Privacy & Cookies

Our privacy and cookies notice



Last updated: 15/09/2022. Changes made:

  1. A few minor typographical errors were corrected that do not materially affect the privacy notice.


The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a Europe-wide law that replaces the Data Protection Act 1998 in the UK. It is part of the wider package of reform to data protection that includes the Data Protection Act (DPA) 2018. The GDPR and DPA 2018 set out requirements for how organisations will need to process personal data from 25 May 2018.

The UK Environmental Observation Framework (UKEOF) secretariat is provided by the UK Centre for Ecology & Hydrology (UKCEH). UKCEH manages this website, the UKEOF Catalogue and the UKEOF e-news service. This privacy notice tells you what to expect when UKCEH collects your personal information in the course of its UKEOF secretariat tasks.

This privacy notice will be revised as required; you are encouraged to revisit the privacy notice regularly to read the latest version.

Please read the following carefully to understand our views and practices regarding your personal data and how we will process it. By visiting and affiliated websites you are accepting and consenting to the practices described in this policy.

The name and contact details of UKCEH, who provide the UKEOF secretariat function

The UKCEH Head Office is:

UK Centre for Ecology & Hydrology
Maclean Building, Benson Lane
Crowmarsh Gifford
OX10 8BB

T: +44 (0)1491 838800

F: +44 (0)1491 692424

UKCEH is a not-for-profit company limited by guarantee with charitable status. It serves as a strategic delivery partner for the Natural Environment Research Council, part of UK Research and Innovation.

The name and contact details of our data protection representative

The UKCEH Data Protection Officer is Quentin Tucker.

The lawful bases by which we may collect and use personal data

This section of the privacy notice provides information on: the purpose of the data processing; the lawful basis for the processing; further information where the lawful basis is legitimate interests for the processing; the categories of personal data obtained (if the personal data is not obtained from the individual it relates to).

We use the following lawful grounds for processing personal information to support our work when we carry out processing in pursuit of our purposes laid out in Article 93 of the Higher Education and Research Act 2017:

  • Public task: the processing is necessary for us to perform a task in the public interest or for our official functions, and the task or function has a clear basis in law
  • Legitimate interests: the reason for the processing is clearly defined, is necessary, is reasonable and has minimal privacy impact
  • Consent: cases in which you provide us with personal information in order to receive a service such as downloading data or subscribing to our news mailing list.

The personal data we may collect from you

When you communicate with UKEOF, visit our website or use our services, we may collect and process your personal information, as described in this section.

When you visit our website

Our website is

When you use our website we may collect the following information about you:

  • The IP address used to connect your computer to the Internet
  • Your time zone setting
  • Your Internet provider
  • The full Uniform Resource Locators (URLs, i.e. web page addresses) of pages you visit
  • Files you download
  • Page response times
  • Length of visits to pages
  • Page interaction information (such as clicks, downloads, web form submissions).

This information is logged by Google Analytics, a service we use solely to help us understand visits made to our websites and to help us improve our websites. We will use this information to provide the best possible service to our web users. It allows us to administer our site, including our efforts to keep it safe and secure, and to carry out internal operations including troubleshooting, data analysis, testing, and statistical research. This means we can improve our websites to ensure that content is presented in the most effective manner for you. Further information about Google Analytics is provided below in the ‘Cookies’ section. The lawful basis by which this information is collected and used is legitimate interest.

Where you are asked to complete a form on our website in order to obtain a service or product or to create a user account, you may be asked for details including your name, address, email address, telephone number, and organisation. The details you provide will be held by UKCEH for the purpose(s) described at the point of collection. The lawful basis by which this information is collected and used is consent.

Cookies: Our website uses cookies to distinguish you from other users of our website. This helps us to provide you with a good experience when you browse our website and also allows us to improve our site. For detailed information on the cookies we use and the purposes for which we use them, see the cookies notice below.

Links: Our site contains links to other websites. If you follow a link to any of these websites, please note that these websites and any services that may be accessible through them have their own privacy notices and that we do not accept any responsibility or liability for these policies or for any personal data that may be collected through these websites or services. Please check these policies before you submit any personal data to these websites or use these services.

