Privacy and cookies policy

We make it a high priority to ensure the security and confidentiality of any personal information you supply to us.

We make it a high priority to ensure the security and confidentiality of any personal information you supply to us. We do not collect personal information about you when you contact us or visit our website unless you expressly choose to provide it to us, so you can take advantage of a specific service; for example completing a form, signing up to receive email updates or making a booking online, by phone, post, or in person. We only collect and use the information required to fulfil the services provided to you.

Personal information

Who will be using my information?

Explore Essex as part of Essex County Council (ECC) handles information in accordance with Data Protection Regulations and the Freedom of Information Act 2000. Essex County Council (ECC) is the data controller for the purposes of the GDPR.

If you choose to submit your personal information to us, we will use that information to respond to your enquiry and will only pass your details to a third party if it is required by law or if that agency is directly relevant to fulfil your enquiry. If you enter into correspondence with us regarding a booking, enquiry or complaint, we may also keep details of that correspondence. By submitting your personal information to us you are consenting to us holding and processing this information.

The types of ‘personal’ information we collect from you may include;

Type of informationWhy we may collect this
Name(s)To identify your booking/enquiry
Telephone number(s)To communicate with you regarding your booking/enquiry
Billing and delivery addressesTo communicate with you regarding your booking/enquiry
Age / D.O.BTo allow us to identify adults/minors and to set prices accordingly
Email addressesTo communicate with you regarding your booking/enquiry
GenderTo allow us to plan appropriate staffing and facilities
Emergency contact detailsTo communicate with a nominated person in case of an emergency whilst you are visiting us

The types of ‘personal-sensitive’ information we collect from you may include;

Type of informationWhy we may collect this
DisabilityTo help us plan relevant assistance for delivering a special activity need (SEN) to youor medical information
Dietary requirementsTo help us plan relevant assistance for delivering a service to you

Your Rights Under GDPR;

  • You can ask for access to the information we hold on you
  • You can ask to change information you think is inaccurate
  • You can ask to delete information we hold on you (right to be forgotten)
  • You can ask to limit what we use your personal data for
  • You can ask to have your information moved to another provider (data portability)

Who do we share your information with?

We use a range of organisations to either store personal information or help deliver our services to you. Where we have these arrangements there is always an agreement in place to make sure that the organisation complies with data protection law. We’ll often complete a privacy impact assessment (PIA) before we share personal information to make sure we protect your privacy and comply with the law.

Sometimes we have a legal duty to provide personal information to other organisations. This is often because we need to give that data to courts, including if we take a child into care; if the court orders that we provide the information; and if someone is taken into care under mental health law.

We may also share your personal information when we feel there’s a good reason that’s more important than protecting your privacy. This doesn’t happen often, but we may share your information: in order to find and stop crime and fraud; or if there are serious risks to the public, our staff or to other professionals; to protect a child; or to protect adults who are thought to be at risk, for example if they are frail, confused or cannot understand what is happening to them.

For all of these reasons, the risk must be serious before we can override your right to privacy.

If we’re worried about your physical safety or feel we need to take action to protect you from being harmed in other ways, we’ll discuss this with you and, if possible, get your permission to tell others about your situation before doing so. We may still share your information if we believe the risk to others is serious enough to do so.

There may also be rare occasions when the risk to others is so great that we need to share information straight away. If this is the case, we’ll make sure that we record what information we share and our reasons for doing so.

We’ll let you know what we’ve done and why if we think it is safe to do so.

How do we protect your information?

We’ll do what we can to make sure we hold records about you (on paper and electronically) in a secure way, and we’ll only make them available to those who have a right to see them. Examples of our security include:

Encryption, meaning that information is hidden so that it cannot be read without special knowledge (such as a password). This is done with a secret code or what’s called a ‘cypher’. The hidden information is said to then be ‘encrypted’

Using pseudonyms, meaning that we’ll use a different name so we can hide parts of your personal information from view. This means that someone outside of the Council could work on your information for us without ever knowing it was yours

Controlling access to systems and networks allows us to stop people who are not allowed to view your personal information from getting access to it

Training for our staff allows us to make them aware of how to handle information and how and when to report when something goes wrong

Regular testing of our technology and ways of working including keeping up to date on the latest security updates (commonly called patches) You can find more details of our Information Security expectations on our online policy.

Where in the world is your information?

The majority of personal information is stored on systems in the UK. But there are some occasions where your information may leave the UK either in order to get to another organisation or if it’s stored in a system outside of the EU.

We have additional protections on your information if it leaves the UK ranging from secure ways of transferring data to ensuring we have a robust contract in place with that third party.

We’ll take all practical steps to make sure your personal information is not sent to a country that is not seen as ‘safe’ either by the UK or EU Governments. If we need to send your information to an ‘unsafe’ location we’ll always seek advice from the Information Commissioner first.

How long do we keep your personal information?

In general we try to keep your information for the least amount of time possible/practicable. There’s often a legal reason for keeping your personal information for a set period of time, we try to include all of these in our retention schedule. For each service the schedule lists how long your information may be kept for. This ranges from months for some records to decades for more sensitive records.

Where can I get advice?

If you have any worries or questions about how your personal information is handled please contact our Data Protection Officer at or by calling 03457 430430.

For independent advice about data protection, privacy and data sharing issues, you can contact the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) at:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane

Tel: 0303 123 1113 (local rate) or 01625 545 745 if you prefer to use a national rate number.

Alternatively, visit or email


To make this website simpler, we sometimes place small data files on your computer. These are known as cookies. Most big websites do this too.

They improve things by:

  • Remembering settings, so you don't have to keep re-entering them whenever you visit a new page • Remembering information you've given (e.g. your postcode) so you don't need to keep entering it.
  • Measuring how you use the website so we can make sure it meets your needs.
  • By using our website, you agree that we can place these types of cookies on your device.

We may use cookies on our main website that collect information about your browsing habits in order to make advertising relevant to you and your interests. Our cookies aren't used to identify you personally. They're just here to make the site work better for you. Indeed, you can manage and/or delete these small files as you wish.

To learn more about cookies and how to manage them, visit or watch a video about cookies.

Disabling cookies

You can stop cookies being downloaded on to your computer or other device by selecting the appropriate settings on your browser. If you do this, however, you may not be able to use the full functionality of this website.

There is more information about how to delete or stop using cookies on

Measuring website usage (Google Analytics)

We use Google Analytics to collect information about how people use this site. We do this to make sure it's meeting its users' needs and to understand how we could do it better.

Google Analytics stores information about what pages you visit, how long you are on the site, how you got here and what you click on. We do not collect or store your personal information (e.g. your name or address) so this information cannot be used to identify who you are.

We also collect information on the number of times particular search terms are used and the number of failed searches. We use this information to improve access to the site and to identify gaps in the information content so we can plan appropriate expansion of the system.

Unless the law allows us to, we do not:

  • Share any of the information we collect about you with others
  • Use this information to identify individuals.

If you wish, you can also opt out of being tracked by Google Analytics.

IP Addresses

We may collect information about your computer, including (where available) your IP address, operating system and browser type, for system administration and to report aggregate information to our partners. This is statistical data about our users’ browsing actions and patterns which does not identify any individual.

Links to other sites

The Explore Essex website links you to other websites. We do not have any control over the content, security policy or privacy policy of these sites.

Visit the following links for more information about Privacy Law, our obligations and your Rights:

The ICO Guide to the General Data Protection