Customer feedback

About BGS — Contact us

We are committed to providing a high quality and efficient service to our customers and stakeholders. We aim to:

  • address the needs and requirements of all our customers and users through provision of relevant, comprehensive and up-to-date information and advice to modern standards and appropriate specifications
  • determine customer or user needs and requirements through consultation
  • provide work of assured quality within the context of an agreed framework of standards against which it can be judged
  • operate at all times to the highest professional standards
  • emphasise impartiality, confidentiality, reliability and promptness, and value for money
  • treat people at all times with courtesy and respect, and in a professional manner

These standards demonstrate our commitment to best practice procedures and will be continuously reviewed in line with government recommendations.

We welcome feedback, good or bad, from customers and stakeholders on the quality of the products and services that we offer. Tell us what you think.

Make a complaint

The British Geological Survey is part of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI). UKRI is committed to operating a responsive, transparent and fair complaints process. We follow the Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman Principles of Good Complaint Handling.

You should use this procedure if you want to make a complaint about our standard of service or activities.

When to make a complaint using this procedure

You should use this complaints procedure if:

  • we have not followed agreed policies, procedures or legal obligations
  • a BGS employee has been unhelpful or insensitive in their dealings with you
  • we have not responded or have taken an unreasonable amount of time to answer a query or request
  • you are dissatisfied with how we have handled a data protection, Environmental Information Regulations (EIR) or Freedom of Information (FOI) request.  Information on how to make requests under the legislation can be found here.

Do not use this procedure if:

  • the issue you want to complain about is subject to litigation or legal proceedings
  • your complaint has previously been through this procedure and has been closed.

When you should use a different procedure:

How to make a complaint

Step 1

You should make your initial complaint directly to the BGS employee you have been dealing with (for example on an enquiry, application or project) because they are best placed to put matters right as quickly as possible.

If they are not able to resolve your complaint, or your complaint is about a member of BGS staff, you may wish to go to step 2 and make a formal complaint.

Step 2

You must make your complaint in writing, either by email or letter. Any complaints made via telephone will need to be followed up in writing so that they can be formally investigated.

In making a complaint, you should include:

  • your reason for making the complaint, providing a clear description of your experience and what outcome you would like to see
  • the department of BGS your complaint relates to, including a contact name if known
  • if this is your first complaint or if it relates to a previous case
  • your contact details, including telephone number and address.

Send your complaint to:

BGS Director
British Geological Survey
NG12 5GG

How we will handle your complaint

We will acknowledge your complaint within three working days and, in most cases, provide you with a full response within 20 working days. If it is not possible to provide a full response within this time, we will give you:

  • details of the progress we have made
  • a target date for when we are aiming to respond to your complaint
  • contact details if you want to get in touch with us.

How to appeal

If you are not satisfied with our response, you have the right to appeal within one calendar month of the date we responded to your complaint.

Refer your complaint to the UKRI Deputy Director Risk and Assurance, via email:

The contact details by post are:

Deputy Director Risk and Assurance

UK Research and Innovation

Polaris House

North Star Avenue



You must provide them with the reference numbers of the complaint you are appealing.

Please explain clearly where our complaint investigation:

  • has not been satisfactory
  • has incorrectly or has not fully investigated your original issues
  • has provided incorrect information

If you have any new or supporting evidence, please provide this and tell them how you would like us to resolve things.

UKRI will assess your concerns to decide if there is a rationale to review these outstanding issues. You may be asked to attend a virtual meeting with the reviewer to discuss your concerns. They will aim to respond to your appeal within 20 working days.

How to appeal about an information rights response

If your concerns relate to a response issued under the Freedom of Information Act, Environmental Information Regulations or the General Data Protection Regulation, a different procedure applies. You should send your appeal to:

Head of Information Governance
UK Research and Innovation
Polaris House
North Star Avenue

Email addresses for appeals relating to:

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