Francis Irving

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Francis Irving
Francis Irving
EducationOxford University
OccupationChief Executive Officer

Francis Irving is a British computer programmer, activist for freedom of information and former[1] CEO of ScraperWiki.[2][3][4][5]

Francis Irving developed TortoiseCVS.[6]

He co-founded Public Whip with Julian Todd and became a developer of the affiliated TheyWorkForYou website,[7] a project which parses raw Hansard data to track how members vote in the UK Parliament. Initially risking prosecution for re-using the raw data which was under Crown copyright, the developers of Public Whip were later successful in getting permission to use it.[8] In 2004, Public Whip was recognised in the New Media awards.[9] In 2008, The Daily Telegraph rated TheyWorkforYou 41st in a list of the 101 most useful websites.[10] Irving together with Matthew Somerville wrote the code for FixMyStreet.[11]

Irving was also a senior developer of PledgeBank.[12] He collaborated again with Julian Todd to create 'The Straight Choice', a website (later renamed 'Election Leaflets') that archives election leaflets.[13][14]

He was the Campaign Director of the Save Parliament campaign which opposed the Legislative and Regulatory Reform Bill.[15][16]

He was one of two people to suggest the winning idea of a site through which Freedom of Information Act requests could be made in a mySociety competition for ideas for public interest websites to build.[17] He was later to become the main developer of the site which was called WhatDoTheyKnow.[18] Francis has won seven New Statesman awards for websites he has worked on.[19]


  1. ^ Francis Irving's CV,
  2. ^ Francis Irving,
  3. ^ Martin Rosenbaum (9 June 2010). "Open Secrets: Victory for whatdotheyknow website". BBC. Retrieved 5 January 2014.
  4. ^$280,000-from-knight-foundation-2011062411352/
  5. ^ Irving, Francis (5 May 2011). "ScraperWiki: A story about two boys, web scraping and a worm | ScraperWikiScraperWiki". Archived from the original on 23 June 2013. Retrieved 5 January 2014.
  6. ^ "Companies". TortoiseCVS. Retrieved 5 January 2014.
  7. ^ The Silent State, Heather Brooke p128
  8. ^ Brook, Heather (8 June 2006). "Make it work for us, Ms Tullo". The Guardian. London.
  9. ^ "New Media Awards 2004". Archived from the original on 7 May 2010.
  10. ^ Technology. "The 101 most useful websites". Archived from the original on 5 December 2008. Retrieved 5 January 2014.
  11. ^ "Frequently Asked Questions". FixMyStreet. Retrieved 5 January 2014.
  12. ^ Benjamin, Alison (10 January 2007). "Public inquiry". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 2 May 2010.
  13. ^ Moore, Matthew (15 May 2009). "'British pensioners' on BNP election leaflet are actually Italian models". Archived from the original on 18 May 2009. Retrieved 5 January 2014.
  14. ^ "EU Withdrawal Bill – what your MPS said on your behalf – the Straight Choice". August 2018.
  15. ^ "Write to your Lord to Save Parliament | Save Parliament Blog". 31 October 2006. Retrieved 5 January 2014.
  16. ^ "Francis Irving's CV / Resume". Retrieved 5 January 2014.
  17. ^ "About". WhatDoTheyKnow. Retrieved 5 January 2014.
  18. ^ "mySociety's Freedom of Information site goes live". 22 February 2008. Retrieved 5 January 2014.
  19. ^ "news:rewired » Francis Irving". Retrieved 5 January 2014.