Data Protection

In addition to the data described in this policy, the BLS also holds data in connection with our database of lichen records. Please see our Data protection and the BLS database page for details of this.

Who we are

The British Lichen Society, registered charity 1194213, welcomes all who are interested in lichens, whether you are a complete beginner or someone with a life-time's experience of lichenology. Throughout the world, but with a special emphasis on the British Isles, our aims are:
  • to promote and advance the teaching and study of lichens
  • to encourage and actively support the conservation of lichens and their habitats
  • to raise public awareness of the beauty of lichens and of their importance as indicators of the health of our environment.

We work towards these aims through field meetings, workshops and recording projects. Our Bulletin is packed with information about lichens, lichenologists and events, and we also publish a highly regarded scientific journal, The Lichenologist.

The Royal Society of Biology is a registered charity (number 277981) and is incorporated by Royal Charter. The Royal Society of Biology is registered with the Information Commissioner's Office (number Z5761557) in the UK under the Data Protection Act 1998.

The Royal Society of Biology acts as service provider for the British Lichen Society and handles data on behalf of the British Lichen Society, including data related to membership and services provided in our online portal mySociety.

What we collect

The types of personal information we collect may include your title, first name, surname, gender, date of birth, your qualifications, home and work contact details (telephone, fax, street address, email address), credit card details or bank details, and your mailing address. We may also collect information relating to your employment, including where you are currently employed, your job title, areas of interest or expertise, and your job function if this is relevant to your membership.

How we handle your personal information

The British Lichen Society and the Royal Society of Biology respect the privacy of members and website users, and aim to act consistently with the Data Protection Act 2018 and the eight principles of data protection.

Generally, the British Lichen Society and the Royal Society of Biology collect personal information directly from you when you:

  • Deal with us in person, by telephone, letter, fax or email
  • Fill out and submit a membership application form
  • Submit any other information in connection with your application for membership or renewal of membership or the purchase of other services
  • Register for a publication subscription
  • Make an enquiry
  • Register to attend an event

Why we collect information

We collect personal data to administer our activities, events, publications or services.

Maintaining the accuracy of data

Members can correct or update personal data using their online mySociety account or by contacting us by emailing .

Payment and bank details

Any information provided by you in connection with a Direct Debit payment or transactions regarding your credit or debit card numbers, expiry date and billing or delivery address will be used by us to process the transaction.

Credit card details are not stored on our servers, but are securely stored by the payment provider employed by us for the processing of card payments.

Use and disclosure

The policy of the British Lichen Society and the Royal Society of Biology is not to disclose any personal information that we hold on you to any unrelated third party, except where you have given your express consent for us to do so or where required by law.

The British Lichen Society (or its committee members or representatives) may use your email address for the purpose of notifying you about products, services, events or activities of relevance to you. If you tell us that you do not wish us to use your personal information for a particular purpose we will not do so.

We also collect email addresses from people who subscribe to our email lists. If you do not want to receive email from us in the future please let us know by sending an email to .

Personal information collected on this website will be used only for the purpose stated (such as the processing of membership or grant applications) and such information will be held for as long as necessary to fulfil the stated purpose. Personal data collected during the process of membership application will be kept for a limited period in a secure database, for the purpose of lapsed membership campaigns.

The British Lichen Society (or its committee members or representatives) may, from time to time, email you with additional information considered to be relevant to your professional or scientific interests, but only to those who have given their agreement to receiving such communications.

Information that you supply to the British Lichen Society and/or the Royal Society of Biology through our website is held securely and strict security procedures are followed to prevent unauthorised access or use.

Information to improve our website

We also collect information automatically about your visit to this website. This information is used to help us follow browsing preferences on our website so that we can regularly improve it and enable more advanced features.

Cookies on our website

A cookie is a text-only string of information that a website transfers to the cookie folder of the browser on your computer's hard disk so that the website can remember who you are. The law relating to cookies changed on 26 May 2011. The new rules require that cookies can only be placed on computers where the user has given their consent.

Our website uses cookies for essential functions such as login and account management. We also use Google Analytics to monitor website usage and to make relevant improvements. If you do not want to be tracked by Google Analytics then please follow Google's opt-out instructions. More information about cookies and how to opt out of using them is available at .

Please note that you will not be able to login to our website without using cookies.

Access to personal information

You can seek access to the personal information we hold about you, by contacting us. You should include your name, address and telephone number. If the information we hold about you is inaccurate, incomplete or outdated, please inform us so that we can correct it.

Your consent to this policy

By using our websites, you consent to the collection and use of information by the British Lichen Society and the Royal Society of Biology as specified above. If we decide to change our privacy policy, we will gain consent where appropriate and post those changes on this page so that you are always aware of what information we collect and how we use it.

How to contact us

Data Protection Officer
The British Lichen Society
Charles Darwin House
12 Roger Street
020 3793 7852



Version 4. Issued 25 May 2018