Submissions to the Smith Commission

FOI request reference: F0042573
Publication date: July 2015




I am an established poet and artist. I have exhibited internationally and am represented by [redacted].

I would like to have access to a selection of the private submissions to the Smith Commission, while, of course, maintaining their anonymity.

I am using submissions for an artwork, in association with the Scottish Poetry Library and National Library of Scotland’s Referendum collecting activity. This artwork is in the form of a ‘found poem’; in other words, I am using extracts from the letters and presenting them as a poem, without altering the content in any way. I am choosing fragments that represent all points of view, to create a serious work of reconciliation and reflection.

Can you advise me how I might gain access to the complete body of submissions? There seems no obvious reason as to why they would not be made public.

Kind regards,



Dear [redacted]

Freedom of Information Request: Reference F0042573

Thank you for your enquiry of 16 June 2015, in which you asked for access to a selection of the private submissions to the Smith Commission at The National Archives.

Your request has been handled under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA).

I can confirm that The National Archives holds some information relevant to your request and we are pleased to be able to provide with this information to you. Unfortunately, we are unable to provide you with all the information you have requested because we don’t hold it.

The National Archives holds the archived versions of the Smith Commission website now accessible:*/ This website contains samples of the submissions and correspondence you have requested.

The main records of the Smith Commission were placed with the Cabinet Office KIM team as sponsoring body. You may wish to contact them to request further submissions if the website does not provide you with enough material for your project.

Please note that published submissions to the Smith Commission which have been provided by other Crown bodies are covered by Crown Copyright and may be re-used under the Open Government License. However, submissions provided by third parties may not and you may be in breach of copyright if you do not obtain the permission of the rights owner(s) before re-using it. Please contact the Cabinet Office for further advice on the originators of this information. The Cabinet Office can be contacted at:

FOI Team
Cabinet Office
Room 3.32
1 Horse Guards Road

If you are dissatisfied with the handling of your request or the decision which has been reached, you have the right to ask for an internal review.  Internal review requests must be submitted within two months of the date of this response and should be addressed to:

Quality Manager
Public Services Development Unit
The National Archives

Please mark your complaint clearly.  You have the right to ask the Information Commissioner (ICO) to investigate any aspect of your complaint.  However, please note that the ICO is likely to expect internal complaints procedures to have been exhausted before beginning his investigation.

Yours sincerely,
FOI Request Manager
Freedom of Information Centre
Transfer and Access Department
The National Archives