Freedom of Information

As a public body, the MCA is required to comply with the Freedom of Information Act 2000. Read below to find out how to get in contact with the Agency with regards to any Freedom of Information request.

Freedom of Information Act Publication Scheme

The MCA’s Publication Scheme, which is subordinate to that of the Department for Transport, specifies the categories of information that the Agency publishes, explains how to obtain that information, and makes it clear whether a charge is made for providing that information.

The MCA will take reasonable steps to satisfy requests for the provision of published information in a non-standard format.

Published Information

AdvertisementsPublished information provided to the media in support of MCA sponsored campaigns:

Public Relations Branch,
Maritime & Coastguard Agency
Spring Place
105 Commercial Rd
SO15 1EG.

Annual Reports

Annual Report

Business Plan

Available via the Website

Annual Report & Accounts 2006-07

Hardcopies available from
EC Group Ltd
Europa Park
Magnet Road
RM20 4DN

Tel: 0845 6032431
Fax: 01375 484556


Annual Reports (cont..)

Framework Document

Customer surveys:
Coastguard satisfaction 2001&2002
Service standards 2002
Customer satisfaction Survey 2003
Seafarer certificate applicants
General Public Survey
Ship survey/Inspection

Hardcopies of framework document and customer surveys available from

Strategic Planning Team,
Maritime & Coastguard Agency ,
Spring Place,
105 Commercial Rd,
SO15 1EG.

Consultation PapersVariousConsultation Documents are placed on the website
FormsSeafarers DocumentationAvailable via the Website

External Guidance


M Notice
Costs :£

Guidance and Regulations on Website

Guidance & Regulations - M Notices

Alternatively, subscription service for Hardcopy M Notices, details from

EC Group Ltd
Europa Park
Magnet Road
RM20 4DN

Tel: 0845 6032431
Fax: 01375 484556


Internal guidelines, instructions and manuals

MCA public complaints procedure


Available via the Website - Complaints Procedure

Available via the Website - Infoline

Job AdvertisementsJob AdvertisementsAvailable via the Website
Press ReleasesPress Release, News and Events

Available via the Website

Or write to

Public Relations Branch,
Maritime & Coastguard Agency ,
Spring Place,
105 Commercial Rd,
SO15 1EG.

Statutory DirectionsMerchant Shipping Notices (MSN)Available via the Website
Internal Research Available via the website

Publicity material

Publicity leaflets, posters and booklets issued by the Agency are available from:

Mail Marketing (Scotland) Ltd,
Bloomsgrove Industrial Estate,
Norton Street,
Tel 0115 901 3336,
Fax 0115 901 3334

Requests for information not covered by the scheme

For information not covered by the Publicity Scheme you may make an access request under the provisions of:

  • Freedom of Information Act 2000
  • Environmental Information Regulations 1992 or
  • Code of Practice on Access to Government Information (from 1 January 2005 superseded by the Freedom of Information Act 2000

Requests may be addressed to

When making a request for information please provide sufficient detail to enable us to identify the information you require. Large or complex requests may attract a fee payable in advance of providing the information.

Comments and Complaints

Comments and complaints relating to the coverage or management of the Publication Scheme should be sent by email to

Data Protection

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency holds personal data relating to seafarers, ship owners and agents and members of the public who have voluntarily registered their vessels.

We know how important it is to protect your privacy and to comply with the Data Protection Act.  If we ask for your personal information we will:

  • let you know why we need it
  • only ask for what we need, and not collect excessive or irrelevant information
  • make sure nobody has access to it who shouldn’t
  • let you know if we share it with other organisations to give you better public services, and whether you can say no
  • only keep it for as long as we need to
  • not make it available for commercial use without your permission

In return, to help us keep your information reliable and up to date, we ask you to:

  • give us accurate information
  • tell us as soon as possible of any changes, such as new address

How to find out what personal information we hold about you

You can find out if we hold any personal information about you by making a “subject access request” under the Data Protection Act (DPA). If we do hold information about you we will:

  • give you a description of it
  • tell you why we are holding it
  • tell you who it could be disclosed to
  • and let you have a copy of the information in an intelligible form.  

To help us give you the information you want, we need you to tell us which part of our Agency you have been dealing with and why you believe we hold that information. The DPA allows us to charge £10 for responding to a subject access request. For details of how to make a request go to making a request.

When we share information

We are committed to providing the best and most efficient service to our customers. We may share personal information within our organisation or with other bodies where it would not be inconsistent with the purposes for which we collected it, and/or where we are required or permitted to do so by law.  

There are some cases where we can pass on your information without telling you, for example to prevent and detect crime or to produce anonymised statistics. In all cases - whether data is shared internally or externally – the MCA will act in accordance with the DPA and other relevant legislation.  

Our policy on data sharing is that all information passed to, received from or shared with other organizations shall be subject to an agreement with respect to: ownership, DPA responsibilities, FoIA responsibilities, maintenance of currency, period of validity, and destruction.

To find out more about who we share information with, go to shared data.

The training and guidance we give to our staff

All new staff are given training about data protection as part of their induction, and our intranet provides guidance on all aspects of information handling. By the end of 2008 we will be rolling out general awareness training to all our staff, and those in positions with formal responsibility for information handling will receive specific training.  

How to make a complaint

If you are unhappy with the way we have handled your personal information and wish to make a complaint, please write to:

Data Protection Officer
Maritime and Coastguard Agency
Bay 3/09
Spring Place
105 Commercial Road
SO15 1EG

We will deal with your complaint within 10 working days. For full details of our complaints procedure, go to complaints .