When you subscribe to our e-news service (UKEOF newsletter)

Our e-news service is provided as a way to inform people by email about UKEOF and related activities. In order to provide this service to you, the minimum information we collect is your email. Detailed privacy information is provided on the sign-up form. The lawful basis by which this information is collected and used is consent.

You will be advised as to how you can withdraw your consent when subscribing and when you receive a bulk email via the mailing list.

Our mailing list provider is Mailchimp. There is more information about Mailchimp in the next section.

When you contact us

When you get in touch with us by email, phone, fax or in writing, we may need to store the personal information your provide, such as your name, email address, postal address and phone number. This enables us to contact you, for example to help answer an enquiry. For example, when you send us an email, this will be stored on our email server. Such contact information will only be disclosed to others (e.g. by forwarding your email) where that is necessary to help you with your request. The lawful basis by which this information is collected and used is consent.

When we provide you with a website user account

A limited number of individuals may be given access to the website in order to add and maintain content. In these circumstances it will be necessary to store your name and email address in the website's user management database, in order to provide you with a user account. The lawful basis by which this information is collected and used is public task.

Personal data relating to members of the UKEOF Management Group and Working Groups

We store a limited amount of information about individual members of the UKEOF Management Group and Working Groups, sufficient for the effective operation of these groups. The information we hold includes name, email address, affiliation and, in some cases, phone number. In a few cases we may record the contact details of Personal Assistants and deputies. These data are stored in a password-protected spreadsheet that is accessed only by members of the UKEOF secretariat. In addition, the names and affiliations of group members are listed on our website. The lawful basis by which this information is processed is public task.

The details of transfers of personal data to third parties or organisations outside the UK and EEA

We will inform you of circumstances in which we may need to share your data with third parties, i.e. beyond UKCEH. Unless otherwise indicated, your information is processed in the UK and European Economic Area (EEA). In those instances where your information is being processed outside of the UK or EEA, we work with our partners to do all we can to ensure your personal data is processed in line with the data protection requirements of GDPR.

The UKEOF website and the UKEOF catalogue are hosted by UKCEH in the UK.

Mailchimp (based in the USA) is currently the data processor for our e-news mailing list. Mailchimp is certified by the EU-US Privacy Shield. You can find Mailchimp’s privacy information at their website.

The retention periods for the personal data

Personal data retention is guided by the UKRI retention schedule. Science Research project records may be kept for 10 and 20 years after the project is completed or in exceptional circumstances will be retained permanently.

The rights available to individuals in respect of the processing

The GDPR provides the following rights for individuals:

  • The right to be informed
  • The right of access
  • The right to rectification
  • The right to erasure
  • The right to restrict processing
  • The right to data portability
  • The right to object
  • Rights in relation to automated decision making and profiling.

For further details on the rights of individuals please visit the ICO guide to GDPR.

The right to withdraw consent (if applicable)

Where your personal data is processed using consent as the lawful basis, you have the right to withdraw consent at any time. You will be informed about the ways you can withdraw your consent.

The right to lodge a complaint with a supervisory authority

Initially please raise your concern with the UKEOF secretariat team at UKCEH via email ( or telephone (+44 (0)1524 595800 - please ask for Andrew Sier or Don Monteith). Any continuing concerns you may have can be raised with the UKCEH Data Protection Officer (contact details above).

If UKCEH has not resolved your information rights concern you can raise the matter with the Information Commissioner’s Office via live chat or by phoning 0303 123 1113.

Provision of Privacy Information

We provide privacy information in a variety of ways including providing individuals with privacy information at the time we collect personal data from them or notifying individuals at a later date. If we obtain personal data from a source other than the individual it relates to, we provide them with privacy information:

  • Within a reasonable of period of obtaining the personal data and no later than one month
  • If we plan to communicate with the individual, we will provide privacy information at the latest when the first communication takes place
  • If we plan to disclose the data to someone else, we will provide privacy information at the latest when the data is disclosed.

How we provide privacy Information

When providing our privacy information to individuals, we use a combination of appropriate techniques. We aim to provide privacy information in a way that is:

  • Concise
  • Transparent
  • Intelligible
  • Easily accessible; and
  • Uses clear and plain language.

