Frequently Asked Questions

What is FixMyStreet?
FixMyStreet is a site to help people report, view, or discuss local problems they’ve found to their local council by simply locating them on a map. It launched in early February 2007.
What sort of problems should I report with FixMyStreet?
FixMyStreet is primarily for reporting things which are broken or dirty or damaged or dumped, and need fixing, cleaning or clearing, such as:
  • Abandoned vehicles
  • Dog Fouling
  • Flyposting or graffiti
  • Flytipping or litter
  • Streetcleaning, such as broken glass in a cycle lane
  • Potholes
What isn’t FixMyStreet for?
FixMyStreet is not a way of getting in touch with the council for all issues – please use FixMyStreet only for problems such as the above. We often route problem reports via cleansing services or highways and so using FixMyStreet for other matters may result in a delay in your report getting to the right department. You will need to contact the council directly for problems such as:
  • Anti-social behaviour
  • Any urgent or emergency problems
  • Noise pollution or barking dogs
  • Fires and smoke/smell pollution
  • Missing wheelie bins or recycling boxes or missed rubbish collections
  • Proposals for speed bumps/ CCTV/ pedestrian crossings/ new road layouts/ etc.
  • Complaining about your neighbours
  • Complaining about the council
  • Joy riding, drug taking, animal cruelty, or other criminal activity

Councils often have direct hotlines for these sorts of issues.

How do I use the site?
After entering a postcode or location, you are presented with a map of that area. You can view problems already reported in that area, or report ones of your own simply by clicking on the map at the location of the problem.
How are the problems solved?
They are reported to the council by email. The council can then resolve the problem the way they normally would. Alternatively, you can discuss the problem on the website with others.
Is it free?
The site is free to use, yes. FixMyStreet is run by a registered charity, though, so if you want to make a contribution, please do.
Can I use FixMyStreet on my mobile?

The FixMyStreet website will already work on your mobile phone, adapting to the size of your screen automatically. Using an app has some advantages, though — for example, you can create a report even when you have no network connection.

Practical Questions

I’m from a council, where do you send the reports?
You can either leave a test report or contact us to find out where reports go at the moment. Also contact us to update the address or addresses we use.
I’m from a council, can we have FixMyStreet on our website?
Yes you can! We offer branded, hosted versions of FixMyStreet for local council websites. Full details.
Do you remove silly or illegal content?
FixMyStreet is not responsible for the content and accuracy of material submitted by its users. We reserve the right to edit or remove any problems or updates which we consider to be inappropriate upon being informed by a user of the site.
Why does the site use kilometres for measurements?
Thanks for asking politely – we never quite understand why some of the rudest emails we receive are on this topic. The British national grid reference system, devised by Ordnance Survey (the British national mapping agency) around the time of the second world war, uses eastings and northings measured in metres and kilometres; the maps we use are from Ordnance Survey and so this is what we use to display distances. There you have it: not everything British is in miles!
Why can’t I zoom out more on the reporting map?
We want to keep FixMyStreet locally focused, so restrict the ability to move radically between areas. The map on Your Reports will let you see all the reports you’ve made, wherever they are. If you’re from the council then the emailed version of the problem report also contains the closest road and postcode to the pin on the map.
This site is great – why aren’t you better publicised?
As a tiny charity we simply don’t have a publicity budget, and we rely on word of mouth to advertise the site. We have a whole array of posters, flyers and badges if you’d like to publicise us on the web or in your local area, and why not write to your local paper to let them know about us?

Privacy Questions

Who gets to see my email address?
If you submit a problem, we pass on your details, and details of the problem, to the council contact or contacts responsible for the area where you located the problem. Other than the council, who obviously get your email address, only people we authorise to view the FixMyStreet administration interface will be able to see your email address and they will never use it for anything other than to help administer FixMyStreet. Similarly with email addresses from updates. We will never give or sell your email address to anyone else, unless we are obliged to by law. Your name will not be published anywhere unless you let us.
Will you send nasty, brutish spam to my email address?
Never. We will email you if someone leaves an update on a problem you’ve reported, and send you a questionnaire email four weeks after you submit a problem, asking for a status update; we’ll only ever send you emails in relation to your problem.

Organisation Questions

Who built FixMyStreet?
This site was built by mySociety, in conjunction with the Young Foundation. mySociety is the project of a registered charity which has grown out of the community of volunteers who built sites like TheyWorkForYou.com. mySociety’s primary mission is to build Internet projects which give people simple, tangible benefits in the civic and community aspects of their lives. Our first project was WriteToThem, where you can write to any of your elected representatives, for free. The charity is called UK Citizens Online Democracy and is charity number 1076346. mySociety can be contacted by email at hello@mysociety.org, or by post at mySociety, 483 Green Lanes, London, N13 4BS, UK.
Ministry of JusticeWho pays for it?
FixMyStreet was originally paid for via the Department for Constitutional Affairs Innovations Fund. It is now funded by a variety of means, from commercial work to donations.
Wasn’t this site called Neighbourhood Fix-It?
Yes, we changed the name mid June 2007. We decided Neighbourhood Fix-It was a bit of a mouthful, hard to spell, and hard to publicise (does the URL have a dash in it or not?). The domain FixMyStreet became available, and everyone liked the name.
Do you need any help with the project?
Yes, we can use help in all sorts of ways, technical or non-technical. Please see our Get Involved page.
I’d like a site like this for my own location/ where’s the "source code" to this site?
The software behind this site is open source, and available to you mainly under the GNU Affero GPL software license. You can download the source code and help us develop it. You’re welcome to use it in your own projects, although you must also make available the source code to any such projects. Fiksgatami is an example of our code being used in a Norwegian version of this site.
I’d prefer code in a different language?
VisibleGovernment.ca wrote their own code for http://www.fixmystreet.ca/, which is written in GeoDjango and available under an MIT licence at github. Or FixMyStreet.org.nz is written in Drupal.

People build things, not organisations. Who actually built it?
Matthew Somerville and Francis Irving wrote the site, Chris Lightfoot wrote the tileserver and map cutter, Richard Pope created our pins, Deborah Kerr keeps things up-to-date and does user support, Ayesha Garrett designed our posters, and Tom Steinberg managed it all. Thanks also to Ordnance Survey (for the maps, UK postcodes, and UK addresses – data © Crown copyright, all rights reserved, Ministry of Justice 100037819 2008), Yahoo! for their BSD-licensed JavaScript libraries, the entire free software community (this particular project was brought to you by Perl, PostgreSQL, and the number 161.290) and Bytemark (who kindly host all our servers). Let us know if we’ve missed anyone.