Getting data from GCER

Each year GCER produces hundreds of data search reports for ecological consultancies and other commercial data users. We can provide:

  • Maps and descriptions for non-statutory sites
  • Lists and/or distribution maps for rare, protected and notable species
  • Maps and citations for statutory designated wildlife areas
  • Landscape-level maps of habitats, Nature Improvement Areas and Strategic Nature Areas
  • Combined reports listing, or mapping, any of the above
  • GIS mapping, analysis and interpretation of wildlife data, including raw data provided by the client

We find that most searches fit within a one- or two-hour rate. See below for a rough guide to how much a search is likely to cost. Data searches for ecological consultants are prioritised above other work. We aim to respond to all requests within 48 hours and complete all searches within 10 working days (the average is 5 days). As these are already prioritised we don't have a "fast track" option - effectively they're all fast-tracked as far as is possible. However, we try to order our work according to the urgency of the request, so if you need something extra quickly it is worth asking if it can be given the highest priority.

Complete a data request form and send it to us for a quick quote for any of our data services. The green button at the top of this page opens a standard online form, but you can also click here for alternative formats.

..... Speed up data requests:

  • Not sure about which LERC to contact? check here first
  • Make it clear on the request form which categories of information you need e.g. "bats only", "Local Sites only", "all designated sites and species" etc.
  • Specify a central grid reference point for radius searches. UK Ordnance Survey references are preferred but lat/long references are also helpful.
  • Specify a date range or cutoff date (e.g. "records from the last 10 years") if you don't want lots of much older records included in your search results
  • Include a map if you'd like the search to relate to specific area(s) rather than a central point
  • Check that your instructions are the same on the map as on the request form!

Service charges

Like the majority of LERCs, GCER charges for commercial data searches. This includes exporting and preparing data and reports, and also the time spent on collating and processing the many and varied sources of incoming data. Government funding for LERCs has reduced in recent years and we do not get any grant aid. Commercial data searches are therefore an important element of our income, enabling us to continue to operate and offer the benefits of having a central point for collating, validating and providing biological data. We aim to keep our standard commercial searches as quick and cheap as possible whilst ensuring that records are clearly-presented, well-validated and as comprehensive as data sources permit.

In years of low interest rates we have sometimes been able to freeze our search rates from one year to the next. This isn't one of those years unfortunately. Standard GCER data search rates set in April 2022 will mostly rise from April 2023 due to soaring increases in overheads. These rates will remain until March 2024. From April 2023, charges are as follows:

Data searches

Our minimum search fee for commercial data searches is £135, covering the first hour. More lengthy requests will be charged at £85 [unchanged from 2022] for each extra hour.

Commercial projects, website design and advanced GIS work

Standard commercial day rate for data collation, basic web content, data conversion and provision: £385

Advanced commercial day rate for spatial analysis, ecological modelling, interactive web design and advanced report creation: £490

Administration fee for smaller or ‘add-on’ items of work: £32

Ways of reducing data search costs

We want our data to get used! In the interests of the many small consultancies who use our services we try to keep price increases to a minimum by constantly looking for new ways to increase the speed and efficiency of searches. Consultants may be able to reduce costs further by combining several searches into one slightly wider search, eg. if you have several nearby sites with overlapping search radiuses required for the same client.

We may also be able to reduce costs if you require just a spreadsheet of results and no associated maps, GIS layers or reports - although conditions of data use would still apply. This may not provide a useful output directly to clients but can be helpful for consultants' preliminary screening of large areas in order to decide where to concentrate more detailed searches or surveys later in the assessment process.

Data request form offline downloads

To use the old style of request form, right-click on the required link below and choose "save link as" (or the equivalent command for your browser).
Word files .docx
Older Word files .doc
Open Office Open Document .odt
Pages for MAC .pages
Portable Document Format .pdf
Plain text .txt