Introduction and Installation

Available in evaluation mode (no changes are saved) in all versions of Postcode Plus

If you have purchased Postcode Plus with Refiner, changes can be saved.


Refiner cleans address lists or databases containing UK postal addresses against the definitive Royal Mail Address File (PAF). It provides the highest possible levels of accurate automated cleansing and correction and an easy interactive mode.

Launch Refiner from the separate icon in your Postcode Plus group, select Start - Programs - AFD Postcode Plus - Refiner. Alternatively from Postcode Plus you can launch the product by clicking Refiner from the Tools menu.

Backup & Quality Control

Refiner can make substantial changes to your address list, so you should never process a list until a FULL AND SECURE BACKUP is taken. You are strongly advised to work on a copy of your database rather than on live data - you may wish to compare the data after changes with the old, unchanged list.

Even if you write the cleaned data out to separate fields in your database or choose to output to a different database you should still ensure your data is backed up to ensure you do not lose anything should you set something up incorrectly. A mistake should be easy to spot and correct, but if your data is not backed up then you will have no way of returning to your original data to correct that mistake.

You should ensure that you employ proper quality control procedures to ensure you are happy with the changes made to your database before finally accepting the results and using them in a mailing.

All programs and data provided by Refiner are copyright and protected by the 1988 Copyright, Designs and Patents Act in the United Kingdom and by the Berne convention and other International Copyright treaties. You are permitted to install and use components of Refiner only under license and only on the number of computers, terminals, workstations or screens for which a license is held, although the larger data elements of the system may be installed on a file server for central access if a multi-user license is held. You may additionally make one copy of the program master disks for back-up purposes, but no other copies are permitted, for whatever reason.

Evaluation versions of Refiner and the associated sample data are nevertheless copyright material. You may make and distribute copies of the evaluation version and its sample data, but these copies must be complete and unaltered. You may NOT use the sample data provided for any purpose other than to assist in evaluating the usefulness of Refiner.

Data within Refiner is the copyright of AFD Computers and the British Post Office. You may access and use this data only as part of the Refiner system, to provide address data for a bona-fide address-based application. You may not extract, reverse-engineer or re-distribute data or programs provided under any circumstances whatsoever.

The Refiner license is renewable annually and renewal fees include a fresh set of data, program updates and free technical support for the year. Intermediate data updates are available quarterly at nominal cost, or you may subscribe to the POP scheme and cover all costs of using Refiner including program and data updates, data licenses and technical support for just £99/month (min 12 months) including VAT, payable by standing order.

Technical Support

Making sure that our customers get the best from our products is important to us - so long as you have a current licensed copy of a Postcode product, we're here to help:

World Wide Web

This major resource provides 24 hour, direct access to all AFD's technical resources. If you have a question, need program examples or require a skilled Postcode dealer to help with your system, start by visiting our web site at: or email your request to


If you don't yet have Internet access, our HelpDesk on 01624 811712 will help ensure that your copy of the program is installed and functioning correctly. The HelpDesk is manned Monday - Friday 9am - 5pm (except holidays). Ensure that you are next to your computer, which is switched on prior to calling.

These services provide free, unlimited support about all aspects of using the postcode product range. Whilst we will endeavour to help with general advice, we cannot assist with questions or problems that are not related to your use of an AFD Product - nor can we resolve hardware or network errors. You should refer these questions to your System Manager.

Data & Data Updates

Address data is constantly changing as a result of property redevelopment, business moves and the increasing trend towards the automation of mail delivery. To ensure that you get the maximum benefit from your investment in AFD Postcode programs, you should ensure that the data you are using is as up-to-date as possible. With Refiner you can update your database with Postcode, town and other address changes that Royal Mail make to ensure your data contains, as far as possible, correct addresses for ensuring fast and correct delivery today.

AFD have invested in state-of-the-art technology to provide you with the best possible address data within our programs. Taking Royal Mail data direct and converting it ready for release to our customers in just three days, means that AFD Data is often weeks and sometimes months more up-to-date than data from other sources.

Four data updates are issued each year - usually in early March, June, September and January - subject to Royal Mail delivery.

Make sure that you place your order so that each optional data update is sent to you as soon as it is prepared - or join the POP scheme so that all costs of Data Licenses, Program and Data Updates are covered in one modest standing order payment and shipped automatically when available.

Opening Your Database

From the Refiner 'File' menu, click on 'Open Database' . Locate and select the database to be cleaned and a pop-up menu will then allow selection of the specific database table containing the address data to be cleaned.

Supported Database Formats

Refiner can operate with Microsoft Access databases (Access 2 to Access 2002), xBase files (dBase, Foxpro, Clipper, etc), and Paradox tables. It also has native support for delimited (e.g. quoted comma separated) and fixed record length ASCII Text files.

Most other databases can be accessed through Refiner's ODBC support, providing a DSN for that data source has been set-up on your system.

Opening Non-ODBC Databases

Use the 'File' Menu 'Open Database' (Ctrl+D) option to open non-ODBC databases. Select the database file you wish to work on and Refiner pops up a menu. From this menu choose whether to work on a straight table of data (an Access database may offer several tables within the database file), or whether to use an SQL query. If you select to use SQL Query, a simple SQL Query is provided for access to the data in the first table. This is a starting point and the Query can be modified to suit your needs.

At the end of the SQL Database Query used to open the database, Refiner automatically adds 'ORDER BY Postcode', (where 'Postcode' is the name of your postcode field if Refiner can determine it). This causes records to be processed in postcode order which, due to the way caching works, improves Refiner's performance. To process the database in record order simply remove this part of the query and click 'Query' to update. If 'ORDER BY Postcode is not added, or the field name is incorrect, just add or correct it to enhance performance.

Opening Delimited Text Files

Refiner includes very flexible delimited text file support for working with data in text format. This is particularly useful if your data format is not supported, as you can convert a copy to one which is, so that it can be processed. Most databases can export to Comma Separated Text (sometimes known as CSV or ASCII). As delimited text has it's limitations, If your database supports exporting fixed format text you may prefer to use that instead (see next section). Refiner can only write back to fixed record length files it is reading data from - so if you process a delimited text file, a new file is created with the file suffix '.new', e.g. processing 'Address.Txt' would create 'Address.New'. It is helpful if the first 'Record' in your text file has the names of the fields in each field - like 'Street', 'Town'. Refiner can then display these during attachment. SQL cannot be used to work with Text Files - so queries and sorting should be carried out before processing through Refiner.

When you open a delimited text file you will be presented with the following options to specify the format of that text file:

The delimiter is the character which separates each field in the text file, e.g. a comma is the most common here. The qualifier is the character used to help prevent field cross-over as mentioned previously. If there is no qualifier present you can select None from the drop down list. Address list data is especially susceptible to spurious delimiter characters - like quote marks or commas. House names entered as "The Willows" or address lines like Rose Cottage, High Street, can mean that any data process thinks there are more fields than there really are. This is a problem. It's best to use Quoted Comma Delimited text which is less sensitive to errors. If there are problems in your data export Refiner protects against the address record cross-over that can occur in these circumstances - and limits damage, usually just to one record . It remains far better if these characters are removed before creation of your processing file. The use first record for field names option specifies that the first record in the text file contains the field names - it is recommended you include these when exporting your data to make identifying and mapping fields much easier.

Opening Fixed Record Length Text Files

Fixed record length text files are a very efficient file format and all Refiner features are supported when using them. If your database is not directly supported, or you want maximum speed and flexibility from Refiner this may be the best format for you. The only format which is as efficient as Fixed Record length text files for Refiner to process is dBase files, Paradox tables come a very close third.

When you open a fixed record length text file you will be presented with the following options to specify the format of that text file:

Refiner will attempt to automatically detect the format of the text file, but if you need to adjust this because there is no record separator so the record length cannot be determined or you need to tweak field positions then you can enter these directly here. You can also review some of the records in the file on the right using the navigation controls above the Cancel button to ensure the format is correctly specified.

Opening ODBC Databases

Use the 'File' Menu 'Open ODBC Connection' option to open a connection to an ODBC database that you have configured a DSN for on your system. The screen will change to allow you to select a DSN, and type your user identifier (uid) and password (pwd) if required and any additional parameters you may require to connect to that database through ODBC. You can then enter the SQL Query to access the data to be cleaned. Then click the 'Query' button to connect to your database.

