Response sent: October 2011


Under the Freedom of Information Act I request confirmation you hold invoices and descriptions of goods and services for all transactions of the GPC in question and request sight of the invoices and descriptions of goods and services for the GPC and who paid for them.




I am pleased to inform you that The National Archives' GPC Policy and statements containing transactions for the two previous financial years are both currently available on our website I have copied the link below for your convenience.

You have requested sight of GPC invoices held at The National Archives. Invoices are not raised for GPC expenditure but we receive monthly statements from the issuing bank detailing transactions made relating to the GPC's held, the content of these statements can also be found at the above link. We have not provided copies of these statements, as we have already published this information on our website. Section 11(2) of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 states that it should be considered a reasonable practice to communicate this information to you by another means which we have done by providing you with the above link.

All GPC expenditure at The National Archives is subject to approval by line management and monitored centrally to ensure it is justified.  More information concerning the processes in place for the authorisation to use a GPC and our payment verification, monitoring and reconciliation processes is available in our GPC Policy, which can be found at the following link.

Some additional documentation is held locally amongst the various business areas of The National Archives relating to GPC transactions; such as receipts and delivery notes. Given that in 2010/2011 there were 6792 GPC transactions we estimate that the cost of locating and retrieving this information would significantly exceed £600. The National Archives is not obliged, by virtue of s.12 (1) of the Freedom of Information Act, to comply with a request where the appropriate limit of £600 would be exceeded.

At The National Archives 134 staff hold GPCs; these cards have been issued in line with The National Archives GPC policy where a business need has been identified for an individual to have access to a GPC. You have asked for the names of the cardholders at The National Archives; however this information is exempt under section 40 (Personal Data) of the Freedom of Information Act 2000, in that the provision of the information to yourself would contravene the first data protection principle of the Data Protection Act 1998 - that personal data must be processed fairly and lawfully. Release of names of officials at The National Archives who have not given express permission would be deemed to be unfair as there is no expectation that this information would be released. Additionally, further processing to attribute names to opinions or actions would be seen to breach the first data protection principle in that it would be neither fair nor meet a Schedule 2 condition. As such the names of officials are not being provided to you.