There was a reception to mark the opening of the Much Wenlock Festival this evening. From Wilmore Street it was possible to see folk enjoying drinks and nibbles on the church green. All well and good, and the town mayor was seen wearing his chain of office and greeting the guests. It wasn’t surprising to find a post from the Town Council on Facebook this evening.
What is amazing is that the invitation to this Pimm’s party has been photographed. It clearly shows the contact details of the hostess – her private email address, home phone number and mobile phone number.
We have no intention of replicating this breach of trust and discourtesy by invited guests. We’ve therefore obliterated the details.
It’s just plain bad manners to share a private invitation in this way. But far, far, worse in this modern age of data protection, millions (billions?) of people can see this on Facebook. Now, if it was a private citizen perpetrating this deed, it might almost be forgivable, due to ignorance. But Much Wenlock Town Council stated in the draft minutes of its April Finance Committee meeting that it is aware of its duty to comply with the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) as from 25 May 2018.
According to the Town Council’s Data Protection Policy, adopted 5 September 2013, the Town Clerk is the Council’s Data Controller. And the Town Clerk is responsible for the Town Council’s social media activities. Without a lot of research, it’s not clear if this is a breach of GDPR, which attracts enormous fines, but it’s certainly a very unsatisfactory state of affairs. If she’s advising the Town Council on this topic, it’s going to be a bumpy ride.
We’d intended to suspend activity on this website for the time being, but this cannot be allowed to pass without comment. This website has no connection with Much Wenlock Town Council or its councillors.