To improve performance, add 'ORDER BY Postcode', (where Postcode is the name of your postcode field) at the end of the SQL Query when opening Microsoft Access or ODBC databases. If the postcode is held in two separate 'outcode' and 'incode' fields this can be specified by using 'ORDER BY Outcode,Incode' etc.

Using SQL

Using SQL to query a database is a powerful, flexible way to control the cleaning process. To use it means learning some simple SQL statements. SQL can be used to restrict cleaning to just parts of the database (perhaps where postcodes are missing), to re-start a cleaning session where it was left-off - or as shown to speed up processing by presenting data in postcode order - which is far more efficient on disk access.

The precise form of these examples will vary with the name of the database and the name of the fields within it, but should be easy to translate:

Select * from [Addresses]

Selects all fields from a table called 'Addresses'. Every address record will be processed.

Select * from [Addresses] where Postcode is null

As above - but only processes address records with a blank postcode field.

Select * from [Addresses] where Len(Postcode) < 6

As above - but only processes records where the data in the postcode field is too short - e.g. B1 instead of B1 1AA.

Select * from [Addresses] where Postcode is not null order by Postcode

As above - but only processes records with postcode field populated and processes the database in postcode order. (this can significantly improve processing speed!).

For full details of supported SQL statements please refer to your database engine's own documentation.

Use Progress Bar

The Progress Bar on the Process Tab gives an ongoing visual indication of how much of a database has been cleansed. Refiner counts every record when a database is opened or re-queried so that an accurate Progress Bar can be displayed. This database scan takes time and may be undesirable. The progress bar can be switched on / off from the 'Progress Bar' option on the ' Options' menu.

Selecting Input Fields

From the 'Input' tab (shortcut key [Alt]+2) select from the 'Available Fields' those which contain address data and transfer them to the 'In-use' list.

Selecting Fields

All fields containing address elements must be transferred to the 'Address Matching Fields' list using the buttons in the centre of this screen. Do not transfer any fields that are used for non address data, as Refiner will attempt to match these to address data and include them in the address. This could result in incorrect results and surplus information included in the addresses written back to your database.

  • Add all fields from the 'Available Fields' list to the 'In-use' list
  • Add the selected fields in the 'Available Fields' list to the 'In-use' list
  • Remove the selected fields from the 'In-use' list
  • Remove all fields from the 'In-use' list

To select an item in either list box simply click on the field name. To select multiple fields click field names while holding down the 'Ctrl' key on your keyboard or to select a range of fields hold down the shift key and click the first and last field in the range you wish to select before releasing the Shift key.

We recommend that you test Process a number of records interactively to check that fields are correctly mapped. If the correct Input Fields have not been selected simply return to this screen to make corrections.

Field Order

Fields are displayed in the 'Available Fields' list in the order they are held in your database. Normally this will mean that they are in the correct order for the address. However if you add an additional field that you earlier missed, or the fields are not in the correct order, use the up and down arrow's on the right of the 'In-use' list to correct this.

For address cleaning to be effective it is important to ensure the 'In-use' list is in the correct order of address elements, i.e. the order you would write them on an envelope.

Name Fields

Refiner does not contain name data. However, if name fields are transferred to the 'In-use' list it's possible to use the name as part of the de-duplication process or to process the name data to combine name elements into a single field or split a field into it's constituent parts.

For each name field in the 'In-use' list you must select the field and check the 'Name Field' box to the right of the 'In-use' list and select from the list of options below the type of name field that field is. This will prevent Refiner incorrectly including these as part of the address. The only fields that Refiner will specifically recognise as a name if this has not been indicated are those starting with a commonly used title (e.g. Mr, Miss, Mrs, Ms, Prof, Doctor etc.).

Organisation Field

This option is for use when cleaning databases where there is a separate 'organisation' field which has been consistently used.

PAF contains around 1.5 million organisation names. Transferring the organisation field from the 'Available Fields' list to the 'In-use' list will enable a higher match rate during cleansing, especially for organisations with a PO Box address.

Some addresses match to a PAF record but contain an 'extra' field above the address. In these cases Refiner must place that information in either the property or organisation field. The process for deciding this is usually accurate. However, by selecting the 'organisation' check box, the organisation field is fixed and if there is any uncertainty then this field is automatically retained as it appears and is not transferred to the property field.

DX Fields

This option applies only to DX Customers. The DX enabled version of Refiner includes the option to mark Input fields as containing a DX Number and Exchange. These are for when your database contains an existing DX Number field, which should be mapped in and marked appropriately.

Should you have no seperate DX Number field but some of your Input addresses are DX addresses there is no need to mark anything - Refiner will extract the DX details from them automatically.

Specifying Output

The Output tab (shortcut key [Alt]+3) is used to specify how Refiner writes back address data to your database. For databases where there is a separate field for each address element, simply drag the field name from the list on the right ('Postcode Plus Fields') to the appropriate yellow box on the left. Refiner is very flexible and supports writing back to address databases in highly complex or unusual formats.

Mapping Fields

From the list beneath 'Postcode Plus Fields' caption (right of screen), choose and map Postcode Plus fields to your database. Click the left mouse button down on a field and drag it over to the yellow box corresponding to the field you wish to map to... then release the mouse button. Use the scroll bar to move up and down the 'Postcode Plus Fields' list to find further fields for mapping.

More than one 'Postcode Plus' field can be mapped to the same (yellow) destination field in your database. For example, if there is no output field for locality, then the locality will need to be dragged to either the street or town field of your database. This is called concatenation. By default, Refiner will separate concatenated fields with a comma and place them in logical order. To change this order or the field concatenator, double click the relevant yellow box - see Changing Field Options below for more details.

Please note that for a complete mailing address all fields from Organisation through to Postcode (county is optional) must be mapped back to your database.

Delivery Point Suffix (DPS). A DPS code is only available for a letterbox level address and not for a street level address. So, where DPS Codes are mapped from the 'Postcode Plus Fields' list to a database, Refiner will map back a default DPS of 9Z for addresses which can only be matched to street level. This will help reach maximum Mailsort discount. To switch on /off the writing back of a default DPS toggle the 'Write back Default DPS' item on the Options menu.

Selecting the 'Special' radio button (beneath 'Postcode Plus Fields' caption) will change the list to display raw PAF fields. This enables, for example, building number to be separated from street name and the outcode / incode portions of the Postcode to be separated. (the part before and after the space respectively) . You can mix special and normal fields in your mappings. See Special Fields below for more details.

Only map back Name fields (Name, Title, First Name, Middle Name and Surname) if you have selected them as Input fields for processing these (such as splitting a name into it's constituent parts). Name data is not included as part of the Refiner. So, if name fields exist on your database and have NOT been mapped to 'In-use' - then mapping Postcode Plus Fields to your name fields on the Output tab will overwrite them with blank data.

Where a name field/s are transferred to the 'In-use' list Refiner can be set to split or combine fields. Simply map from the Postcode Plus Fields list to the appropriate output field/s (using drag and drop)

Special Fields

Standard Fields take care of the many anomalies and inconsistencies of raw PAF data. We recommend that you use these fields for mapping wherever possible.

Selecting 'Special' from the drop down list underneath the 'Postcode Plus Fields' caption will change the list of fields to show standard PAF (unformatted) address fields as well as separate Outcode and Incode fields. Select 'Standard' from the drop down list to switch back to the standard fields and map different fields from each list.

The fields provided in this list are as follows:

  • Department
  • Organisation Name
  • Sub Building
  • Building
  • Number
  • Dependant Thoroughfare
  • Thoroughfare
  • Dbl-Dep Locality
  • Dependant Locality
  • Abbrv. Postal County
  • Optional County
  • Abbrv. Optional County
  • Traditional County
  • Administrative County
  • Outcode
  • Incode
  • Barcode
  • <Transparent>
  • <Blank>

When using Special Fields map all or none of the fields from Building Number through to Dependant Locality and do not mix and match with the Property, Street and Locality fields from the 'Standard' list. To mix these fields will cause some addresses to be trashed. This is because the standard fields not only concatenate many numbers with the street but also sometimes move the property or concatenate to the locality field as appropriate according to the PAF formatting rules.

