Charging policy

Our charges are thoughtfully set to ensure we continue to provide services now and in the future for the benefit of our environment.

What we charge for

Voluntary donations

We waive charges in some cases, for example, for local groups or students. However, we invite voluntary donations to cover the time spent collating data (starting at £30 for a simple data search). These donations help us sustain our services.

Why we charge for data searches and other services

We are committed to keeping our charges as low as possible. However, it’s essential to recognise that managing a database and providing data services involves significant time and effort.

We do not charge for the raw data itself. We charge for the time required to manage, process and extract the data, and to produce presentable results.

Both volunteers and paid staff work diligently to ensure that the information we hold is of high quality, accurate and up-to-date.

How we fund our work

We are a non-profit organisation. Our income sustains the services we provide to the local recording community, who share their data with us, so we can share it with you!

Our funding sources contribute to managing our database, resulting in economies of scale for everyone:

  • funding partners: 40%
  • data searches and licences: 40% (equivalent to about 0.075% contribution per data search)
  • projects: 20%

Private sector organisations, individuals and community groups contribute at the point of use when they request a data search.

Funding partners

Our funding partners (local authorities and the Environment Agency) contribute towards the cost of collating and managing our database through annual funding agreements.

Environment Agency

The Environment Agency contributes a varying amount each year, depending on available funding and their required deliverables. We charge them the standard rate for data licences. Additionally, they benefit from a partner rate of £340 per day for any additional deliverables.

Local authorities

We determine local authority contributions based on two key factors:

  1. Geographic area: Local authorities with a larger area are likely to have more data available, so they benefit more from our services. 
  2. Population size: Local authorities with a higher population are likely to have more pressure for competing land uses. They may have more potential conflicts between development and the natural environment, so they need our services more.

We charge local authorities at a rate of £340 per day for additional work