Page updated: 08 February 2018

Historic Environment Scotland has a membership scheme for visiting Historic Scotland properties.  This privacy notice details what information we store about our members and how we keep your personal details safe.  This privacy notice will hold the latest information regarding what we hold and what we use it for, and will be updated as and when required.

This privacy notice sets out the way we process and store your information.  We will always refer to this page when we ask you for your consent.  We will keep this page updated to show you all the things we do with your personal information so that you can be confident when sharing your information with us that it will only be used for the purposes that we state here.

The Data Protection Act 1998

Under the Data Protection Act, we have a legal duty to protect any information we collect from you. We use leading technologies and encryption software to safeguard your data, and keep strict security standards to prevent any unauthorised access to it.

Information we hold

The personal information we hold includes:
Name, Address, Email, Phone number, details of any memberships purchased as gifts, a record of all correspondence from members, and communication preferences.  For people paying for a membership by Direct Debit, we also hold bank details.

Once the membership is processed, we do not store any credit or debit card information. 

How we collect personal information

We collect information about you in the following ways:
• When you join as a member
• When you are purchased a gift of membership by another person
• When you purchase a gift of membership
• When you create an online registration for our membership website
• When you send us an email

How we use personal information

Personal information provided to us will be used for the purposes outlined at the time of collection, or registration, in accordance with the preferences you express.

Personal data collected and processed by us may be used for the following purposes:
• Administer your membership
• Processing and fulfilment of your orders and services requested
• Claiming Gift Aid on membership, where applicable
• Statistical analysis
• Research/profiling (using only postcode data)
• Communication about membership such as, events and other activities, property closures and competitions

Personal data collected and processed will be used by relevant Historic Environment Scotland employees in connection with your membership.

Who we share information with

Under strictly controlled conditions data may also be shared with:
• Contractors/Suppliers – for Mailing House requirements, to identify demographic characteristics, collection of Direct Debit payments
• Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC) – for Gift Aid requirements
• Organisations - when required by law for the purpose of the prevention or detection of crime

When we allow access to your information, we will always have complete control of what contractors/supplier see, what they are allowed to do with it, and how long they can have access to it.  We do not sell or share your personal information with any other organisations.

You have control of how we communicate with you and you can update your communication options by contacting us at the address shown in ‘Updating and Amending your personal information’ section of this notice.

International data transfer

Personal information that is submitted to us will be transferred to, and stored at a destination outside the European Economic Area (EEA).  At present the personal data is being transferred, stored and processed in the United States of America. Different countries have different data protection laws, some of which provide more protection than others.  In these circumstances contractual safeguards are in place to comply with laws applicable to such transfers, as defined in the Data Protection Act 1998.

Scannable Membership Cards

We use barcodes on our membership cards to reduce waiting times to enter the properties.  We collect information on your visits and spend in our shops.  This data includes the places you have visited, the date that you went and the number of people who visited on your membership card. We use this information to understand visiting trends and to help tailor our communications to you to be more relevant.

Data Retention

We hold your information only for as long as necessary for the purpose for which we use it and any subsequent financial requirements.  Below are some examples of our data retention:

• Membership data – lapsed membership records are deleted after 8 years
• Mailing House data – data to fulfil your membership order is deleted after 1 month
• Donors of gift memberships – deleted after 8 years


Where we need your consent, we will ensure that you are as fully informed as possible at the time on what we do with your information, with whom it may be shared and how long we keep it.  This is in line with the requirements of the current Data Protection Act and other relevant legislation.

Accessing your personal data held by Historic Environment Scotland

You have the right to request, in writing, a copy of all the personal data we hold about you.  This is a ‘Subject Access Request’. 

Requests for access to personal data (other than those falling within routine business) should be addressed in writing or email to the Data Protection Officer, ideally using the HES Subject Access Request form which is available via the website or in hard copy on request. A fee of £10 will normally be payable.

HES aims to comply with requests for access to personal information as quickly as possible, but will ensure that it is provided within 40 calendar days as required in the Act unless there is a good reason for delay. In such cases, the reason for delay will be explained in writing to the data subject making the request.

Data Protection Officer
Historic Environment Scotland
Longmore House
Salisbury Place


Telephone: 0131 668 8600

Updating and amending your personal information

If, at any time, you wish to update or amend your personal data or preferences you can do so online via the Members Only section of our website, by emailing us at, calling 0131 668 8999 or writing to us at:
Historic Scotland Membership
Longmore House
Salisbury Place

There are some communications that need to happen regardless of your marketing preferences.  These would be deemed essential communications to fulfil your membership, such as your Direct Debit confirmation or renewal reminder.


Please visit our web page regarding our use of cookies.

Links to third party websites

This privacy notice applies solely to the personal data collected by Historic Scotland Membership and its data processors for Historic Environment Scotland and does not apply to third party websites and services that are not under our control.

We cannot be held responsible for the third party websites and we advise our users to read the privacy notices of other websites before registering any personal data.


We will ensure your data is held securely with password-protected access for a limited number of staff to process your requirements, orders and answer your enquiries.