Mostly this is names and addresses of parishoners and the information on the electoral roll. It may be stored on a computer or in card index or similar. However it is recorded it is subject to the Data Protection Act 1998. This page gives some information about the act and some links to where you can get further information.
The Data Protection Act 1998 (“the 1998 Act”) gave individuals the right to know what information is held about them and provides a frame work to ensure that personal information is handled properly. It also states that organisations need to uphold 8 principles of good information handling.
Notification to the Information Commissioners Office (ICO)
We can confirm that general Church administration is exempt from notification, however if the Church operates CCTV notification is required.
Also, if a clergyman records pastoral care notes electronically, they must notify the ICO
For details of the exemptions please refer to our on-line Notification Exemptions – self-assessment guide at http://www.ico.org.uk/Home/for_organisations/data_protection/notification/need_to_notify.aspx
Data Controllers must comply with the provisions of the 1998 Act even if they have decided that they are exempt from notification. The eight Data Protection Principles can be found at http://www.ico.org.uk/for_organisations/data_protection/the_guide.aspx
At this stage parishes are not subject to the Freedom of Information Act
For more information visit the information commissioner's website at www.ico.gov.uk
For specific information aimed at charities visit http://www.ico.gov.uk/for_organisations/sector_guides