Free Our Data: the blog

A Guardian Technology campaign for free public access to data about the UK and its citizens


A spoke in the wheels of Land Registry transaction fees to pay for Ordnance Survey?

An interesting debate about the prospect of redundancies at Land Registry on Wednesday brought Michael Wills, of the Ministry for Justice – who is also in charge of the (trading fund) Land Registry – to the chamber.

It’s a long debate, but here’s the nitty-gritty:

Transaction levels, which are the key factor for the Land Registry, will have fallen from 16.1 million in 2007-08 to a projected 10 million in 2009-10. The Land Registry receives no central funding because it is a trading fund; it depends on the fees that it receives for services rendered. It made a loss of £130 million in 2008-09 compared with a surplus of about £70 million in 2007-08.

Very interesting – and this comes against a backdrop where it’s being suggested that government is being charged too little for OS data (compared to the private sector); and where there have been suggestions (hi, Robert Barr) that we should have an excess added to LR transactions in order to fund OS.

I think this really needs to be costed. It would be interesting too to see how much Land Registry pays to OS…

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