Address elements not provided on the Special Fields list are excluded because they are identical to those on the Standard Fields list, e.g. the Town field is never reformatted. If you need to map the building number separately but only have a single property field you can drag both the sub building and building fields to the same field in your database and they will be concatenated together as appropriate.

You should note that the Organisation field in this list is different to that on the Standard fields list. In the standard fields list Organisation appears concatenated with the Department (when present), here the Organisation field is separated out from the Department. Similarly the Street field on the standard list is concatenated with the dependant street (where present), here they are separated.

For example, if your database has standard address fields from Organisation through to Postcode, but has a separate Number field you would make the following mappings:

Database Field Field Type Field Name to Map
Organisation Standard Organisation
Property Special Sub Building, Building
Number Special Building Number
Street Special Dependant Thoroughfare, Thoroughfare
Locality Special Dbl-Dep. Locality, Dependant Locality
Town Standard Town
Postcode Standard Postcode

Note: You concatenate fields together, e.g. 'Dependant Thoroughfare' and 'Thoroughfare' together as above by dragging the first field (Dependant Throughfare) and then dragging the next one (Throughfare) to the same field.

The <Transparent> field does not affect what is written back to your database. It is simply used if you wish to view a field unaltered in the suggested record when carrying out any manual cleaning through Refiner. As with any field with nothing mapped Refiner will not alter or write back any field that is mapped too. You only need to map this field if you specifically need to view non-address fields to assist with manual cleaning.

DX Fields

For DX customers, the DX Enabled version of Refiner includes a DX Field Output group. You can use this to write out DX data to your database. By mapping out the DX Number and DX Exchange you will have these supplied wherever they can be successfully matched. Existing DX data in your database will be retained, but the DX Status field will help in examining those that are or may be incorrect. See the DX Status Codes section for details of what each value of the DX Status field means.

Changing Field Options

To remove all field mappings from a field in your database simply drag those fields back to the field list box. You can also move mappings from one field to another by dragging them between fields.

To remove a field mapped to one in your database, to rearrange the order, or to change the field concatenator, simply double click the yellow box containing the field mapping to display the following dialog:

To remove a Postcode Plus field simply select it in the list and click the 'Remove' button. To re-arrange the order in which more than one Postcode Plus field is written back to your single database field, use the Up and Down arrows above and below the 'Remove' button. The 'Field Separator' option to the right can be used to select how fields are concatenated together when written back to a single field in your database. The option is not needed and not available for use to pre-cede the first of the concatenated fields. Refiner will only use the Field Separator where there is data to separate. The 'Use for all' option applies the chosen Field Separator to all fields in the list. To specify the different Separators for individual fields - uncheck 'Use for all'

Line Squeeze

We strongly recommend that your database is structured with fields for a minimum of each of the following address elements: Organisation, Property, Street, Locality, Town, County, Postcode and that these fields are used consistently. (obviously you may want to add others such as Department or DPS code etc).

However, sometimes an adequate number of fields are not available and / or these are restricted in length. In these cases it's useful to use 'line squeeze' Line Squeeze means for example, that if no locality data exists in an address record Town would be moved up to occupy the blank locality field and County would be moved up to occupy the blank town field. Refiner allows you to "line squeeze" fields in your database and to select which fields to "line squeeze".

To Line Squeeze fields together simply click the check box that follows that field name. You will see the fields join as you check more than one consecutive field. It is not possible to line squeeze non-consecutive fields.

Cleaning Settings

The Settings Tab (Shortcut Key [Alt]+4) is where you specify the options for how Refiner cleans your database.

Note that you can reset Refiner cleaning settings to the defaults by selecting the "Reset To Default Settings" option on the File Menu.

Cleaning Mode

Here you can select the mode that Refiner operates in for cleaning your database. The options available are as follows:

Cleaning Mode Description
Default Attempts all matching methods to match the addresses in your database.
Verify Postcode Only Attempts to match addresses only by looking up the postcode and comparing it to the given street address. Although very fast (it avoids searching) where the Postcode is incorrect addresses will not be matched.
Full Match Only Normally if Refiner finds a property that is not in PAF but the address can be verified to street level it will return a Street Match and retain all original property information. 'Full Match Only' will not return data unless it can be fully matched to an address in PAF. i.e. a full Delivery Point match.
Attach Mode In attach mode the postcode is looked up and data is "attached" based on the postcode that is supplied. For more details see the Attach Mode section of this manual.

Field Options

The 'Target Fields' list on the left of this screen displays the fields in your database that will receive data output from Refiner. You have mapped Refiner fields to these fields and they will be written back to. For each 'Target Field' you can select from the list of conditioning options. This is particularly useful to tidy up data that can not be PAF matched. Using conditioning options does not affect Refiner's ability to clean data - it simply formats output data.

The options available for each field are as follows:

Conditioning Option Description
Format Name... This allows you to specify how you wish names in the source data to be formatted. This is only applicable to Name fields.
Initial From First Name Extracts an Initial from the First name (uses the first character). Only applicable for First Name fields
Expand Abbreviations Where address data cannot be matched, expands out abbreviations in the address line. e.g. Rd to Road and Ave to Avenue etc
Remove Directives (e.g.. c/o, via) Removes un-necessary directives from the address even when that data cannot be matched. (Address data matched to Royal Mail will be returned in it's postally correct form).
Remove Unwanted Lines Removes un-needed address lines e.g. Wales or Scotland
Cleanup Address Line General cleanup - removing general garbage from the field e.g. spurious commas and characters
Remove Repeat Address Lines Removes duplicated address lines
Capitalise Attempts to correctly capitalise the address field - e.g. "12 High Street"
Upper Case Forces the address field into all Upper Case - e.g. "12 HIGH STREET"
Maximum Line Length Specifies a maximum length for the field and Refiner will sensibly abbreviate to attempt to meet. Where not met, Refiner truncates to fit.

Process Options

For most uses Refiner will clean up your data correctly with it's default settings. However, if you have advanced requirements the "Advanced Settings" dialog includes additional settings for Refiner which should be used with care.

These are documented in the Advanced Settings section of this manual.


Refiner includes a de-duplication facility to enable duplicate records to be identified and / or removed from your database. Various criteria can be set to tailor de-duplication to your needs. You must map the 'Duplication Group' field from the 'Postcode Plus Field' List to a field in your database. Refiner will write a duplication key value to this during the cleaning process. At the end of the process Refiner will mark duplicates with the same duplication group number. All non-duplicating records will have a duplication group number of zero. Records sharing the same group number can later be checked and removed as necessary. Please note that you must move forwards through your database for this feature to work correctly.

To turn on de-duplication check the 'enable' box.

De-Duplication is not available for text files.

The options provided for the de-duplication process are as follows:

Option Description
Use Spelt Like Selecting this option takes account of minor typos and spelling errors when comparing records for de-duplication. This is useful when matching with property option selected on a database where many records are only matched to street level.
Use Sounds Like Selecting this option takes account of similar sounding data when comparing records for de-duplication. This can help with street level matches and organisation comparison but may lead to some mismatches.
Full DPS Matches Only Selecting this option will mean that only records that have been matched by Refiner to full DPS level (i.e. an exact PAF match) will be compared and marked for de-duplication.

The de-duplication process will always use the postcode. The Duplicate Postcode option can be combined with one or more of the additional fields displayed:

Field Option Description
Name Selecting the Name option will identify duplicate names on the same postcode... along with other selected options. A name field/s must be mapped for this feature to work. This selection provides a set of name options to chose from: Full Name, Surname, Surname and First name and Surname and Initial. If no name is supplied, other records with no name at that postcode will be taken as duplicates.
Organisation Selecting the Organisation option will identify duplicate Organisations on the same postcode. (records with no organisation are taken to be duplicate if all other options match).
Property Selecting the Property option will identify duplicates where the property is also a duplicate. It is recommended because it prevents identifying a record as a duplicate simply because another record on the same postcode happens to have the same details.
DPS Selecting the DPS option will identify duplicate records only if they share the same DPS i.e only those records that would go through the same letter box
Custom Field Selecting the Custom Field option allows you to choose any field from your database to use in the de-duplication process.

Duplication results are available from the Results tab from which a report can be viewed, printed and saved. Although duplicates may be deleted directly using Refiner, AFD recommend that you use the duplication group numbers to group and review duplicate records in your own database.

