Privacy and Cookies

This Privacy Notice explains in detail the types of personal data the Royal Forestry Society (RFS) may collect about you when you interact with us. It also explains how we will store and handle that data, and keep it safe.

We hope the following information will answer any questions you have but if not, please do get in touch with us.

The RFS is registered with the Information Commissioner, registration number ZA073424.

It’s likely that we will need to update this Privacy Notice from time to time. We will notify you of any significant changes, but you are welcome to come back and check it whenever you wish.

1.    Explaining the legal basis we rely on

The law on data protection sets out a number of different reasons that an organisation may collect and process your personal data including:

  • Consent:

     we can collect and process your personal data when for example you join the RFS as a member or buy a ticket to an RFS event. We will always make it clear what data is required for a particular service.

  • Contractual obligations:

     we need your personal data to comply with contractual obligations such as fulfilment of orders for goods and services you place with us.

  • Legitimate interest: 

    we require your data to pursue legitimately our interests in a way that might reasonably be expected as part of running a charity which does not materially impact on your rights, freedoms and interests. For example we will send you notice of events, publications, projects, products and services that we believe you may be interested in.

2.    When do we collect your personal data?

We collect your personal data:

  • When you join the RFS as a member
  • When you pay for RFS products and services, including renewing your membership
  • When you visit the members’ area of the RFS web site
  • When you engage with the RFS on social media
  • When you respond to online surveys we send you
  • When you phone, email or write to the RFS to make a request, comment or complaint

We will not contact you using automated telephone calls

3.    What sort of personal data do we collect?

We collect the following data:

  • If you are an RFS member we collect data on your name, address, email, telephone number, payment record, date of joining, membership interest.
  • If you attend an RFS event we collect data on the events you have attended, your feedback on the event, your dietary requirements, and payments.
  • If you attend an overseas study tour we may collect data on your passport number and expiry date.
  • If you have received an award or qualification from the RFS we will collect and hold relevant information.
  • We collect data on donations received, pledges made and Gift Aid status.
  • We collect data on your conversations, emails and letters with questions, comments, feedback or complaints about your interactions with the RFS.
  • Information gathered by the use of cookies on your web browser and details of your visits to our website (see below for further information).
  • Your social media username, if you interact with the RFS through those channels, to enable us to respond to your comments, questions and feedback.

4.    How and why we use your personal data?

We use your personal data for:

  • Administering your membership
  • Communicating with you about RFS training courses and events
  • Informing you about RFS products and services
  • Fundraising for the charitable work of the RFS
  • Fulfilment of orders for RFS goods and services
  • Administration of donations and legacies
  • RFS membership/stakeholder surveys
  • Sending communications required by law about changes to the services we provide you such as changes to the Privacy Notice

You are free to opt out of any or all these services at any time by contacting the RFS by email (  phone (01295 678588) or letter (The Hay Barns, Home Farm Drive, Upton, Banbury OX15 6HU).

5.    How we protect your personal data?

We know how much data security matters to people. With this in mind we treat your data with the utmost care and take all appropriate steps to protect it.

Access to your personal data is password protected and sensitive information (such as payment card details) is secured by encryption or destroyed. We regularly monitor our systems for possible vulnerabilities and attacks.

6.    How long do we keep your personal data?

  • Lapsed or resigned members: we will keep personal data of RFS members who have resigned their membership or whose membership has lapsed due to non-payment for seven years. If we have not had any contact with you during this period we will delete or anonymise your personal data.
  • If you buy products and services from the RFS will retain your personal data for five years to comply with our legal and contractual obligations.
  • We will retain specific personal data where we judge there to be a wider public interest heritage value.

7.    Who do we share your personal data with?

We will not sell your data to any third party; however, we may share it with trusted service providers in order to fulfil the required services to you. Where service providers are to undertake fulfilment services on our behalf, these activities are carried out under contract in compliance with current data protection legislation. The policy we apply to these organisations is:

  • We provide only the information they need to perform their specific services
  • They may only use your data for the exact purposes we specify in our contract with them
  • We work closely with them to ensure your privacy is respected and protected at all times
  • If we stop using their services, any personal data held by them is deleted

8.    What are your rights?

You have the right to request access to the personal data we hold about you, free of charge:

  • The correction of your personal data when incorrect, out of date or incomplete
  • That we stop using your personal data for direct marketing
  • That we stop any consent-based processing of your personal data after you withdraw that consent

You can contact us to request to exercise these rights at any time as follows


Tel: 01295 678588

Post: The Hay Barns, Home Farm Drive, Upton, Banbury OX15 6HU

If we choose not to action your request we will explain the reasons for our refusal.

Whenever you have given your consent for the RFS to collect and process your personal data you may withdraw your consent at any time. You can change your privacy settings at any time by emailing us ( or calling us (01295 678588) with the following information:

I am happy for my data to be used to:

Contact me about fundraising for the charitable work of the RFS                        YES/NO

Inform me about the work of the RFS and our partners                                       YES/NO

Contact me about training courses and events                                                     YES/NO

Contact me about RFS Membership/stakeholder surveys                                   YES/NO

Inform me about RFS products and services                                                       YES/NO

I am happy to be contacted via:

Post                                                                                                                        YES/NO

Email                                                                                                                      YES/NO

Telephone                                                                                                              YES/NO

Text Message                                                                                                        YES/NO

In cases where we are processing your personal data on the basis of our legitimate interest, you can ask us to stop for reasons connected to your individual situation.

We must then do so unless we believe we have a legitimate overriding reason to continue processing your personal data.

You have the right to stop the use of your personal data for direct marketing through all or any channel. We must always comply with your request.

If you have authorised a third party to submit a request on your behalf, we will ask them to prove they have your permission to act.

9.    What are cookies and how are they used?

A cookie is a piece of data about a website that is stored in your web browser. Cookies are often used to store choices about how you use the site to improve your user experience. The RFS website makes use of cookies in this way. They only give us information about the number of visitors to our site and how long people spend looking at our different web pages. We use this information to help measure the success of our online communications and the usage of our site, using tools such as Google Analytics. We do not collect or process any personal data from cookies or the tools that use them (e.g. Names of individuals or IP addresses).

Most browsers will allow you to control how cookies are handled, whether they are accepted and how long they are stored for. All browsers do this differently, but if you’re concerned about privacy and security then please have a look in the ‘help’ documentation for your particular browser.