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Department for Constitutional AffairsFreedom of information

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Home > People's rights > Freedom of Information> Your rights > FOI in detail > List of public authorities

List of public authorities


Who is subject to the Freedom of Information Act?


The majority of organisations covered by the FOI Act are listed in Schedule 1. Some are listed by name (e.g 'the House of Commons'), others are listed by a description (e.g 'any government department').

This is not a complete list - it only includes those organisations which are listed in Schedule 1. It does not include wholly publicly-owned companies which are subject to FOI by virtue of section 6 of the Act.

The list is updated monthly to reflect any changes to the Schedule.

How to search this list

Online guide to coverage


First try searching the list (see 'how to search this list' for some helpful tips). If you're still not sure whether an organisation is covered, try our online guide, which also sets out what happens if an organisation isn't covered and where to get more help.

Schedule 1 - Public Authorities


Part I - General (Central Government)
Part II - Local Government
Part III - The National Health Service
Part IV - Maintained Schools and other Educational Institutions
Part V - Police
Part VI - Other Public Bodies and Offices: England and Wales
Part VII - Other Public Bodies and Offices: Northern Ireland


Part I - General

  1. Any government department.
  2. The House of Commons.
  3. The House of Lords.
  4. The Northern Ireland Assembly.
  5. The National Assembly for Wales.
  6. The armed forces of the Crown, except-
    1. the special forces, and
    2. any unit or part of a unit which is for the time being required by the Secretary of State to assist the Government Communications Headquarters in the exercise of its functions.

Part II - Local Government: England and Wales

  1. A local authority within the meaning of the Local Government Act 1972, namely-
    1. in England, a county council, a London borough council, a district council or a parish council,
    2. in Wales, a county council, a county borough council or a community council.
  2. The Greater London Authority.
  3. The Common Council of the City of London, in respect of information held in its capacity as a local authority, police authority or port health authority.
  4. The Sub-Treasurer of the Inner Temple or the Under-Treasurer of the Middle Temple, in respect of information held in his capacity as a local authority.
  5. The Council of the Isles of Scilly.
  6. A parish meeting constituted under section 13 of the Local Government Act 1972.
  7. Any charter trustees constituted under section 246 of the Local Government Act 1972.
  8. A fire and rescue authority constituted by a scheme under section 2 of the Fire and Rescue Services Act 2004 or a scheme to which section 4 of that Act applies.
  9. A waste disposal authority established by virtue of an order under section 10(1) of the Local Government Act 1985.
  10. A port health authority constituted by an order under section 2 of the Public Health (Control of Disease) Act 1984.
  11. An internal drainage board which is continued in being by virtue of section 1 of the Land Drainage Act 1991.
  12. A joint authority established under Part IV of the Local Government Act 1985 (fire and rescue services and transport).
  13. The London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority.
  14. A joint fire authority established by virtue of an order under section 42(2) of the Local Government Act 1985 (reorganisation of functions).
  15. A body corporate established pursuant to an order under section 67 of the Local Government Act 1985 (transfer of functions to successors of residuary bodies, etc).
  16. A body corporate established pursuant to an order under section 22 of the Local Government Act 1992 (residuary bodies).
  17. The Broads Authority established by section 1 of the Norfolk and Suffolk Broads Act 1988.
  18. A joint committee constituted in accordance with section 102(1)(b) of the Local Government Act 1972.
  19. A joint board which is continued in being by virtue of section 263(1) of the Local Government Act 1972.
  20. A joint authority established under section 21 of the Local Government Act 1992.
  21. A Passenger Transport Executive for a passenger transport area within the meaning of Part II of the Transport Act 1968.
  22. Transport for London.
  23. The London Transport Users Committee.
  24. A joint board the constituent members of which consist of any of the public authorities described in paragraphs 8, 9, 10, 12, 15, 16, 20 to 31, 57 and 58.
  25. A National Park authority established by an order under section 63 of the Environment Act 1995.
  26. A joint planning board constituted for an area in Wales outside a National Park by an order under section 2(1B) of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990.
  27. The London Development Agency.

35A.  A local fisheries committee for a sea fisheries district established under section 1 of the Sea Fisheries Regulation Act 1966.

