Freedom of Information Act 2000


Requesting Information Under the Freedom of Information Act

Should I make a request?

If you are looking for information about the University, the first place to look is in the Publication Scheme, but if what you want is not there, then you can ask the University to provide it.

How do I make a request?

Requests under the FOI Act must be made in writing (email is acceptable).  You must include details of the information you are requesting, along with your name and your address (email or postal) for correspondence.  Your do not have to state that the request is made under the FOI Act.

Please address your request to the relevant contact for the publication scheme in question.

What data can I expect to receive?

There may be times when we cannot provide the information you request because the information is covered by exemptions from disclosure. For example:

  • the information may relate to another person;
  • may have Health & Safety implications;
  • may be in the process of being published elsewhere;
  • may be part of an investigation being carried out by the University;
  • its disclosure might prejudice any law enforcement action, or;
  • it may be in the commercial interests of the University not to release that information.

If we cannot provide any or all of the information you request, we will tell you the reason for it not being provided. 

How long will it take?

We will provide the information you ask for within 20 working days of the day after we receive your request. If a request can be dealt with quickly e.g. sending you a University publication, we will simply respond as soon as possible. If however, it will take us longer to reply, we will acknowledge your request, informing you whether we hold the information you require, and tell you the date by which we will reply.

Is there a charge?

It is also possible, depending on the nature of your request, that there may be a fee to pay for requesting information. The University can charge a fee when the cost of finding the information requested rises over £450, plus the University can charge for postage and photocopying costs.

You will be informed if there is a fee to pay and how much the fee will be. The fee must be received by the University before the information is provided. It may be possible to reduce the fee payable by refining your request and the Information Disclosure Team can discuss how this could be done. The University's full fee charging policy can be found here.

What if I am not happy with the response?

If you disagree with the University's reasons you can complain to the Vice-Chancellor in writing at University House, Winston Churchill Avenue, Portsmouth PO1 2UP, explaining why you believe the information should be provided.

If, once the Vice-Chancellor has considered your complaint and you still believe we should provide the information, then you may make representations to the Information Commissioner to that effect. More details of this process can be found at