FOI request detail

Journey Planner and accessibility

Request ID: FOI-0761-1718
Date published: 20 July 2017

You asked

TfL's notes of the meeting, available at , includes the following: "Information on lifts that aren’t working could be better communicated, through promoting UpDownLondon or using the TfLAccess Twitter feed" also "Accessibility information is too many layers down" As a result, the following action points were recorded. "Update message about lifts being out of service with information on TfL Taxi Policy. Support this with continuing work on making staff aware of the policy (Gerard)" "Look at how we better promote lift closures to our customers (Peter)" "Review how accessibility information is accessed with aim of simplifying" Please provide all recorded information that states or demonstrates precisely what actions Peter Fletcher took as a result of each and every one of those points. Please also provide all recorded information that states or demonstrates precisely what actions TFL took as a result of each and every one of those points. A couple of months ago, Peter Fletcher said: “There needs to be more data on that, more granular information around... Realtime information around lift closures. Unfortunately lifts close down sometimes, but if you're in the middle of a journey and you need that lift, you need to know as soon as possible that it is down. And staff also need to know as soon as possible, so if you need to speak to them, they can tell you, they can say no you can't go to that station, the lift's down at the minute, but we can take you on this journey instead.” It appears that Peter Fletcher has not instigated any changes on this issue since the meeting in September 2015. I am asking for all recorded information that demonstrates what Peter Fletcher has done since that meeting. Please remember that my email server is still configured to automatically bounce all emails sent from [email protected] or [email protected] and so responses to this FOI request that are sent from those addresses will not reach me. This is the only restriction and emails from anything else will not be automatically bounced. Please bear this in mind when responding to my request. Please also bear in mind that I behave with dogged determination in my FOI requests. I expect you to comply with your obligation to respond "promptly", and also most definitely with the secondary and subservient obligation to respond by the long-stop of 20 working days by which "promptly" is considered to have passed in all cases. Please also ensure you comply with the duty to offer advice and assistance as set out in S16 of the Freedom of Information Act: if you believe altering my request would be likely to result in your providing me with more comprehensive information on the subject, you are obliged to advise me of such.

We answered

TfL Ref: FOI-0761-1718


Thank you for your request received by Transport for London (TfL) on 27 June 2017 asking for information about meeting actions.


Your request has been considered in accordance with the requirements of the Freedom of Information and our information access policy. I can confirm we do hold the information you require.


However, to provide the information you have requested would exceed the ‘appropriate limit’ of £450 set by the Freedom of Information (Appropriate Limit and Fees) Regulations 2004.


Under section 12 of the FOI Act, we are not obliged to comply with a request if we estimate that the cost of determining whether we hold the information, locating and retrieving it and extracting it from other information would exceed the appropriate limit. This is calculated at £25 per hour for every hour spent on the activities described.


We have estimated that it would considerably exceed the appropriate limit to provide a response to this request. This is because we would need to manually inspect several thousand emails that are potentially covered by your request. You have asked for “all recorded information that states or demonstrates precisely what actions TFL took as a result of each and every one of those points”. The meeting you refer to took place in September 2015. In order for us to locate, extract and collate “all recorded information” that documents any work relating to the points discussed in the meeting would require us to review every email sent by any of the individuals involved since that date and then extract anything that relates to the points discussed at the meeting.


As an example, two of the action points you refer to were “Look at how we better promote lift closures to our customers” and “Review how accessibility information is accessed with aim of simplifying”. An email search using the keywords “lift” and “accessibility” was conducted on one employee involved in the meeting you refer to, and this search produced almost 20,000 hits. A ‘hit’ refers to an email found within our IT system that potentially fits within the scope of your request. Many of the hits are likely to be duplicates, due to emails being repeated within email chains, as well as emails being forwarded internally for discussion during this time period. Therefore the actual number of emails covered by your request will be a sub-set of these hits. However, locating those that are relevant would require us to manually review all of them to determine whether the email, or email chain, is relevant to your request and then we would need to extract and compile all of those that meet your request.


Conducting this process for such a large amount of emails would breach the cost limit. There would, of course, be further work involved in collating any information held by other employees but we have not gone on to consider this for the purposes of determining the cost exemption.


To help bring the cost of responding to your request within the £450 limit, you may wish to consider narrowing its scope so that we can more easily locate, retrieve and extract the information you are seeking. For example, you may wish to limit your request to a particular document, more specific keywords or a narrowed period of time.


Please be aware that we are also mindful of the fact that your request appears to be targeted towards a specific individual. As the cost limit would be exceeded we have not gone on to consider whether section 14 might be engaged for this request. However, having taken into account your correspondence with TfL we consider that we should draw your attention to the Information Commissioner’s guidance, which identifies the following criteria as indicators of potentially vexatious requests:


  • The tone or language of the requester’s correspondence goes beyond the level of criticism that a public authority or its employees should reasonably expect to receive.


  • For whatever reason, the requester is targeting their correspondence towards a particular employee or office holder against whom they have some personal enmity.


Please see the attached information sheet for details of your right to appeal.


Yours sincerely


Lee Hill

Senior FOI Case Officer


FOI Case Management Team

General Counsel

Transport for London

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