Part II - Local Government: Northern Ireland

  1. A district council within the meaning of the Local Government Act (Northern Ireland) 1972.

Part III - The National Health Service: England and Wales


36A.   A Strategic Health Authority established under section 8 of the National Health Service Act 1977.

37.    A Health Authority established under section 8 of the National Health Service Act 1977.

38.    A special health authority established under section 11 of the National Health Service Act 1977.

39.    A primary care trust established under section 16A of the National Health Service Act 1977.

39A.   A Local Health Board established under section 16BA of the National Health Service Act 1977.

40.    A National Health Service trust established under section 5 of the National Health Service and Community Care Act 1990.

40A.   An NHS foundation trust.

41.    A Community Health Council continued in existence by or established under section 20A of the National Health Service Act 1977.

41A.   A Patients' Forum established under section 15 of the National Health Service Reform and Health Care Professions Act 2002.

43A.    Any person providing primary medical services or primary dental services -

  1. in accordance with arrangements made under section 28C of the National Health Service Act 1977; or
  2. under a contract under section 28K or 28Q of that Act;

in respect of information relating to the provision of those services.

44.    Any person providing general medical services, [Endnote 2] general ophthalmic services or pharmaceutical services under Part II of the National Health Service Act 1977, in respect of information relating to the provision of those services.

45.    Any person providing personal medical services under arrangements made under section 28C of the National Health Service Act 1977, in respect of information relating to the provision of those services. [Endnote 3]

45A.   Any person providing local pharmaceutical services under -

  1. a pilot scheme established under section 28 of the Health and Social Care Act 2001; or
  2. an LPS scheme established under Schedule 8A to the National Health Service Act 1977 (c 49),

in respect of information relating to the provision of those services.

45B.    The Commission for Patient and Public Involvement in Health.

Part III - The National Health Service: Northern Ireland


46.    A Health and Social Services Board established under Article 16 of the Health and Personal Social Services (Northern Ireland) Order 1972.

47.    A Health and Social Services Council established under Article 4 of the Health and Personal Social Services (Northern Ireland) Order 1991.

48.    A Health and Social Services Trust established under Article 10 of the Health and Personal Social Services (Northern Ireland) Order 1991.

49.    A special agency established under Article 3 of the Health and Personal Social Services (Special Agencies) (Northern Ireland) Order 1990.

50.    The Northern Ireland Central Services Agency for the Health and Social Services established under Article 26 of the Health and Personal Social Services (Northern Ireland) Order 1972.

51.    Any person providing primary medical services, general dental services, general ophthalmic services or pharmaceutical services under Part VI of the Health and Personal Social Services (Northern Ireland) Order 1972, in respect of information relating to the provision of those services.

Part IV - Maintained Schools and Other Educational Institutions: England and Wales

  1. The governing body of-
    1. a maintained school, as defined by section 20(7) of the School Standards and Framework Act 1998, or
    2. a maintained nursery school, as defined by section 22(9) of that Act.
  2. (1) The governing body of-
    1. an institution within the further education sector,
    2. a university receiving financial support under section 65 of the Further and Higher Education Act 1992,
    3. an institution conducted by a higher education corporation,
    4. a designated institution for the purposes of Part II of the Further and Higher Education Act 1992 as defined by section 72(3) of that Act, or
    5. any college, school, hall or other institution of a university which falls within paragraph (b).
    (2) In sub-paragraph (1)-
    1. "governing body" is to be interpreted in accordance with subsection (1) of section 90 of the Further and Higher Education Act 1992 but without regard to subsection (2) of that section,
    2. in paragraph (a), the reference to an institution within the further education sector is to be construed in accordance with section 91(3) of the Further and Higher Education Act 1992,
    3. in paragraph (c), "higher education corporation" has the meaning given by section 90(1) of that Act, and
    4. in paragraph (e) "college" includes any institution in the nature of a college.

