Privacy Policy

The Purpose of this Policy

We are committed to protecting your personal information and being transparent about what information we hold about you. We respect your privacy and aim to be honest, fair, diligent and transparent in our handling of personal data.

Using personal information allows us to develop a better understanding of our customers and subscribers, and in turn to provide you with relevant and timely information about the work that we do. It also helps us to engage with potential members of our annual Friends Membership scheme. The purpose of this policy is to give you a clear explanation about how we collect and use the information we collect from you.

We use your information in accordance with all applicable laws concerning the protection of personal information. This policy explains:

  • What information we may collect about you
  • How we may use that information
  • In what situations we may disclose your details to third parties
  • Our use of cookies to improve your use of our website
  • How we keep your personal information secure, how we maintain it for and your rights to be able to access it.

If you have any queries about this policy, please contact us via or at or Winchester Books Festival, Avebury House, 6 St Peter Street, Winchester, SO23 8BN

About us

Our primary purpose is to produce the annual Winchester Books Festival. We are funded by ticket sales, membership fees and corporate sponsorship. We are registered as a Community Interest Company in England and Wales under registration number 14482905.

Information Collection

We collect various types of information and in a number of ways:

Information You Give Us

When you open an account on our website, buy tickets or purchase a membership, we’ll store personal information you give us such as your name, email address, postal address and telephone number. We’ll also keep a record of your purchases and any changes you might make to your orders. We don’t ever store card details; you’ll need to provide them again each time you make a new purchase.

Information About Your Interactions With Us

When you visit our website, we collect information about how you interact with our content. This helps us determine which pieces of content or areas of the website are most popular with our users, so that we can consistently improve the usability and relevancy of the site. When we send you a mailing by email or by post, we store a record of this and, in the case of emails, keep a record of which ones you have opened and which links you have clicked on. This helps us to improve the way in which we communicate with you. When visitors leave comments on the site we collect the data shown n the comments form, and also the visitor’s IP address and browser user agent string to help spam detection. An anonymised string created from your email address (also called a hash) may be provided to Gravatar to see if you are using it. The Gravatar service privacy policy is available here.

Sensitive Personal Data

Data Protection law recognises that certain categories of personal information – such as health information, race, religious beliefs and political opinions – are more sensitive than others. We don’t ever ask for any such information.

Legal Basis

There are three bases under which we may process your data:

a) Contract Purposes

When you make a purchase from us or become a member of our Friends scheme, you are entering into a contract with us. In order to perform this contract, we need to process and store your data. For example, we may need to send you an order confirmation email, deliver your e-tickets (if applicable), let you know of any cancellations, or make sure that you have all the information you need in order to attend an event.

b) Legitimate Business Interests

In certain situations, we collect and process your personal data for purposes that are in our legitimate organisational interest. We only do this if there is no overriding prejudice to you by using your personal information in this way. We describe below all situations where we may use this basis for processing.

c) With Your Explicit Consent

For any situations where the two bases above are not appropriate, we will instead ask for your explicit consent before using your personal information in that specific situation.

Marketing Communications

We aim to communicate with you about the work that we do in ways that you find relevant, timely and respectful. To do this, we use data that we have stored about you – for example, what events you have booked for in the past, or as any preferences what you may have told Winchester Books Festival CIC, Company number: 14482905 Registered address: Avebury House, 6 St Peter Street, Winchester, Hampshire, SO23 8BN Email: us about. We use our legitimate organisational interest as the legal basis for such communications.

By Email

You will receive the opportunity to opt out of email communications during your first purchase with us. If you do not opt out, we will provide you with an option to unsubscribe in every email that we subsequently send to you. Alternatively, you can use the contact details at the end of this policy.

By Post

In the case of postal mailings, you may object to receiving these at any time using the contact details at the end of this policy.

Other Processing Activities

In addition to marketing communications, we also process personal information in the following ways that are within our legitimate organisational interests:

  • We may analyse data we hold about you to ensure that the content and timing of communications that we send to you are as relevant to you as possible.
  • We may analyse data we hold about you in order to identify and prevent fraud.
  • In order to improve our website, we may analyse information about how our site visitors use it and the content that they interact with. Such information is anonymous and amalgamated; we cannot view the behaviour of individual or identifiable users.