Saving Settings

Refiner automatically saves database settings, attachment information, and Conditioning options on exit. To maintain multiple configurations you can use 'Open Session' and 'Save As Session' from the File menu to save and retrieve settings. Refiner opens the last used session on start-up.

Processing Records

The Process tab (keyboard shortcut [Alt]+5) is used once you have completed setting up Refiner to clean your database records. You can at any time switch to the 'Settings' tab to change your settings.

Viewing records

Moving through the database in interactive mode (default) Refiner displays the original record (as read from your database) on the left of the screen and the suggested record on the right. Fields highlighted in red contain data that has not been matched and therefore has been copied over from the original record.

You can edit the displayed original record to help matching and modify the suggested address. Changes will only be written back to your database if you have selected 'Store Changes' from the Options menu. It is useful initially to review the Suggested Records created by Refiner, and use this to adjust your Settings accordingly before committing to store changes.

During processing, Refiner will use a variety of methods to assemble a suggested address from the Original Record. It will use the postcode if present, but will perform powerful quality checking to help ensure the postcode is sensible - and will use other parts of the address to generate a postcode where problems are found. A brief description of how the address was validated is shown on the Refiner status bar (beneath the tabs). If an address cannot be matched in it's entirety, Refiner will attempt to match to street level and if ambiguous will list possible options.

Fast Find Short Cut

A right mouse click on a Suggested Record field name initiates a Postcode Plus Fast Find search of the data in that field. The operator can accept a search result by highlighting the record in the Postcode Plus list box and clicking the 'Borrow' button on the Refiner Process screen. Remember too, that you can edit the Suggested Record field data manually before using the Fast Find short-cut.

Database Movement

To accept changes and move to the next or previous record (previous record not possible with Text databases), simply click the video-type movement buttons. No changes will be written to your file unless 'Store Changes' is checked on the Options menu.

Automatic Processing

Selecting 'Auto Process' from the Options menu instructs Refiner to verify and correct addresses without user intervention. By selecting 'Halt On No Match' from the Options menu, the automatic cleansing process will halt when an address cannot be automatically verified. Using this facility allows a one-pass process in which addresses are automatically verified wherever possible - and the operator deals with the remainder. This option can be selected or deselected at any time.

Before selecting 'Store Changes' from the 'Options' menu, an initial review of the Suggested Records created by Refiner and any necessary adjustment to settings is recommended. An attempt to start Automatic Processing without selecting 'Store Changes will result in a warning.

To protect you from serious mistakes in updating, Refiner will only auto-update records where it is reasonably confident that the result is sensible - otherwise records will not be changed. For example where the result is ambiguous it will not be written back to your database. By storing the Result Code to your database, these records can be extracted later for interactive processing.

Ambiguous Matches

Where refiner finds more than one possible address match, a list of possibilities will be presented. In the example below there are 4 postcodes at an identical property address. In automatic mode these suggested possibilities will not be written back to the database. However the relevant result code (-2 or -4) will be ready for any manual checking later. All fields mapped back to your database are shown so you can see what will be written back to your database and modify it if required. If you are uncertain of the address yourself we strongly recommend you select to keep the Original Record - the top entry in the list.

To retain the original record from the 'Ambiguous Match' dialog press Cancel or use the 'Esc' key or select and Accept '(Original Record)' from the list box. To accept and store another record, select it then press the Accept button, or press the return key. The 'Accept and Continue' button accepts the record (or Original Record if that is what is selected) and continues a halted Auto Process or moves to the next record in manual processing.

Ambiguous Postcodes are indicated by a result code of -2. Ambiguous address records are indicated by a result code of -4. Result codes and brief description appear in the Refiner tip bar.

Suggested Matches

An address may contain property and street level information that is unique in the country. However if the locality, town and postcode information do not match Refiner will not validate it. Instead it will present a suggested match for the address. This is displayed in interactive mode in the same way as an ambiguous match (shown above) but there will only be two items in the list - the original record and the suggested record. Operator common sense is used to make a sensible choice.

Reviewing Non-Matched Records

Selecting 'Review Non-matched Records' from the Options menu enables an interactive review of all records that could not be automatically cleaned. This option skips records that have already been automatically matched. When you select this option you will be presented with the following options to determine which type of records you wish to review:

The 'Jump To Record...' option, also on the Options menu, allows you to jump to the nth record in the order in which data was presented to refiner.

Result Codes

The result codes show to what level and how addresses have been matched:

Please note that result codes 202-205 and 302 are only applicable when the 'Assume Postcode Correct' option is used from the 'Options menu'. This option assumes the postcode given in the address is correct if the address cannot be verified any other way. This will result in a match on the property, postcode only or property and street information only unless other data suggests such a match would not be correct. Records with these result codes in this mode should be treated with caution as they are not completely reliable - that option is intended for databases sparse in data when a most likely address is better than no match at all.

  • 100 - Address verified from Postcode and matches a record in PAF (shown in Postcode Plus) identically.
  • 200 - Address verified from the Postcode and matches a record in PAF (shown in Postcode Plus) with some correction.
  • 201 - Address verified from a postcode which was substituted due to a Royal Mail recoding and now matches a record in PAF (shown in Postcode Plus).
  • 202 - Postcode, Property Match Assuming The Postcode Is Correct
  • 203 - Postcode, Property Match with Changed Postcode Assuming The Original Postcode Is Correct
  • 204 - Postcode Match with Non-Matched Property Added In
  • 205 - Postcode Match with Changed Postcode and Non-Matched Property Added In
  • 300 - Address verified to PAF (shown in Postcode Plus) with some correction, looking wider than just the specified Postcode.
  • 301 - Address verified to PAF (shown in Postcode Plus). Multiple PAF Organisations were listed as this address so the PAF Organisation has not been returned.
  • 302 - Limited DPS Match (Address verified to PAF but Locality or town information not present)
  • 400 - Address verified to Street Level, i.e. the property was not on PAF, but a unique match to the street was identified on a single postcode.
  • 700 - User Modified - You have modified this record yourself to correct it following Refiner's match attempt.
  • 702 - User Selected from a list of records due to a match with an ambiguous postcode
  • 703 - User Selected Refiner's Suggested Record (no match was made because there was insufficient data to reliably verify the address).
  • 704 - User Selected from a list of records due to multiple possible matches for the address.
  • -1 - No Match Found - Refiner has been unable to match this record.
    • -2 - Ambiguous Postcode Match - Refiner has matched this record to Street Level but cannot determine which is the correct Postcode and so has presented each of the possibilities.
  • -3 - Suggested Record Match - Refiner has found a unique possible match for this record but there is not enough address data to reliably match it.
  • -4 - Ambiguous Match. Refiner has given several possibilities that this address could match to.
  • -5 - This address was detected as being an International Address and therefore cannot be cleaned as data is only present for cleaning UK, Channel Isles and Isle of Man addresses.
  • -6 - No record data was supplied. Refiner cannot clean this address as no address data was given.
  • -7 - Data Initialisation Error. Check that Refiner is correctly registered by running the AFD Welcome Program.

DX Status Codes

For DX customers with a DX Enabled version of Refiner, the DX Status Field helps identify how reliable DX codes written out are and where existing codes have been retained if they need to be manually examined or corrected:

  • 100 - Confirmed DX match given in the source data matches this organisation at this address.
  • 200 - Identified the DX Number and Exchange for this organisation at this address.
  • 400 - Existing DX number retained and exists but not verified as being correct.
  • -1 - Supplied DX Number does not exist, so is likely to be incorrect unless it is Ex-Directory. -6 - No DX number found or supplied to match this organisation at this address.


Address list problems vary widely, as do the speeds of the computer systems used to carry out your cleaning operations. It is impossible, therefore to predict cleaning performance. The practice database is designed to have difficult addresses - which take much longer to look up than the average ones, so it would give a very pessimistic indication of actual throughput. Factors affecting performance include:


List cleaning is very disk-intensive. Choose equipment with a fast hard disk drive, and install all files (including Postcode Plus data files) on the local hard disk.

Operating Environment

Avoid placing additional load during the cleaning process by running other programs - or acting as a server on a network.


