Records Retention Policy

Shirley Parish Council recognises that the efficient management of its records is necessary to comply with its legal and regulatory obligations and to contribute to the effective overall management of the association. This document provides the policy framework through which this effective management can be achieved and audited.

It covers:


This policy applies to all records created, received or maintained by Shirley Parish Council in the course of carrying out its functions. Records are defined as all those documents which facilitate the business carried out by Shirley Parish Council and which are thereafter retained (for a set period) to provide evidence of its transactions or activities. These records may be created, received or maintained in hard copy or electronically. A small percentage of Shirley Parish Council records may be selected for permanent preservation as part of the Councils archives and for historical research.


Shirley Parish Council has a corporate responsibility to maintain its records and record management systems in accordance with the regulatory environment. The person with overall responsibility for this policy is the Clerk. The person responsible for records management will give guidance for good records management practice and will promote compliance with this policy so that information will be retrieved easily, appropriately and timely. Individual staff and employees must ensure that records for which they are responsible are accurate and are maintained and disposed of in accordance with Shirley Parish Council’s records management guidelines.

Retention Schedule

The retention schedule refers to record series regardless of the media in which they are stored.

Document Minimum Retention Period Reason
Minutes of Council meetings Indefinite Archive
Minutes of committee meetings Indefinite Archive
Staff employment contracts 6 years after ceasing employment Management
Staff payroll information 3 years Management
Staff references 6 years after ceasing employment Management
Application forms (interviewed – unsuccessful) 6 months Management
Application forms (interviewed – successful) 6 years after ceasing employment Management
Disciplinary files 6 years after ceasing employment Management
Staff appraisals 6 years after ceasing employment Management
Scales of fees and charges 6 years Management
Receipt and payment accounts 6 years VAT
Bank statements Last completed audit year Audit
Cheque book stubs Last completed audit year Audit
Paid invoices 6 years VAT
Paid cheques 6 years Limitation Act 1980
Payroll records 12 years HMRC
Petty cash accounts 6 years HMRC
Insurance policies 6 years after policy end Management
Certificates for Insurance against liability for employees 40 years after policy end Employer’s Liability Regs 1998
Certificates for Public Liability 6 years after policy end Management
Insurance claim records 6 years after policy end Management
Health and Safety
Accident books 3 years from date of last entry Statutory
Risk assessment 3 years Management
General Management
Councillors contact details Duration of membership Management
Lease agreements Indefinite Audit/Management
Contracts Indefinite Audit/Management
Email messages At end of useful life Management
Consent forms 5 years Management
GDPR Security Compliance form Duration of membership Management