Changes to privacy information

We regularly review and, where necessary, update our privacy information. If we plan to use personal data for a new purpose, we will update our privacy information and communicate the changes to individuals before starting any new processing.

Register of processing activities

  • UKCEH undertake an information audit to find out what personal data we hold and what we do with it
  • UKCEH put ourselves in the position of the people we’re collecting information about
  • UKCEH will carry out user testing to evaluate how effective our privacy information is.


[Last updated: 02 May 2018]


When we provide services, we want to make them easy, useful and reliable. Where services are delivered on the internet, this sometimes involves placing small amounts of information on your device, for example, computer or mobile phone. These include small files known as cookies. They cannot be used to identify you personally.

These pieces of information are used to improve services for you through, for example: enabling a service to recognise your device so you don't have to give the same information several times during one task; recognising that you may already have given a username and password so you don't need to do it for every web page requested; measuring how many people are using services, so they can be made easier to use and there's enough capacity to ensure they are fast.

You can manage these small files yourself and learn more about them through advice on


Our use of cookies

Here we describe – to the best of our knowledge – cookies which may be set on your computer when you visit this site or use some third-party plugins. Note that if you click a link or button which takes you to another site, additional cookies not described here may be set by that website.

Cookies associated with Google Analytics

This site uses the Google Analytics service. Google Analytics sets cookies to help us accurately estimate the number of visitors to the website and volumes of usage. This allows us to ensure that the service is available fast amd when you want it.

Name: __utma
Purpose: Used to distinguish users and sessions
Typical content: randomly generated number
Expires: 2 years from set/update

Name: __utmb
Purpose: Used to determine new sessions/visits
Typical content: randomly generated number
Expires: 30 minutes

Name: __utmc
Purpose: Only used in some instances of Google Analytics. Historically this cookie operated in conjunction with the __utmb cookie to determine whether a user was in a new session/visit
Typical content: randomly generated number
Expires: when user exits browser

Name: __utmz
Purpose: Stores the traffic source or campaign that explains how the user reached the site
Typical content: randomly generated number and info on how the site was reached (e.g. directly or via a link, organic search or paid search)
Expires: 6 months

Name: _ga
Typical content: randomly generated number used to distinguish users
Expires: 2 years

Name: _gat
Purpose: Used to throttle request rate
Expires: 10 minutes

Name: _gid
Purpose: Used to distinguish users
Expires: 24 hours

For further details on the cookies set by Google Analytics, please refer to the Google Code website.

Third party cookies

When we provide links to third party services we think you will find useful, they may place a cookie on your device to make their service easier to use. The third party services on this website are listed below, with links to their privacy policy where available:

  • Twitter
  • Wakelet
  • Scoop.It (note that we no longer actively use Scoop.It but there may still be links to their website from our website)

Other cookies that may be set when you use our site

Name: 1P_JAR
Typical content: random number. Used to gather website statistics, and track conversion rates
Expires: when user exits browser

Typical content: presumably a status flag signalling whether or not the user’s browser is accepting cookies
Expires: when user exits browser

Name: NID
Typical content: a unique ID Google uses to remember your preferences and other information, such as your preferred language (e.g. English), how many search results you wish to have shown per page (e.g. 10 or 20), and whether or not you wish to have Google’s SafeSearch filter turned on.
Expires: when user exits browser

Name: OTZ
Purpose: Google uses cookies, like the PREF, NID, OTZ, and SID cookies, to help customize ads on Google properties, like Google Search. For example, Google use such cookies to remember your most recent searches, your previous interactions with an advertiser’s ads or search results, and your visits to an advertiser’s website. This helps Google to show you customised ads on Google. More information is available from Google. Note that ads are NOT displayed on the UKEOF website itself.

Cookies that are used when a user logs into this site

Some users have accounts and can log in to this website. When a user logs on with a username and password, this site – which uses the Plone Content Management System – uses a cookie so the user does not have to log in each time they visit a new page. To our knowledge, the following cookies are related to Plone’s user login function:

Name: _ac
Typical content: random number
Expires: when user exits browser