There are several steps you can take to make processing even faster for larger lists:

  1. Disk Optimisation - make sure that your disk drive is not badly fragmented - address list cleaning is more sensitive than most to this type of problem.
  2. Record Order - if you are able to sort your data record order so that processing takes place in Postcode order - even if your postcode records are incomplete, you will see significant speed improvements.
  3. Text Files - Processing of Text data is significantly faster than processing the proprietary file types like Access. If speed is very important, it may be quicker to export your data, process it then re-import it into your database program. Text files and dBase files are the most efficient (fastest) formats to use in Refiner, with Paradox coming a close third. If you choose to use delimited text files however you will lose some advanced functionality including Refiners ability to conduct SQL queries and the ability to use de-duplication so we would recommend fixed record length formats are used were possible.


The Results tab (keyboard shortcut [Alt]+6) shows statistics for the cleaning process and also allows you to save and print the report. When de-duplication is being used, the results can also be viewed here.

How Statistics are generated

Each record passed over interactively or automatically by Refiner is added to the totals. Moving back to re-process records will make the results inaccurate as records will be counted twice. For an accurate record count it is important to sequentially process records. The statistics shown are reset when you move to the start of your database or press the Reset button on the Results tab.

The Statistics Explained

Each of the statistics shown on the Results tab show the record count in the first box followed by the percentage of the total records.

Statistic Meaning Corresponding Result Code
Complete PAF Match Records matched identically to a record on PAF (The Royal Mail Postcode Address File) 100
Postcode Match Records matched to PAF from the Postcode. 200, 202, 204
... of which Changed Number of records that were Postcode matched after the Postcode was changed due to a Royal Mail Postcode recoding. 201, 203, 205
Full DPS Match Number of records that have been matched to a unique delivery point on PAF after ignoring the postcode 300, 301, 302
DPS Matched The total number of records that have been matched directly to a record in PAF to Delivery Point Level and therefore can be allocated a DPS (Delivery Point Suffix). Sum of 100's, 200's and 300's
Non-DPS Match The total number of records matched to PAF, but not to a specific delivery point. 400
Ambiguous Postcode Records which could be matched to street level but there is more than one possible Postcode for the address and the correct one could not be determined. No other address details vary. -2
Ambiguous Match Records which could not be matched to a unique address. Several possibilities have been given and one or more or none may be correct. The original record will be kept unless you select the correct address yourself. -4
Total Ambiguous The total number of records for which Refiner has been unable to determine the correct address to match to, but has given a set of possibilities. Sum of -2 and -4
User Cleaning The number of records the user has manually cleaned or modified during the cleaning process 700, 702, 703, 704
No Match Found The number of records that could not be matched (this includes those where Refiner has suggested a unique match but cannot reliably make that match) -1, -3
Total Non-Matched The total number of records that have not been cleaned in the database. Sum of -1 and 700's
Non UK Matched The number of records that could not be matched because they are obviously outside the UK, Isle of Man or Channel Islands (can only be determined if a recognised country is included in the address). -5
No Address Data The number of records that contain no address data to be cleaned -6
Excluded Records The total number of records that could not be cleaned because they did not include a UK address. Sum of -5 and -6
Records Processed Total number of records processed in the database.

Generating Reports

The statistics displayed on screen can be saved or printed as a report for reference outside of Refiner or as a permanent record. Pressing the Save button will prompt you for a filename. These are saved as CSV files (comma separated text) for easy manipulation and formatting in your own application or a package of your choice, such as Microsoft Excel. The first row gives the column headings and each subsequent row contains the statistics as shown on the screen. An example of this is:

"Statistic","Number of Records","Percentage of Records"
"Complete PAF Match","278","65.7%"
"Postcode Match","49","11.6%"
" ... of which Changed","0","0.0%"
"Full DPS Match","1","0.2%"
"DPS Matched","22.5%"
"Non-DPS Match","0","0.0%"
"Total Matches","22.5%"
"Ambiguous Postcode","0","0.0%"
"Ambiguous Match","0","0.0%"
"Total Ambiguous","0","0.0%"
"User Cleaned","0","0.0%"
"No Match Found","87","20.6%"
"Total Non-Matched","87","22.5%"
"International Address","2","0.5%"
"No Address Data","6","1.4%"
"Total Excluded Address","87","22.5%"
"Duplicate Records","0","0.0%"
"Duplication Groups","0",""
"Records Processed","423","100.0%"

Pressing the Print button will cause Refiner to print a formatted copy of the cleaning statistics. Please note the report is intended to be printed on A4 paper and reports on other paper sizes cannot be guaranteed to be satisfactory. You can select the Printer to use for the reports by selecting the 'Printer Setup' option from the File menu. Of course if you want more control over the style of report you print or you need it produced in a certain way saving to a CSV file instead will allow you to generate a report in the way you require.


When the De-Duplication process is used the results screen will show how many records are duplicates (Duplication Hits) and the number of Duplication Group (i.e. the number of sets of matching records). These figure are based on the criteria selected for de-duplication.

Pressing the View button will display a report showing each record that may be a duplicate of one or more other records. The example below shows the results of duplication based on postcodes:

To save a copy of this report as a CSV file, click Save. To print a copy of this report, click Print. Select the Printer to use for the reports by selecting the 'Printer Setup' option from the File menu on the main Refiner screen. Saving or printing a report can assist the process of removing unwanted duplicate records. The Group Numbers have been written to your database in the field you mapped as the Duplication Group field when you specified field mappings. This means duplicates may be processed and checked directly from your database management system.

Refiner also provides for duplicate record deletion. If your duplication criteria was sufficiently specified to only flag up genuine duplicates (usually means adding at least one other field on-top of the postcode) then you can delete all duplicate records shown (only the first record in each group is retained) by selecting the 'Delete Duplicates' button on this form. Before using this process, check the entries shown on this form are correctly identifying duplicates only. If necessary, refine the duplication criteria and run the process again. For more advanced processing of duplicates or selection of records for deletion either remove records manually using your database system or use your own process based on the Duplication Group field to remove records.


The Censation tab (keyboard shortcut [Alt]+7) is used to display the Censation Report based on the records processed by Refiner.

How Statistics are generated

Each record passed over interactively or automatically by Refiner has it's Censation Code checked to update the Censation report on this tab. This happens even if you have not opted to write the Censation data back to your database. Moving back to re-process records will make the results inaccurate as records will be counted twice. For an accurate record count it is important to sequentially process records. The statistics shown are reset when you move to the start of your database or press the Reset button on the Results or Censation tab.

The Statistics Explained

The Censation report can help gain insight into the type of categories those on your database fit into. Such as do they tend to be wealthy or struggling, do they tend to be young singles or families, etc. This could help you determine which type of customers it might be most effective to target or help you analyse those statistically most likely to purchase certain products and target them more effectively

Each of the statistics shown on the Censation tab show the record count in the first box followed by the percentage of the total records.

Statistic Meaning
Censation Code Rank This lists the top 12 Censation codes in your database and shows how many records are found in each one. It also shows how many records do not have a Censation code assigned (normally because they were not fully matched) or have another Censation code (not in the top 12). A Censation code is made up of the affluence indicator (first letter), life stage indicator (second letter) and the final two digits point to additional information relating to the code. More details about these codes can be found in the Postcode Plus manual Censation section.
Affluence Categories This shows the number and percentage of records in your database that fall into each of the Affluence Categories (Wealthy through to Struggling). Again more information can be found in the main Postcode Plus manual Censation section.
Life Stage This shows the number and percentage of records in your database that fall into each of the Life Stage Categories. You can select to view the Census Generated codes (those from Young Singles through to Empty Nests and Seniors that are generated from the census data), or the others that are generated from other data sources for area's not covered by the census. Again more information can be found in the main Postcode Plus manual Censation section.

