IWM, like all public authorities, is subject to the Freedom of Information Act, which came into force on 1 January 2005.
The Freedom of Information Act provides a general right of access to all types of recorded information held by public bodies. It also establishes obligations for disclosure, subject to a range of specific exemptions.
Anyone may request information from IWM, although that request must be in writing (by letter, email or fax). Those requesting information have two related rights:
- To be told whether the information exists
- To receive the information asked for, in the format specified wherever possible
IWM must provide the information within 20 working days, unless one of the exemptions to release outlined in the Act applies.
Further information about Freedom of Information can be found on the website of the Information Commissioner.
A guide to information about IWM that is already available
The Freedom of Information Act requires IWM to publish a guide to the information it makes available proactively. This is called a publication scheme. The information IWM makes available as a matter of course falls into several categories, stipulated by the Information Commissioner. All of this information can be found in the various sections of the About Us pages of this website, specifically within the sections covering Trustees, Staff, Finance and Procurement, Reports and Plans, and Policies.
The UK Government’s transparency agenda aims to provide the public with more information about the performance of services they use every day, and to help to drive modern, personalised and sustainable public services. In line with this, IWM publishes data on spending and salaries.
Information about IWM that is not already available: how to make a Freedom of Information request
If the information required is not already available on the website, a request for that information should be submitted to IWM.
Freedom of Information requests should be in writing (email, letter or fax). They should have a clear address for reply and be as specific as possible about the information required.
Some classes of information (such as personal data) may be exempt from disclosure under the terms of the Act. In these cases, IWM will explain the reasons for withholding the information to the applicant and provide details of the appeals procedure.
Requests should be addressed to:
The Museum Archive
Imperial War Museum
London SE1 6HZ
Fax: 020 7416 5216
Most information listed in the scheme can be downloaded free of charge from IWM’s website, or a single printed copy can be obtained from the specified contact. Charges for photocopying and postage and packing may apply for multiple printouts. Some information will only be available in printed hard copy. Applicants will be informed if a cost is involved when making a request for information.
Any information contained in the scheme is for personal study and research only and should not be reproduced. Please also see the copyright information on IWM’s website.
Complaints and appeals
If you are not satisfied with the response you have had from IWM, you may invoke IWM’s Freedom of Information appeals and complaints procedure. The first step is to seek an internal review of the decision by writing to the Director-General at Imperial War Museum, Lambeth Road, London SE1 6HZ.
If you are not satisfied with the review, you may seek an independent review from the Information Commissioner at Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire SK9 5AF, Tel: 01625 545700
The information outlined above covers all branches of the Imperial War Museum.
Churchill War Rooms
King Charles Street
020 7939 6961
The Queen's Walk
020 7940 6300
Trafford Wharf Road
0161 836 4000