FOI request detail

Central and Bakerloo line Emma Clarke announcements

Request ID: FOI-2358-2223
Date published: 04 January 2023

You asked

To Transport for London, May I please request a digital or physical copy of the audio files recorded by Emma Clarke used on the Central and Bakerloo Lines. These would be only for my personal use and not shared anywhere.

We answered

TfL Ref: 2358-2223

Thank you for your request received by Transport for London (TfL) on18 December 2022 asking for information about our announcements.

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

We have given out the on train announcements for the Jubilee, Northern and Piccadilly lines previously, as our commercial agreement allows us to do this, however, with regards to the London Underground station announcements and the on train announcements for the other lines, we are not obliged to supply these audio files as the information is subject to a statutory exemption to the right of access to information under section 43(2).

In this instance section 43(2) has been applied as disclosure of the information requested would be likely to prejudice the commercial interests of TfL and/or the company used to provide the recordings. The recordings in question were provided to London Underground under a signed contracts which contained explicit conditions concerning disclosure and distribution.

These contracts specify that the recordings are solely to be used for the purpose for which they were created and for broadcast on the London Underground network only. If TfL were to disclose these recordings in response to an FOI request, it would constitute an actionable breach of contract and would be likely to result in a valid legal claim against London Underground or the license to use the recordings being withdrawn, which would impose additional, unnecessary, costs. TfL wishes to protect its commercial interests and ability to participate in future commercial activity. The disclosure of this information would be to the detriment of present and future business activities for both parties.

The use of this exemption is subject to an assessment of the public interest in relation to the disclosure of the information concerned. TfL recognises the need for openness and transparency within public authorities and the degree of public interest concerning London transport announcements. However, in this instance this is outweighed by the damage that would be done to TfL’s ability to use these recordings and any future contractual negotiations that may take place regarding the London Underground announcements.

If you want access to the audio announcements we are able to disclose then please contact us again with a personal email address and we will process that request.

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

Yours sincerely

Sara Thomas
FOI Case Management Team
General Counsel
Transport for London

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