Generating Reports

The statistics displayed on screen can be saved or printed as a report for reference outside of Refiner or as a permanent record. When saving or printing the Censation report all Censation codes are ranked (not just the top 12) and all Life Stage categories are shown. Pressing the Save button will prompt you for a filename. These are saved as CSV files (comma separated text) for easy manipulation and formatting in your own application or a package of your choice, such as Microsoft Excel. The first row gives the column headings and each subsequent row contains the statistics as shown on the screen. An example of this is:

"Censation Code Rank","","",""
"Position","Code","Number of Records","Percentage of Records"
"Affluence Categories","","",""
"Code","Description","Number of Records","Percentage of Records"
"N","Not Classified",6,"27.2%"
"Life Stage Categories","","",""
"Code","Description","Number of Records","Percentage of Records"
"V","Young Singles",2,"9.1%"
"W","Young Families",4,"18.2%"
"X","Older Families",1,"4.5%"
"Y","Empty Nests and Seniors",2,"9.1%"
"L","Many organisations mixed with low, transient population",6,"27.3%"
"M","Residential development with a high incoming population",0,"0.0%"
"N","Stable turnover of a high population mixed with a few organisations",0,"0.0%"
"O","Stable turnover of population mixed with commercial development",0,"0.0%"
"P","Established high residential population",0,"0.0%"
"Total Records","","22",""

Pressing the Print button will cause Refiner to print a formatted copy of the censation statistics. Please note the report is intended to be printed on A4 paper and reports on other paper sizes cannot be guaranteed to be satisfactory. You can select the Printer to use for the reports by selecting the 'Printer Setup' option from the File menu. Of course if you want more control over the style of report you print or you need it produced in a certain way saving to a CSV file instead will allow you to generate a report in the way you require.

Additional Censation Information

For more detailed information about Censation and how it works, what it's useful for, and what the codes mean please refer to the Censation section of the main Postcode Plus manual.

Additional Censation Information is also included in appendices G, H, I and J of that Manual:

Attach Mode

Refiner also includes a special Attach Mode. This is activated by selecting the 'Attach Mode' option on the settings tab.

In Attach Mode Refiner does not clean or verify any addresses it simply uses the Postcodes (already present in your database) to 'attach' or 'append' any of the data you select that is contained within Postcode Plus (such as Grid References). Clearly Attach Mode is only useful where addresses include accurate Postcodes. We recommend cleaning your database to obtain the best results and deliverable addresses. Attach Mode can also be used to process Postcode changes or to "back fill" address fields unique to a Postcode. e.g. a postcode which relates to a single address (like IM7 2DZ) will return a complete address; whereas a postcode which relates to a number of different addresses will return only the data common to all those addresses.

Please note that most advanced options such as de-duplication are not applicable when using Attach Mode. Field conditioning options (Settings tab) are limited to: specify the case (e.g. upper case or capitalised), maximum field length, and grid reference. These limited options are only available for the appropriate output fields.

Filling in the whole address from the property and postcode

You can also use Attach Mode to fill-in the rest of the address if you have data with only the postcode and property stored. It will match the property and return the whole address data. You should note that as the postcode is assumed to be correct the incorrect address may well be returned as postcodes can be mis-typed and the address has not been verified against any other elements. However in the case where you do not have any other data in your database but the property and postcode you may wish to use this to gain as many potentially correct addresses as you can.

To do this, select "Advanced Settings" from the "Settings" Tab and the "Assume original postcode is correct" option from the "Cleaning" tab.

Fields to use for Input and Output

From the Input tab map all fields which could contain the Postcode. Refiner will search all fields mapped for the postcode and look that up to provide the output data. Setting the name, organisation field etc. is therefore unnecessary for operation in this mode. If the Postcode is always in the same field only map that field.

From the Output tab map all the fields to be written back from a Postcode lookup. It may be helpful to map out the Result Code to identify which Postcodes could / not be matched. The Postcode itself can be mapped back out if you wish to write back any postcodes which have had typing errors corrected or which have changed following Royal Mail recoding.

Result Codes

The result code which is written to the Result Code field, if specified, in your database and displayed on screen on the Results tab. It is limited to the following values which differ slightly from their normal meaning:

Result codes 202-205 are only applicable if the 'Assume Postcode Correct' option is enabled. See the section 'Filling in the whole address from the property and postcode' above for more information.

  • 200 - Postcode was looked up and data attached.
  • 201 - Postcode was looked up and has changed. Data has been attached.
  • 202 Postcode was looked up and property data was also matched to it. Data has been attached.
  • 203 Postcode was looked up and has changed. Property data was also matched to it. Data has been attached.
  • 204 Postcode was looked up and non-matched property data has been added to the data attached.
  • 205 Postcode was looked up and has changed. Non-matched property data has been added to the data attached.
  • -1 - The specified Postcode was not found - it may have been removed from PAF or have been incorrectly entered originally.
  • -6 - No Postcode was supplied. Refiner examined all fields mapped in and did not find a Postcode in any of those fields.

Advanced Cleaning Settings

The Settings Tab (Shortcut Key [Alt]+4) includes an "Advanced Settings" button which allows you to configure some of the more advanced options related to Refiner cleaning.

In most cases the default settings are the best for cleaning data and will not need to be altered.

Note that you can reset Refiner cleaning settings to the defaults by selecting the "Reset To Default Settings" option on the File Menu.

Database Settings

These settings affect how data is written back to your database.

Retain any alias locality in the source address Where an address is fully matched to PAF, Refiner will write back the full correct postal address to your database. Sometimes, your address data might contain a locality which is not postally required, such as "Wimbledon", this will be removed should your address be matched as it does not form a necessary part of the address. Should you wish to retain such localities, as long as they are recorded by Royal Mail as a permisable locality alias, you can enable this option and Refiner will assume they are correct if given in the source data.

Never move source data to the Organisation field Normally Refiner will put additional address data for street level matches in the property or building field unless they look like an Organisation or there is already a property. Specifying this option ensures Refiner never returns such data in the Organisation field - useful if you are not writing that field back to your databases data (the data will instead always be added into the property field).

Write back an empty string rather than null for blank fields When using a Microsoft Access database or connecting to an ODBC source, it is assumed that where a field to be written out is blank a NULL should be assigned to that field as that is the normal convention with such database systems. However should you prefer, or your database system require, a blank string instead then selecting this option will force Refiner to output an empty string in such cases.

Write back a default DPS for street addresses The DPS is a delivery point suffix, used by Royal Mail to uniquely identify an individual property on a postcode and included in the customer barcode which can be printed on an envelope. This is most useful to customers who are cleaning data for the purposes of using Royal Mails customer barcode mailsort products. Where an address can only be matched to street level, no DPS is avaliable and so none will be written out. By selecting this option a default DPS (9Z) will be written out for such addresses allowing them to be included in such sortations. However, please note that Royal Mail will be enforcing a minimum requirement that means that the vast majority of addresses in your data will need to have a full accurate DPS, not a default one, to be eligible.

Cleaning Settings

These settings affect the way in which Refiner matches your data.

Do not attempt to format fields for unmatched addresses**

Where Refiner cannot match an address it will attempt to logically format your source address into the output fields automatically. For example something ending Street will be placed in the Street field, something that looks like the postcode would go into the postcode field etc. If you are writing data out to the same number of fields as are present in the source address and the format of the original data is already good you may prefer to retain your existing address format in such cases. Selecting this option will cause Refiner to simply write out your source address data fields in order in your destination fields should it be unable to find a match (or leave it alone if you are writing back to the same fields).

Assume source data does not contain field separators

Refiner normally expects to find each address element in a seperate field, for example the street in one field, the town in another, etc. Where this is not the case it would expect to find a separator, such as a comma, delimiting each address element in a field. Should these delimiters often be missing, e.g. you have the street and town all in one field with only a single space between each one and nothing to determine where one field starts and another one ends then using this option will allow Refiner to be able to match the address. Note that this option should only be used were your database requires it as the number of extra searches this requires means that speed of processing will be severely increased.

Match to PO Box only after trying a physical address match

Sometimes an address may contain elements of both a PO Box and a geographical address. In many cases only one of these may be correct and matchable, however sometimes they both could be and Refiner will attempt to match the PO Box address first in such cases. If you prefer physical addresses selecting this option will force Refiner to try and match a physical address first. Note that you will still get a PO Box match if no geographical address can be matched.

Assume original postcode is correct

Refiner uses advanced matching algorithms to find the correct match for your address while also ensuring that incorrect matches should not be given. In some cases your address data may have many fields missing, for example were only the property details and postcode have been captured, that means that very few addresses can be properly matched. In such cases if you are fairly certain of the accuracy of the postcodes held in your database you can select the option to direct Refiner to make an assumption that the original postcode is correct where a match cannot otherwise be made. This option is risky as you will obtain the wrong address should the postcode be incorrect so should only be used for non-sensitive uses of address data were it still has value even if some data is incorrectly matched. When used with attach mode you simply need to map in the property and postcode and the other fields will be attached based on those. When used with the default cleaning mode Refiner will still try to obtain a fully accurate match first, but if that cannot be made it will assume the postcode is given is correct and attempt a match on that basis.