Part IV - Maintained Schools and Other Educational Institutions: Northern Ireland

  1. (1) The managers of-
    1. a controlled school, voluntary school or grant-maintained integrated school within the meaning of Article 2(2) of the Education and Libraries (Northern Ireland) Order 1986, or
    2. a pupil referral unit as defined by Article 87(1) of the Education (Northern Ireland) Order 1998.
    (2) In sub-paragraph (1) "managers" has the meaning given by Article 2(2) of the Education and Libraries (Northern Ireland) Order 1986.
  2. (1) The governing body of-
    1. a university receiving financial support under Article 30 of the Education and Libraries (Northern Ireland) Order 1993,
    2. a college of education in respect of which grants are paid under Article 66(2) or (3) of the Education and Libraries (Northern Ireland) Order 1986, or
    3. an institution of further education within the meaning of the Further Education (Northern Ireland) Order 1997.
    (2) In sub-paragraph (1) "governing body" has the meaning given by Article 30(3) of the Education and Libraries (Northern Ireland) Order 1993.
  3. Any person providing further education to whom grants, loans or other payments are made under Article 5(1)(b) of the Further Education (Northern Ireland) Order 1997.

Part V - Police: England and Wales

  1. A police authority established under section 3 of the Police Act 1996.
  2. The Metropolitan Police Authority established under section 5B of the Police Act 1996.
  3. A chief officer of police of a police force in England or Wales.

Part V - Police: Northern Ireland

  1. The Northern Ireland Policing Board.
  2. The Chief Constable of the Police Service of Northern Ireland.

Part V - Police: Miscellaneous

  1. The British Transport Police.
  2. The Ministry of Defence Police established by section 1 of the Ministry of Defence Police Act 1987.
    63A. The Civil Nuclear Police Authority
    63B. The chief constable of the Civil Nuclear Constabulary
  3. Any person who-
    1. by virtue of any enactment has the function of nominating individuals who may be appointed as special constables by justices of the peace, and
    2. is not a public authority by virtue of any other provision of this Act,
    in respect of information relating to the exercise by any person appointed on his nomination of the functions of a special constable.

Part VI - Other Public Bodies and Offices: General


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Part VII - Other Public Bodies and Offices: Northern Ireland


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Endnotes: (Part II)

  1. Repealed by the Licensing Act 2003. Not yet in force. Date in force to be appointed.

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Endnotes: (Part III)

  1. Words 'general medical services repealed in relation to England by the Health and Social Care Act 2003. The repeal in relation to Wales is not yet in force. Date in force to be appointed.

  2. Insofar as this provision relates to personal medical services in England, it was repealed by the Health and Social Care (Community Health and Standards) Act 2003. The repeal in relation to Wales is not yet in force. Date in force is to be appointed.

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Endnotes: (Part VI)

  1. Repealed by the Transport Act 2000. Not yet in force. Date in force to be appointed.

  2. Repealed by the Communications Act 2003. Not yet in force. Date in force to be appointed.

  3. Repealed by the Equality Act 2006. Not yet in force. Date in force to be appointed.
  4. Repealed by the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act 2006. Not yet in force. Date in force to be appointed.
  1. Both entries repealed by the Horserace Betting and Olympic Lottery Act 2004. Not yet in force. Date in force to be appointed.

  2. Repealed by the Communications Act 2003. Not yet in force. Date in force to be appointed.

  3. Repealed by the National Council for Education and Training in Wales (Transfer of Functions to the National Assembly for Wales and Abolition) Order 2005 (SI 2005/3238). Not yet in force. This repeal will come into force on 1 April 2006.

  4. Repealed by the Qualifications, Curriculum and Assessment Authority for Wales (Transfer of Functions to the National Assembly for Wales and Abolition) Order 2005 (SI 2005/3239). Not yet in force. This repeal will come into force on 1 April 2006.

  5. Repealed by the Communications Act 2003. Not yet in force. Date in force to be appointed.

  6. Repealed by the Railways Act 2005. Not yet in force. Date in force to be appointed.

  7. Repealed by the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act 2006. Entry will be replaced by "Inland Waterways Advisory Council". Not yet in force. Date in force to be appointed.

  8. Repealed by the National Lottery Act 2006. Not yet in force. Date in force to be appointed.

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Endnotes: (Part VII)

  1. Repealed by the Justice (Northern Ireland) Act 2002. Not yet in force. Date in force to be appointed.
  2. Repealed by the Constitutional Reform Act 2005. Not yet in force. Date in force to be appointed.

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