East Surrey Family History Society

Data Privacy Policy - Protecting your personal data

This Privacy Policy describes how we collect and process your personal data, how we use it and keep it safe. The Policy also sets out what choices you have about your personal data.

Who we are

The Society is a Registered Charity in the United Kingdom (No. 286659) and exists to help members and others to research their family history. The Society welcomes as members anyone living in Surrey who wish to belong to a local society and those with a research interest in Surrey, irrespective of their address.

In this privacy policy, references to “we” “us” or “the Society” means East Surrey Family History Society (ESFHS). “Members” means those who are members of the East Surrey Family History Society.

For the purposes of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) the Data Controller is the East Surrey Family History Society and the Data Protection Officer is a nominated Trustee of the Society.

What personal data of Members do we hold?

The Society collects and stores your Name, Postal Address, and if you have provided them, Telephone number and Email address. You gave this information when you joined the Society and you may have provided updated or additional details subsequently. The Society generates a Membership Number for you. This is also your personal data.

The Society stores this data in paper and/or digital formats.

What do we use this information for?

The Society collects, processes and stores your Personal Information in order to give you the benefits of membership of the Society and, in particular, processes your personal data to provide the following services:

• Used to identify you as a member of ESFHS
• To send you a hard copy of the Journal
• Printed in the Journal when you become a Member and if you amend your contact details, having given us permission to do this in the first place
• Used as part of access permission to the Members’ Area of the website
• Used as part of identification to report and collect Gift Aid from HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) if you have signed a Gift Aid form.

Postal address
• To assist in identifying you as a member of ESFHS
• Used as part of identification to report and collect Gift Aid from HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) if you have signed a Gift Aid form
• To send you a hard copy of the Journal

Membership Number
• Unique number allocated to you to identify you as a member of ESFHS
• Used as part of access permission to the Members’ Area of the website

Email address
(if supplied)
• To send you the Journal in electronic form if so requested
• Used as part of access permission to the Members’ Area of the website
• To send you the digital newsletter if so requested
• To send you notifications about meetings in your area
• To provide you with information that we think might be of interest to you
• Printed in the Journal when joining the Society so that other members can contact you
• To enable other members of the Society to contact you if you have submitted your Surname Interests to the Directory of Members’ Interests and agree to be contacted

The provision of the Journal and access to the Members’ Area of the website are integral parts of your membership and part of the agreement between you and the Society when you join or renew your membership.

Other activities, such as provision of the digital newsletter, email notifications about meetings or circulation of Surname Interests etc. are reasons to process your data but you have full control over whether we do and so we seek your consent for each process we perform.

You may withdraw consent for any or all of this processing at any time. Further information about these processes is available from the Membership Secretary. Bear in mind that if you ask for all your Personal Information to be deleted we can no longer contact you in any way, including being able to invite you to renew your membership at the end of the year or sending you your Journal.

The Society has a legal obligation to process your Name and Address if you have signed a Gift Aid form. We must respond to enquiries from HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) about a Member, or former Member, on their Gift Aid status, including providing HMRC with the details they require.

Personal Information collected other than necessary for Membership

We may also collect and process Personal Information from you in certain circumstances:

• Any information you provide about yourself or other living individuals when you submit articles or requests for help for publication in the Journal. This information may be published in hard copy or electronic form, for example as an article in the Journal. You must provide the consent of any named living individual, whose Personal Information you provide before we can use the information.

• Any information you provide about yourself or other living individuals when you write to the Society, particularly with an enquiry about research. Your letter or email together with any reply from the Society may be retained and archived. We will consider any request to delete such correspondence.

• Information about dead people is not Personal Information under the law.

Information we collect from other sources

ESFHS collects records from various sources, usually from official publicly available record sources, including newspapers, as well as birth, death, and marriage records, which may contain Personal Information relating to you. The resulting records form part of the Society’s research collection, which is open to the public in order that they can research their own family.

Retention Period

We will retain this personal data and the consents you have given whilst you are a Member but will delete this information securely if you do not renew Membership in a reasonably timely manner, say within four months of the renewal date. If you resign from the Society before the end of your membership for the year, your details will be deleted immediately except those required for Gift Aid tax reporting.

Any correspondence between you and the Society will be kept and archived should it be needed for future reference. You may ask us to delete any such correspondence.