Ambiguous Settings

When Refiner cannot make a unique match, an ambiguous one can sometimes be made instead, for user review. These settings allow you to switch off or adjust when such results are given.

Do not return ambiguous results (return no match instead) Where Refiner cannot make an exact match, but can determine several possible correct matches, an ambiguous match will be given which allows the user to manually select the correct result if that can be determined through manual review of the record. In an automatic cleaning process the result code will indicate that the record is ambigious but the original record will be retained, so this option makes little difference other than the exact result code returned. However if you do not wish to be advised of ambiguous matches you can enable this option.

Do not suggest un-verifiable matches (return no match instead) In cases where in-sufficient address data has been supplied for Refiner to make an exact address, it is sometimes possible for Refiner to suggest a match due to their being a unique match to the data supplied. In such cases Refiner cannot confirm the match automatically as it may not necessarily be the correct one, but in the course of a manual process a user might be able too. Like ambiguous matches these will never be written back to the database in an automatic process, they have to be reviewed by the user. If you do not wish Suggested Matches to be returned you can select this option.

Ambiguous match is preferable to a street level only match In some cases a match is ambiguous if matched to property level, but Refiner can return a street level match retaining the existing property information instead. This is normally preferred as with large databases the more that can be reliably cleaned automatically the more the savings in terms of user time. However, if you are manually checking records you might prefer to see the ambiguous matches in such cases to see if you can locate the correct result with human insight and so turning this option on will enable you to do so.

Grid References

This allows you to change the options for how Grid References and Latitude and Longitude values are returned.

Display Grid References

By default British grid references are used for British postcodes and Irish Grids for Irish postcodes. However in some cases you might wish to standardise on one or the other, for example when comparing distances between them. So, using Grid Reference Options you can select to always use either GB (British) or NI (Irish) grid references.

Where a grid reference is not available for a Postcode, there is an option to use an approximate grid reference for the locality or town. This is of course a lot less precise, but may be more useful than a blank grid reference for uses such as finding distances, locating an address on the Map etc.

Grid Reference Resolution

Unless you have purchased 1m grids, grid references are supplied to a 100m resolution. However you can choose if these are displayed as a 5 digit or 6 digit grid reference depending on the form that you need for the data. A 6 digit grid (usually 6 digits for both the northing and easting values) is capable of displaying 1m grids if required.

Latitude and Longitude Display

For latitude and longitude you can choose to use either the decimal value or a value made up of the degrees, minutes and seconds. Generally a decimal value is more useful for storing in your database to manipulate in other programs, but the degrees value is more easily readable when presented to an end user.

For more information about Grid References see the Grid References Appendix.

Programming With Refiner

The AFD Common API (Application Programming Interface)

AFD Products come with a fully functional easy to use Common API which enabled developers to integrate our products into most environments. The DLL's required to access our data through the API ships as standard with all our products. A full SDK kit, which includes full documentation, example generation, and code to integrate into your own application is available for free download from our website.

Using our Common API you can develop for one of our address management products (e.g. Names & Numbers) and the same application will also function with our Postcode and Postcode Plus products.

For further information regarding our API, please visit


Appendix A: Formatting a PAF Address for Printing


These notes are provided to assist developers using AFD's Postcode Plus data via library calls, to re-create a correctly formatted postal address. Invariably, real-world computer databases seldom have sufficient fields available for the 'official' structure, so the Postcode Plus program makes sensible assumptions, whilst following these rules so far as possible. By accessing the data through the libraries, however, you have access to all the address elements in their raw state (except that the 'Thoroughfare' data already has its descriptors concatenated with the Thoroughfare name) so you can create your own address format as required.

A delivery point is composed of a combination of the following elements. Not all elements are present for each delivery point. Postcode and Post Town are the only two elements that are mandatory. County is no longer required as part of a correct postal address where the postcode is correctly given.

Organisation elements Organisation Name
Department Name
Premise Elements Subbuilding Name
Building Name
Building Number
Thoroughfare elements Dependent Thoroughfare Name
Dependent Thoroughfare Descriptor
Thoroughfare Name
Thoroughfare Descriptor
Locality Elements Double Dependent Locality Name
Dependent Locality Name
Post Town
Postcode element Postcode
PO Box element PO Box Number
Organisation Name

If present, this should appear on the first address line.

Department Name

If present, this should appear on the second line.

PO Box Number

If present, this should appear on the first line if no Organisation/department details are present, else it should appear on the third line.

The following combinations of these elements may occur.

Rule Sub-Building Name Building Name Building Number
1 N N N
2 N N Y
3 N Y N
4 N Y Y
5 Y N Y
6 Y Y N
7 Y Y Y

When a Building Name or a Subbuilding Name is present, then the format of the name can determine the position of the name in the address. (See Note).

Rule 1. Organisation Name

This condition may occur when an Organisation Name is used to uniquely identify a delivery point.

Rule 2. Building Number Only

The Building number should appear at the beginning of the first Thoroughfare line. If there is no Thoroughfare information, then the Building number should appear at the beginning of the first Locality line.

Rule 3. Building Name Only

Check format of Building Name (see Note).

If a Format 1 Building Name

the Building Name should appear at the beginning of the first Thoroughfare line, or the first Locality line if there is no Thoroughfare information.


the Building Name should appear on a line preceding the Thoroughfare and Locality information.

When a building has a name and a number range, both must be held in the Building Name field because the Building Number field will only allow numeric characters to be held. Rule 3 will still apply to this.

Rule 4. Building Name and Building number

The Building Name should appear on the line preceding the Thoroughfare and/or Locality information.

The Building Number should appear at the beginning of the first Thoroughfare line. If there is no Thoroughfare information, then the Building Number should appear at the beginning of the first Locality line.

Rule 5 Sub-building Name and Building number

The Sub-building Name should appear on the line preceding the Thoroughfare and Locality information.

The Building number should appear at the beginning of the first Thoroughfare line. If there is no Thoroughfare information, then the Building number should appear at the beginning of the first Locality line.

Rule 6 Sub-building Name and Building name

Check format of Subbuilding Name (see Note).

If a Format 1 Subbuilding Name

the Subbuilding Name should appear on the same line as and before the Building Name.


the Subbuilding Name should appear on a line preceding the Building Name, Thoroughfare and Locality information.

Check format of Building Name (see Note).

If a Format 1 Building Name

the Building Name should appear at the beginning of the first Thoroughfare line, or the first Locality line if there is no Thoroughfare information


the Building Name should appear on a line preceding the Thoroughfare and Locality information.

End if

Rule 7 Sub-building Name, Building Name and Building Number

Check format of Subbuilding Name (see Note).

If a Format 1 Subbuilding Name

the Subbuilding Name should appear on the same line as and before the Building Name


the Subbuilding Name and the Building Name should appear on separate lines

End if

The Building number should appear at the beginning of the first Thoroughfare line, or the first Locality line if there is no Thoroughfare information.


Checking the format of Subbuilding Name or Building Name

Certain of these names can appear on the same line as other address elements. These are called Format 1 names in the address formatting rules. They are identified by:

i. First and Last characters of the Name are numeric

ii. First and penultimate characters are numeric, last character is alphabetic

This covers names like:



81 & 85

Appendix B: Command Line Options

The following entries can be added as part of the 'Target' or 'Command Line' when launching Refiner, allowing you to specify your preferences for a particular use of the program and automate the cleaning process:

/Minimise=Yes Refiner will load minimised when this is specified
/Session=default.rfr Specifies the Session File to be loaded if 'default.rfr' in the Refiner folder. You can specify the full path to the session file if desired. By default Refiner opens the last session used.
/Auto=1 Providing the database opens correctly an automatic process runs on the database as soon as Refiner loads. Please note this requires the session to have been correctly set-up with the processing options you wish to use first.
/Auto=2 As above but Refiner exits following the auto process run
/Splash=No Suppresses the display of the Splash Screen when loading
/Tab=6 Sets Tab 6 (the Results Tab) to be displayed after loading. By default Refiner opens on the last tab used.

