the North East Combined Authority).   
Before submitting a request to the North East Combined Authority, you should ensure that you have submitted the request to the correct organisation. 

If you have a request that does not directly relate to an activity carried out specifically by the Combined Authority, you should submit your request to the appropriate Council or transport company/organisation. 

How do I request information under the Freedom of Information Act or Environmental Information Regulations? 

Your request must be made in writing and should contain: 

  • your name;  
  • an address for us to contact you; and  
  • a description of the information held by the North East Mayoral Combined that you are interested in.  

You can send your requests by email to: 

Or post to:  

Freedom of Information Officer 
The North East Combined Authority 
The Lumen, St James Boulevard 
Newcastle upon Tyne 

What information can I get? 

Unless it is exempt, you will be able to get any information that the North East Combined Authority holds. This can include: 

  • Our policies and plans  
  • How we handle issues and make decisions  
  • Financial information 
  • Our performance  

Is there any information I cannot get?  

You may not be able to get the information you request if it is exempt. You can find out more details about the exemptions in the Freedom of Information Act and Environmental Information Regulations from the Information Commissioner's website.  
If the Data Protection Officer (DPO) decides that it cannot disclose the information you have requested, they will explain the reasons for its decision. 

How much will it cost?  

The DPO will deal with most requests free of charge. However, if the request takes more than 18 hours to satisfy, they may make a charge. They may also charge you for the cost of copying, printing, postage or translating the information where this is significant. The DPO will tell you about any charges before starting work on your request. The same charges will apply to requests for Environmental Information. 

How quickly will I get the information?  

The DPO is required to respond to FOI requests within 20 working days. 

What can I do if I am not happy with the DPO's decision on my request?  

If you are not happy with the outcome of your request, you can request a review through the North East Mayoral Combined Authority’s FOI internal review procedure. They will provide you with details of how to seek such a review when responding to your request.  
Internal reviews will be carried out by a review panel, which will comprise of at least two officers, who have not been directly involved with the initial decision process.  

The DPO will acknowledge your request for review within two days of receiving it and will confirm when it expects to be able to respond to your request for review. The DPO will respond promptly and usually within 20 working days of receiving your request for review. There may be very rare occasions when the DPO is unable to respond within 20 working days, for very complex requests for example. In these cases they will notify you of when a response can be expected.  
Once the review panel has met to consider your request you will be informed of its decision, the reasons for that decision and how to make a further appeal to the Information Commissioner's Office, if you are still unhappy. 

Where can I get further information? 

The Information Commissioner's Office is responsible for ensuring that all public authorities comply with the Freedom of Information, EIR and Data Protection Acts. Their website provides a lot of background information and guidance on these pieces of legislation. 

Subject Access Requests (SAR) 

You also have the right to request the information we hold about you.

How do I request information you hold about me?

A Subject Access Request (SAR) can be made by email to: 

Or post to:  
Freedom of Information Officer 
The North East Combined Authority 
The Lumen, St James Boulevard 
Newcastle upon Tyne

What information can I request?

The SAR provides the right for an individual to request their own personal details that we may hold. The Combined Authority is not required to respond to requests for information unless it has been provided with adequate and reasonable details. We might need to ask for identification from the requester. 

How much will it cost? 

There is usually no charge for making a Subject Access Request. 

How quickly will I get the information? 

In accordance with SAR guidance, we are required to respond within one month, however, in some cases this may be extended to three months. If we need the extra time, we will let you know. 

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