Privacy Policy

We realise that people are concerned about their privacy so we make every effort to ask for the minimum amount of information and ensure that all the details that you entered to register for this site are stored in a secure and confidential way. Any details which are not shown on your profile are only used for the club to monitor statistics about our users and can only be accessed by selected Officers of the club.

Members may be asked for additional information to enable us to send them a printed copy of our magazine Outdoors (if applicable). Online payment details are not held on our website.

If you wish to know exactly what data is kept about you, please ask any of the Trustees.

Who we are

The Gay Outdoor Club Ltd is a Company and Charity registered in England and Wales.  Our website address is:  Our registered address is BM GOC, London WC1N 3XX (for official correspondence only).

What personal data we collect and why we collect it


When visitors leave comments on the site we collect the data shown in the comments form, and also the visitor’s IP address and browser user agent string to help spam detection.

An anonymized string created from your email address (also called a hash) may be provided to the Gravatar service to see if you are using it. The Gravatar service privacy policy is available here: After approval of your comment, your profile picture is visible to the public in the context of your comment.


If you upload images to the website, you should avoid uploading images with embedded location data (EXIF GPS) included. Visitors to the website can download and extract any location data from images on the website.

Contact forms

If you submit a message through our contact forms your name, email address and current IP address will be logged.  These details, along with your message, will also be disclosed to the recipient of your message.  If you are logged in when you submit a message, then your account name and email address will be logged and shared.


The GOC website, like many others, uses small files called ‘cookies’ to help customise your experience. Cookies are stored by the web browser on your computer. They allow us to tailor the appearance of many of the pages to suit your needs and to optimise the site’s performance. For example, if you wish to register as a user on the site, and log in, we use cookies to remember that you’re an authorised user. These cookies remain on your computer until you log out or close your browser window.

We also use cookies to anonymously track visitor numbers to some pages on the site using a third-party service.

By using the GOC website, you are consenting to our use of cookies in accordance with this Cookie Policy. If you do not agree to our use of cookies in this way, you can set your browser settings to control or disable cookies. Information on controlling and deleting cookies on a variety of popular web browsers is available at Please note that by deleting our cookies or disabling cookies for this site, you will not be able to log in to the site or take advantage of the additional facilities offered to registered users.

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.

If you have an account and you log in to this site, 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 1 day.

Embedded content from other websites

Articles on this site may include embedded content (e.g. videos, images, articles, etc.). Embedded content from other websites behaves in the exact same way as if the visitor has visited the other website.

These websites may collect data about you, use cookies, embed additional third-party tracking, and monitor your interaction with that embedded content, including tracing your interaction with the embedded content if you have an account and are logged in to that website.


We use Google Analytics to track website usage.  Google will save a cookie in your browser which contains a unique identifier.

Payment Details

We do not directly collect or store payment information.

If you choose to pay for membership by Credit or Debit card, your payment details will be processed and stored by Stripe.  Stripe provide us with a token that identifies your payment method for future payments.  We also store the card type, last four digits and the expiry date of your payment card so that the card can be easily referenced.

If you choose to pay for membership by Direct Debit, your payment details will be processed and stored by GoCardless.  GoCardless provide us with a token that identifies your payment method for future payments.

For all payment details we also store your full billing address


This site utilizes caching in order to facilitate a faster response time and better user experience. Caching potentially stores a duplicate copy of every web page that is on display on this site. All cache files are temporary, and are never accessed by any third party, except as necessary to obtain technical support from the cache plugin vendor. Cache files expire on a schedule set by the site administrator, but may easily be purged by the admin before their natural expiration, if necessary.


We send you emails when you register on the site, and to confirm when your account activation is complete. We also send you emails in response to requests made by yourself, including upgrade requests and changes of email address. If you join GOC, or renew your membership online, we will send confirmatory emails to your registered e-mail address, and you will also receive payment confirmation messages from our electronic payment provider. You will receive email notification when your annual membership is due for renewal. You do not need to opt in to receive any of these notifications.

All emails from the GOC site are sent with the sender’s address as [email protected].

If you are a GOC member, you may send and receive personal email messages to other members via the site. If you wish, you can opt out of receiving personal messages and other members will not be able to send them to you. Messages you send will reveal your email address to the recipient in the reply-to field so they can respond to you.

If you are a GOC member with a specific role such as a Group Coordinator or an Event Contact, you will also receive individual emails from registered and unregistered site visitors.

If bulk emails we send to you are bounced because your address is no longer active, we will remove your address from our system, usually within 1 week.

Bulk Mailings

We send occasional news updates (usually monthly) and a fortnightly digest of events to all users who have opted in to receive bulk mailings. You are considered to have opted in if you leave the box ‘I wish to receive occasional mailings by email from GOC’ ticked at time of registration. You can change these settings at any time by visiting the Messaging Options page within the My GOC section.

If you subscribe to a local or special interest group, you have the option of opting in to bulk mailings sent from the group coordinators. You can change these settings at any time by visiting the Messaging Options page or by unsubscribing from the group. Group Coordinators typically send one or two mailings per month.

If you wish to stop receiving bulk mailings, you can change your settings, or you can click the ‘unsubscribe’ link in any bulk mailing we send you. You will be given the option to unsubscribe to all mailings, or specify the mailings you wish to receive.

If you report our mailings as spam via your ISP, and we receive a ‘spam complaint’ via our email service provider, we will automatically remove you from our mailing lists by opting you out of all bulk mailing options. This is usually done within 24 hours. You can log in and change these settings at a later date.

If bulk emails we send to you are bounced because your address is no longer active, we will cancel all your opt-in mailings, usually within 1 week.

If you are not a GOC member and do not log in to the site for over a year, your profile will be deleted. We will send you an email one month before this time so you can log in and continue to use the site if you wish.

Who we share your data with

Data is shared with:

  • Google  (for analytics)
  • Stripe – payment processing by credit or debit card
  • Go Cardless – payment processing by Direct Debit

How long we retain your data

If you leave a comment, the comment and its metadata are retained indefinitely. This is so we can recognize and approve any follow-up comments automatically instead of holding them in a moderation queue.

For users that register on our website, we also store the personal information they provide in their user profile. All users can see, edit, or delete their personal information at any time (except they cannot change their username). Website administrators can also see and edit that information.

What rights you have over your data

If you have an account on this site, or have left comments, you can request to receive an exported file of the personal data we hold about you, including any data you have provided to us. You can also request that we erase any personal data we hold about you. This does not include any data we are obliged to keep for administrative, legal, or security purposes.

Where we send your data

Contact form data will be sent to the selected recipient.  Other form data, such as comments and forums, may be checked through a spam identification service.

Additional information

How we protect your data

We do not store any payment information in our databases.  Passwords used on this site are all stored using a one-way encryption

What third parties we receive data from

We do not make use of any purchased data, or receive data to use from any third party.

What automated decision making and/or profiling we do with user data

No automated decision making or profiling is undertaken using the data collected.

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