Salmon catch data for rivers Nell, Oude, Barbreck and Add: EIR release

Information request and response under the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004

Information requested

The salmon and sea trout catch data for the following rivers from 1952 to present: Add, Barbreck, Nell and Oude.


I am releasing a copy of some of the information you requested.

Reported data that are out of scope of the request (catches not from within the named rivers) were redacted from the scans of the catch return forms, as were personal data, such as names and addresses.

An exception under regulation 11(2) of the EIRs (personal information) applies to some of the information requested because it is personal data of a third party and disclosing it would contravene the data protection principles in Article 5(1) of the General Data Protection Regulation and in section 34(1) of the Data Protection Act 2018. This exception is not subject to the ‘public interest test’, so we are not required to consider if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exception.

Some of the information you have requested (data for the years 2017-2021) was published as part of the Official Statistics and is available from:

Under regulation 6(1)(b) of the EIRs, we do not have to give you information which is already publicly available and easily accessible to you in another form or format. If, however, you do not have internet access to obtain this information from the website(s) listed, then please contact me again and I will send you a paper copy.

While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance the Scottish Government does not have some of the information you have requested. Under the terms of the exception at regulation 10(4)(a) of the EIRs (information not held), the Scottish Government is not required to provide information which it does not have. The reasons we do not hold the information are:

1. Prior to 2016, fishery owners could report catches from different rivers and/or stretches of coastline from within the same District on one form and we cannot separate catches to the level of individual rivers where this has occurred;

2. Data from prior to 1986 are not held at form level in our electronic database. For the years 1952- 1985, we have provided copies of individual catch return forms where we have them and where we are able to relate the catches to a specific river (as explained in (a) above).

This exception is subject to the 'public interest test'. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exception. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exception. While we recognise that there may be some public interest in information about salmon catches, clearly we cannot provide information which we do not hold.

Due to the size of the files we are unable to upload the documents referred to above. If you wish to consider, please contact us at the address below and we will be happy to provide.

About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at


Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road

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