Freedom of Information releases

Helensburgh and Lomond Area Committee

Helensburgh and Lomond Area Committee

Date received

16 November 2020

Date responded

15 December 2020

Information requested

Information relating to meetings between council officers, Scottish Enterprise and the Ministry of Defence.

The September meeting of Argyll and Bute Council’s Helensburgh and Lomond area committee included an agenda report on property, which stated: "Officers from the council and the MOD have been meeting regularly to develop an understanding of the property requirements of the MOD for both office and residential accommodation outwith their existing estate. Options to satisfy both the short and long term aspirations of the MOD are being investigated and this has extended to involve representatives from Scottish Enterprise as the project could form an important part of the Rural Growth Deal as part of the Covid-19 recovery plan.”

Please could you supply dates, agendas and minutes of the meetings referred to here, including the properties/sites under discussion, and any terms discussed for their transfers.


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Copies of relevant meeting information is provided to you now. 

Please note that an exemption has been applied throughout the released documents. A detailed description of why this exemption has been applied is as follows:

Section 38(1)(b) - personal information

The exemption contained in section 38(1)(b) of FOISA has been applied to some of the information you requested, and that information redacted.Section 38(1)(b) together with Article 5(1) of the GDPR creates an exemption from disclosure where the information requested constitutes the personal data of a third party and disclosure of that data would breach any of the data protection principles set out in the Data Protection Act 2018 (“DPA”). Article 5(1) states that “personal data shall be processed lawfully, fairly and in a transparent manner in relation to the data subject.”

As an absolute exemption, there is no need to consider the public interest in the application of this exemption. SE is satisfied that the information that has been withheld constitutes the ‘personal data’ of the individuals concerned, as defined in section 1(1) of the DPA 2018. SE has examined whether or not disclosure of the information you have requested, insofar as that is personal data, would breach the requirements of the first data protection principle.


In assessing whether release of the information would be fair, we have had regard to the Scottish Information Commissioner’s Exemption Briefing Series on the section 38 exemption, and to guidance produced by the UK Information Commissioner, who has overall responsibility for data protection issues throughout the UK. In line with that guidance, and in coming to the decision to withhold personal data on the basis that it would be unfair to release it, we have taken into consideration:

  • Any potential damage or distress which may be caused by disclosure of the information
  • The seniority of the individuals’ positions
  • Whether the information relates to the public or private life of the individual
  • And the expectations of the data subjects with regard to the release of the information

We are of the view that release of the information would be unfair and in breach of the first data protection principle, therefore making it unlawful. Given that the disclosure would be unfair, and therefore unlawful, release would not comply with the first data protection principle, and as such it is not necessary to go on to consider any of the conditions in schedules 2 or 3 of the DPA 2018, or other aspects of lawfulness.
The information must be withheld under section 38(1)(b) of FOISA, taken together with Article 5(1) of the GDPR.

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