Everything has to take a break from time to time, but now I can happily say that FOI Directory is back in operation.

Over the last month, while the FOI Act has been turning 10 years old, this website has undergone its biggest change since it was started in late 2012.

Changes have been made to both the way that the website looks and there has been quite a substantial amount of new information added. Here’s what has changed:

  • All FOI contact directories are now hosted on Google Drive and embedded in the page.
  • Almost all of the contacts have been re-checked for accuracy and updated where they were incorrect. This is an ongoing process and I’m grateful to those who have emailed in any errors they have spotted.
  • More contact lists have been added, such as a list for county councils (local education authorities and NHS Foundation trusts will be updated in the next two days).
  • A detailed guide to the Act has been included and updated. This includes how to make requests, a requester’s rights, how to complain, and more.
  • There are links to all of the Information Commissioner’s and Ministry of Justices’ guidance on the application of exemptions.
  • There are now templates for FOI and EIR requests.
  • In addition to these templates there are also templates, and snippets, for making complaints about FOI requests. These include what to say when an authority has not given you information in the file format you requested, what to say when the authority is dragging its heels and more.
  • In one nerdy change the website’s URL has changed from FOIDirectory.co.uk to the new format of FOI.Directory.

In addition to these changes that have already been made I am also continuing to add more lists of public authorities. There will be more added within the coming weeks.

In the last two years this website has received far more support than I was ever expecting and I hope that it can continue to be useful to those wanting to make FOI requests.

If anyone ever wants to get in touch with suggestions or possible improvements for the website feel free to email me: mattburgess100@gmail.com.


 

I am a journalist and author. I am a staff writer at the UK edition of WIRED magazine and in 2015 my book, Freedom of Information: A Practical Guide for UK Journalists, was published. I created FOI Directory in 2012.