In all of the above cases, we will always keep your rights and interests at the forefront to ensure they are not overridden by your own interests or fundamental rights and freedoms. You have the right to object to any of this processing at any time. If you wish to do this, please use the contact details at the end of this policy.

Third Parties

We will never share your personal information with (or sell it to) third-party marketers.

We may use the following third-party service providers named below to process and store your data:

  • Mailchimp to store personal data which uses GDPR appropriate technical and organisational measures in place to ensure a high level of personal data protection. Please read their legal policies to know more about how they process and protect personal data in accordance with data protection laws and good industry practice.


They also offer a Data Processing Addendum (DPA) that meets GDPR requirements and reflects their data privacy and security commitments.

  • Play to the Crowd which we use to manage our box office and ticketing, view their privacy policy
  • Think Creative Consultants Ltd who manage our website, view their privacy policy


From time to time, you may receive information directly from us regarding activities that we run in partnership with third party organisations – for example, our event sponsors or local cultural partners – or regarding initiatives run by those organisations that we choose to support and promote within our customer community. However, the personal data of our customers and e-newsletter subscribers is not, in any case, shared with other such organisations. Your data is viewed and used by us, and us alone.


Cookies are small text files that are automatically placed on your device by some websites that you visit. They are widely used to allow a website to function (for example to keep track of your shopping basket) as well as to provide website operators with information on how the site is being used.

We use cookies to keep track of your basket and to identify how our website is being used (by sharing anonymised data with Google Analytics), so that we can make relevant improvements to improve your experience of using the website. All cookies used by us are done so in accordance with current UK and EU Cookie Law.

As a rule, cookies will make your browsing experience better. However, you may prefer to disable cookies on this site and on others. The most effective way to do this is from within the settings on your web browser. For further details, please consult your browser’s help menu.

It is recommended that you ensure that your internet browser is up-to-date and that you consult the help and guidance provided by the developer of your internet browser if you are unsure about adjusting your privacy settings.

If you leave a comment on our site you may opt-in to saving your name, email address and website in cookies. These are for your convenience so that you do not have to fill in your details again when you leave another comment. These cookies will last for one year.

In your visit to our login page, we will set a temporary cookie to determine if your browser accepts cookies. This cookie contains no personal data and is discarded when you close your browser.

When you log in, we will also set up several cookies to save your login information and your screen display choices. Login cookies last for two days, and screen options cookies last for a year. If you select “Remember Me”, your login will persist for two weeks. If you log out of your account, the login cookies will be removed.

If you edit or publish an article, an additional cookie will be saved in your browser. This cookie includes no personal data and simply indicates the post ID of the article you just edited. It expires after one day.

Your Debit and Credit Card Information

If you use your debit or credit card to make a purchase from us, we will ensure this is carried out securely and in accordance with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI-DSS).

We don’t ever store card details; you’ll need to provide them again each time you make a new purchase.

  • Our ticketing partner is Play to the Crowd, which we use to manage our box office and ticketing, view their privacy policy


Maintaining Your Personal Information

We store your personal information for a number of years so that we are able to link your purchases back to a single unique record that we hold for you on our system.

If there are aspects of your record that are inaccurate or that you would like to remove, you can usually do this by logging into your account through our website. Should you like some help, please use the contact details at the end of this policy.

Any objections you make to any processing of your data will be stored against your record on our system, in order that we can comply with your requests.

Your data will not be kept by us indefinitely; instead, we will keep it for five years after your last interaction with us (with an ‘interaction’ defined by us as a ticket or membership purchase, or the opening one of our emails). Such interactions will be reviewed annually by us at the end of each June; if you have not interacted with us in the five years prior, your personal information will be removed from our records.

Security of your Personal Information

Mailchimp services are hosted by a trusted and certified data storage centre that is located in the European Union. The data storage centre has an information storage security certificate (ISO 27001). The full range of security measures is detailed here.

Your Rights to your Personal Information

You have a right to request a copy of the personal information that we hold about you, and to have any inaccuracies in this data corrected. We are also happy to take requests to be permanently removed from our system.

Please use the contact details at the end of this policy if you should like to exercise either right.

Contact Details and Further Information

Please get in touch if you have any questions about any aspect of this privacy policy, in particular if you would like to object to the processing of your personal information that we carry out for our legitimate organisational interests.



Last updated in February 2024

Contact Us:

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Winchester Books Festival, Avebury House, 6 St Peter Street, Winchester, SO23 8BN

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