Privacy Policy

Privacy Policy – Sussex Ornithological Society (SOS)

This privacy policy explains how we use any personal information we collect when you visit our website, submit bird sightings to the Society using the online submissions form, or if you join the Society as a Member.

Using the SOS website

Website usage information is collected using cookies. Cookies are text files placed on your computer to collect standard internet log information and visitor behaviour information. This information is used to track visitor use of the website and to compile statistical reports on website activity. For further information visit or You can set your browser not to accept cookies and the above websites tell you how to remove cookies from your browser, however in a few cases some of our website features may not function as a result.

Submitting Bird Sightings

SOS receives bird records from a number of sources, including on our website (through the sightings page), records provided directly by individuals to the County Recorder, bird surveys organised by SOS, and from third parties such as the BTO, SWT, RSPB and other bodies. Note that records submitted only via the website sighting page are usually not transferred to the SOS database, but they may be if of special note.

It adds value to the record to include the name and contact details of the observer as well as the date and place of recording and this information will generally be retained as part of the record to enable queries to be made at a later date. This also means that a record you provide shows where you were on a particular date.

All non-confidential bird records are shared with Sussex Biodiversity Records Centre, but your name is not attached to these records, nor is it provided when records are shared with Ecologists or other enquirers requesting bird records for conservation or planning matters.

Becoming an SOS Member

We collect your name, address, contact telephone numbers and email address so that we can send you the Sussex Bird Report, Members’ Newsletter, and to communicate with you about your membership. However, we do not contact our members for any marketing purposes. If you complete a Standing Order mandate, this information will be passed to your bank.
Members’ details are held by Officers of the Society, who may need to contact you in relation to your membership. Your name and address are provided to our printers so that they can mail your copy of the Sussex Bird Report to you. Other than for these purposes, we will never share your data with third parties.

We keep your personal data for as long as your membership with SOS is active and will retain a record of your name, address and period of membership thereafter, for any queries relating to previous periods of membership.

Access to your information and correction

You have the right to request a copy of the information that we hold about you. If you would like a copy of some or all of your personal information, please email or write to us at the following address. Val Bentley, Lanacre, Blackgate Lane, Henfield BN5 9HA

You may ask us to correct or remove information you think is inaccurate.

Other websites

This privacy policy only applies to the SOS website. When you link to other websites you should read their own privacy policies.

Security of your data

Membership data is password protected and accessible only to the Membership Secretary, those Officers who deal with membership matters, and to printers who need address details for circulation of membership publications.

Bird records are held on a database with limited access to those Officers who process data on behalf of the Society.

Any data breach will be notified to the Information Commissioner within 72 hours as required, and where it is considered that the breach may affect your rights and freedoms, you will be notified.

Changes to our privacy policy

We keep our privacy policy under regular review and we will place any updates on this web page. This privacy policy was last updated on 6 September 2018.

Before undertaking any future projects that may impact upon the nature of personal data being collected and processed, a privacy impact will be undertaken, and if necessary this policy will be reviewed and updated.

How to contact us

If you have any queries about your personal data at the SOS, please contact Val Bentley at or write to her at Lanacre, Blackgate Lane, Henfield, BN5 9HA