Privacy notice for Sustrans supporters

Last updated 21 September 2022

What information we collect about supporters

Personal information is collected directly from you when you interact with Sustrans. For example:

  • when making a donation
  • buying something from our shop
  • sending or receiving an email
  • making an enquiry
  • visiting our website
  • participating in an event
  • or when signing up for our newsletter.

Information may be collected in person, over the phone, through our website, our social media channels or from something you’ve posted to us.

The information we hold will typically include some of, or all of, your name, postal and email addresses, and your phone number and may include information like your bank details if you are supporting us financially.

We may also record if you tell us you’re a member of a group or club that supports us.

Sometimes we receive information about you from other sources (including public sources), this is explained in the ‘How we might use supporter information’ section.


How we might use supporter information

Processing donations and purchases

When you make a donation or other payment to Sustrans, we will use your contact details to process the payment and take any follow-up administrative action needed (for example, sending a thank you or letting you know a payment failed).

In these administrative circumstances, we may contact you by email, phone or by writing to you and these might be an exceptional use of your contact details, for instance, if you have opted out of marketing and fundraising.

If you tell us that we can claim Gift Aid on the donations you make to us, then we will also ask for your address and UK taxpayer status as this information is required by law.

You can read more about how Gift Aid works. This information is needed for us to fulfil our obligations under tax (sections 413 to 430 Income Tax Act 2007) and charity law. Information associated with Gift Aid declarations must be retained for seven years.

This information will be shared with HMRC for tax regulation purposes and may also be shared with the Fundraising Regulator and the Charity Commission in the event of an enquiry or investigation.

Responding to enquiries

If you contact us with a question, comment, compliment, or complaint then we will keep a record of this correspondence and any associated documents so that we have the information available in the event of a follow-up, dispute or investigation.

Sometimes it’s nice for us to publicly share the comments (particularly praise) which we receive, however, we won’t do this with yours unless we get your express permission first.

Notifying Supporters of changes to our practices

If we make significant changes to our practices which may affect you, we will use your contact details to inform you of the changes.

Requesting information if Supporters are taking part in our events

If you participate in an event that we have organised, we may ask you to provide information to make sure we can manage the event safely and efficiently.

We may also ask you for details of any accessibility needs which you may have so that we can ensure our event is inclusive, and in line with the provisions of the Equality Act 2010.

If you participate in an event organised by an external party or donate through a processor like JustGiving, then your information may be passed to us by the processor.

We would only use it for fundraising and marketing purposes if you have given your consent for this.

We may use your information to invite you to become involved with us in new ways, raise funds and grow our supporter base.

However, you can ask us to stop doing this at any time and we will honour your wishes accordingly.

Contact our Supporter Care Team by emailing


Fundraising and marketing

Fundraising and marketing materials that we might share with you include:

  • information about our work and projects and their impact
  • our fundraising appeals
  • events
  • online shop
  • and other ways you can become involved with us.

Where you have provided your postal address, email or telephone number we will send this information to you by these means unless you have asked us not to.

You can let us know at any time if you’d prefer to change how we share this information with you or stop it altogether.

Simply contact our Supporter Care Team at

If you receive our e-newsletters, you can also use the unsubscribe link to stop them.

We will keep your personal information for no longer than is necessary for the purposes for which it is processed (in accordance with our Data Protection and Privacy Policy).

If you ask us not to contact you, we will keep some basic information about you on our suppression list in order to avoid sending you unwanted materials in the future.


Targeting our communications and researching our supporters

We have a duty to make sure that we’re investing your donations wisely and that means doing some basic research and analysis to inform our decisions.

We want to send the most effective messages that we can in the most efficient ways possible.

In order to work out who to contact, what to say and when to get in touch, we carry out the following:

Analysing how emails are opened and read

We track emails which we have sent to you to see which messages have the highest response rates and whether there are messages that resonate with particular groups of people.

We do this by logging whether emails we send have been opened, deleted and interacted with (for example, by clicking on links within the emails).

Although we only use this information to look at general patterns, it is still personal data because it is linked to your email address.


This is where we analyse information such as your postcode, the patterns in which you make donations and how you make them.

This helps us to tailor appropriate communications to you, as well as improve your experience as a Sustrans supporter by avoiding sending you information which we think you might find irrelevant.

We undertake some basic, legal and non-intrusive in-house research on a small number of records to help us efficiently identify people who may be able to support us with a larger gift or who have the influence to further our cause.


Adding information that we haven’t been given directly to supporter records

We may add to or update your record with information from publicly available sources.

These activities form a vital part of keeping support for our work going.

You can request more information on these activities or change your preferences at any time by contacting our Supporter Care Team at


We use supporter information to enforce and comply with the law

We may need to share or use your personal information if we are required to do so by law.

For example in response to a warrant or court order and we may use information from other sources for the purposes of fraud prevention, to comply with money laundering regulations or to protect people’s rights, property or safety.

If certain levels of donation are made, the Fundraising Regulator’s Code of Fundraising Practice requires us, and all charities in the UK, to perform checks.

More details can be found on the Fundraising Regulator website.


Who Sustrans shares personal information with and why

We promise to make all reasonable efforts to keep your details secure and will only share them with suppliers or professional agents working on our behalf, for example, professional fundraising organisations who send out our fundraising appeals.

We carefully select these partners and will only share information with them if we are confident that they will protect it and we have a contract in place with them that assures this.

The suppliers and professional agents who we ask to process your personal information on our behalf, undertake services including delivering postal mail, making telephone calls to our Supporters, sending emails, processing credit card payments and analysing our Supporter information (as outlined above).

We do this because it is often time and money efficient and preserves our valuable resources.

We will never share your details with other organisations to use for their own purposes, other than when we are required to do so by law.

Sustrans will not, under any circumstances, share or sell your personal information to any third party for marketing purposes and you will not receive offers from other companies or organisations as a result of you giving us your details.

Certain third-party organisations collect information on our behalf as well as for their own use.

We may receive your personal details from other organisations for our fundraising and marketing purposes when you have consented for this information to be shared, for example, Just Giving.

These organisations have their own data protection and privacy policies, and we urge you to make yourself aware of these before signing up.


Meeting supporter expectations

We take thorough balancing steps, in line with the Institute of Fundraising guidelines, to ensure that what we do is proportional to the benefits Sustrans could expect from a given activity.

We check that what we do is not unduly intrusive or at all damaging to you and would not exceed the reasonable expectations you might have of us.

You can amend the way your data is used at any time by getting in touch and letting us know your wishes.

We will remind you from time to time in the future that we process your data and give you further opportunities to register any objections.

We monitor the feedback we receive to regularly ‘sense check’ and review our practices so that we are testing our understanding of what you might find intrusive or unexpected.

We also incorporate sector best practices so that we make sensible decisions grounded in common sense and your interest, rather than grey areas and loopholes.

We will continue to provide this clear and transparent privacy policy that explains what we do and why we do it in a sensible and open way.

If and when we make changes to this policy which might affect you, we will publicise them and give you the opportunity to talk to us.


If you have any questions or need more information, please email our Supporter Care Team at