Any Personal Information that has been published in the Journal or the digital Newsletter will have been widely distributed and also archived by the Society so cannot be destroyed.

The Society has a legal obligation to provide Gift Aid status information for Members or past Members to HMRC. We will retain your Name and Address data if you have signed a Gift Aid form for as long as is necessary to meet this processing requirement.

Who do we share personal data with?

The Society shares your Name and Postal Address with our printers so they can post the Journal to Members. The printer receives the details about a month before the publication date of the Journal, is required to hold the details securely and not share them with anyone else, and to destroy the information after the Journal has been posted. The printers are subject to contractual obligations governing data security and confidentiality consistent with this Privacy Statement and applicable laws.

We share Member Name, Address and Email Address information with our designated Society Overseas Representatives – but only for those names and addresses relevant to that country. This is to assist with the collection of subscriptions and only impacts Members resident outside the UK; appropriate management and security controls are applied.

If you have given us your consent, we will share your personal contact details with fellow Members who have expressed an interest in any of the surname interests that you have submitted for inclusion in the Directory of Members’ Interests.

If you share details of your family history or Personal Information in any article submitted for publication in the Journal it will be seen by anyone reading the Journal.

If you have signed a Gift Aid form, we are obliged by law to share your name and postal address with HMRC for tax purposes.

We use a commercial company to host our website and your Personal Information in the form of Membership Number, Name and Email address (if you have supplied it) are used in order to validate your access to the Members’ Area of the website. The company are subject to contractual obligations governing data security and confidentiality consistent with this Privacy Policy and applicable laws.


We are committed to ensuring that your Personal Information is secure.
We have put in place physical, electronic and administrative procedures to safeguard and secure the information we collect. These include limiting access to the data to only those people with proper reason and authorisation for access, and prompt and secure destruction of personal data when it is no longer required.

Where your Personal Information is in digital form it is held on specific personal computers or storage hard drives that are protected with up to date security firewalls and password protected against unauthorised access. Any paper copies of documents that contain Personal Information, unless already published, are kept in locked cupboards with no unauthorised access.

We will share your Personal Information with our Printers so that the Journal can be delivered to you, subject to satisfactory security processes being evidenced and agreed.

We will not distribute your Personal Information to any other third parties unless we are required by law to do so, for instance in respect of a Member’s Gift Aid status to the tax authorities at HMRC.

We do not place Cookies on your computer when you visit our website, nor use any tracking technologies, nor do we send you marketing or share your data with any third party who does.

We do not collect any information about you when you visit our website or use social media.

Controlling your Personal Information – your Rights

You may request details of Personal Information which the Society holds about you. If you would like a copy of the information we hold for you, please email or write to us using the contact information below. We will only supply this to the postal address/email address we hold on file and we will respond within 30 days.

You may ask us to delete all Personal Information we hold about you (the ‘right to be forgotten’), in which case we will remove your personal data from all our processing apart from any we are required to retain by law.

If you believe that any information we are holding for you is incorrect or incomplete, please write or email us as soon as possible. We will promptly correct any information found to be incorrect.

The Society does not engage in direct marketing and does not share your name and contact details with any other party for this purpose.

You may object to any, all or part, of the processing we perform that uses your personal data. This may restrict what services we can provide to you.

Links to other websites

Our website, newsletter and Journal may include links to external websites not controlled by the Society. Whilst all reasonable care has been taken in selecting and providing any such links, you are advised to exercise caution before clicking any external links.

Changes to this Privacy Policy

The Society may change this Privacy Policy from time to time and may amend our processing of personal data. If we do, we will post any material changes on the Society’s website and in the next available issue of the Society’s Journal.

If you continue to access the website or use services available from the Society after those changes have come into effect, you will be deemed to have agreed to the revised policy.

How to complain

If you have any questions about this Privacy Policy, would like to exercise any of your statutory rights, or make a complaint, please write:

By email to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

By post to: ESFHS Membership Secretary
12 Church Lane Avenue

We hope that we can resolve any query or concern you raise about our use of your information. The General Data Protection Regulation also gives you right to lodge a complaint with the supervisory authority. In the UK that is the Information Commissioner who may be contacted at https://ico.org.uk/concerns/ or telephone +44 (0)303 123 1113.

This privacy policy was published in May 2018 and last updated on 6 May 2018.