These commands can be executed from the Start Menu, Run by typing something similar to the text below into the the Run box. . .

c:\pcplus\refiner.exe  /Splash=No /Session=Default.rfr /Auto=1 /Minimise=Yes /Tab=6

Appendix C: Keyboard Shortcuts

Function Shortcut Key
Automatic Process [Ctrl] + A
Begin Processing Records [Alt] + P
Borrow current record from Postcode Plus [Alt] + B
Cancel Processing [Alt] + C
Censation Tab [Alt] + 7
Copy current field to Clipboard [Ctrl] + [Insert]
Copy full record to clipboard [Ctrl] + F
Close Refiner [Alt] + [F4]
File Menu [Altl] + F
Help [F1]
Help menu [Alt] + H
Input Tab [Alt] + 2
Open Database [Ctrl] + D
Open Session [Ctrl] + O
Open Tab [Alt] + 1
Options Menu [Alt] + O
Output Tab [Alt] + 3
Paste current Clipboard contents to field [Shift] + [Insert]
Paste full record from clipboard [Ctrl] + H
Process Tab [Alt] + 5
Results Tab [Alt] + 6
Save current settings [Ctrl] + G
Settings Tab [Alt] + 4
View Menu [Alt] + V

Appendix D: Grid References in AFD Products

Grid References

Grid Reference data is primarily sourced from Ordnance Survey for distance calculations, nearest calculations and data / location analysis. It is made up of a six digit Easting and a six digit Northing. This reference relates the location of the Postcode to the National Grid (or Irish Grid for Northern Ireland Postcodes (start with BT)).

Background to Data

England, Wales and Scotland

The largest units of the National Grid are 500km squares, each designated by a prefix letter - the first letter to be quoted in the National Grid reference.

The 500km squares are then broken down into twenty five - 100km squares; these are also designated by a prefix letter - the second letter of the grid reference.

Within the 100km square, each smaller grid square (at 10km, 1 km, or 100m side) is designated by the distance of its South-West corner from the West (Eastings) and South (Northings) margins, respectively, of the 100km square in which it lies.

To enable these distances, or co-ordinates, to be easily found, their values are printed in the map margins against the grid lines concerned. These provide the numbers - two, four or six digits - which identify each particular grid square.

e = easting     n = northing
S   K   1   2
e   n

shows a point 10,000m East and 20,000m North of the South West corner of the SK square.

S   K   1   3   5   2   4   6
e   e   e   n   n   n

Shows a point 13,500m East and 24,600m North of the South West corner of the SK square.

A point or feature, within one of the smallest grid squares, can be indicated still more closely by estimating the tenths of the appropriate grid square.

When giving a National Grid reference, for any point, the distance Eastwards (Eastings) is always given before the distance Northwards (Northings).

Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland is covered by the Irish Grid System, which contains a single alpha character to represent each 100km square. There are 5 such 100km squares covering Northern Ireland using the letters: C D G H J.

This, however, makes the distance difficult, so AFD products automatically convert the Irish grid system to British system to allow distances / nearest to be correctly calculated. You can opt to convert all grid references to use the British or Irish Grid systems to provide consistency across the whole UK and these options are available in the front-end and developers can gain access to these conversions through the Common API.

Isle of Man, Channel Islands and other postcodes where Grid References are not available (e.g. PO Boxes)

No Grid References are available for these postcodes but to enable them to be used with the Map and Nearest facilities of AFD Products, grid references for the centre of the locality/town have been hard coded. PO Boxes are non-geographic (being located in the Post Office) hence having no grid reference. You can also opt to use these locality/town hard coded values generally in the Front-end and they are accessible through the Common API for developers. In large cities these approximations can be quite far out as the values given are for the centre of that city and not the postcode you selected. However this may be more useful than no grid reference at all to assist in distance calculations or locating somewhere on the map.

Latitude & Longitude

To enable these Grid References to be used with GPS systems and other tools requiring latitude and longitude values AFD Products provide a conversion to latitude and longitude values for a grid reference which is displayed in the front end and can be inserted into your application. Developer's can gain access to these conversions through the Common API. The latitude and longitude values given are based on the WGS84 standard - the one in most common usage with GPS systems. The conversions used are accurate to within 5 metres (the worst case scenario at locations with most distortion). But remember that a grid references at postcode level may cover a wide area especially in rural areas.

Appendix E: End User Licence Agreement



IMPORTANT! This agreement, together with the documents referred to in it, sets out the terms and conditions (the “Agreement”) which govern your use of the Product as defined below. It constitutes the entire agreement between the parties and supersedes all prior verbal and written discussion, agreements, understandings, representations, conditions and all other communications between the parties in relation to this matter.

Please read the Agreement carefully before entering the Site or subscribing to or making use of the Product. You may wish to retain this Agreement for your future reference.

The Product is not sold; it is licensed. The Product is and remains the property of AFD Software Ltd (“the Company”) or other third parties and is protected by copyright laws and international copyright treaties.

By in any way installing, copying or otherwise using the Product or any part thereof, you agree to be bound by the terms of this Agreement. If you do not agree to the terms of this Agreement, do not install or otherwise and in any way use the Product or any part thereof but return it to your supplier within fifteen (15) days for a full refund.


    • In this Agreement the following words and expressions shall have the following meanings:

    • “Annual License Renewal” means the latest version of the Product or any part of it;

    • “Annual License Renewal Fee” means the annual license renewal fee (if any) payable by you pursuant to clause 3.1 as published by the Company in respect to the Product from time to time;

    • “Authorised User” shall mean any individual who is employed or engaged under contract as part of your staff, whether on a temporary, permanent, or visiting basis and whom you wish to authorise to have access to the Product or any part thereof;

    • “Bureau Services” shall mean all services operated by the Licensee in respect of the processing of information or data which is owned or controlled by another person, company, organisation or body, including (without limitation) companies in the same group as the Licensee or any other associated organisation.

    • “Computer” means any computer, terminal or workstation owned or used by you;

    • “Effective Date” means the date of commencement of this License as printed on the License Certificate;

    • “First Year Data License Fee” means the data license fee (if any) payable by you pursuant to clause 3.1 as published by the Company in respect to the Product from time to time;

    • “Initial License Period” means the period of twelve months from the Effective Date or such other period as may be notified by the Company to you in the License Certificate or Appendix to this Agreement or otherwise;

    • “Insolvency” means in respect a Licensee the presentation of a petition for winding-up, bankruptcy, or administration or the convening of a meeting for the purpose of considering the same, the convening by the Licensee of a meeting of its creditors, or the appointment of a trustee, receiver, administrative receiver or similar officer in respect of all or any part of the business and assets of the Licensee;

    • “Intellectual Property” means the text, graphics, images and other material, and the organisation thereof and trademarks, software, copyrights, patents, trade secrets, processes and methods, know-how and other intellectual property rights embodied in or incorporated in the Product, and any tangible copies and expressions thereof;

    • “License” means the license granted to you pursuant to this Agreement and the License Certificate;

    • “License Certificate” means the certificate sent or to be sent by the Company to you granting a license to you to use the Product in accordance with this Agreement and references in this Agreement to the “Agreement ” shall include the License Certificate;

    • “Licensed Computers” means the number of Computers on which the Product may be accessed pursuant to this Agreement as set out in the License Certificate;

    • “License Period” means the Initial License Period and thereafter whilst this Agreement is continuing;

    • “Monthly Fee” means the fee payable by you pursuant to clause 3.3 as published by the Company in respect to the Product from time to time;

    • “Network” means any electronic communication between two or more computer terminals linked together through computer software and/or telecommunication satellite cable or broadcasting services or through any other medium now known or hereinafter invented;

    • “Person” means any person, firm, company, institution, organisation or other legal entity throughout the world;

    • “Product” means the product(s) Licensed by the Company pursuant to this Agreement as set out on the License Certificate(s) and shall include all computer software, the data supplied with it, any associated media, electronic documentation and printed materials and if applicable any Site;

    • “Product Update” means an updated version of the Product or any part of it;

    • “Program License Fee” means the fee (if any) payable by you pursuant to clause 3.1 as published by the Company in respect to the Product from time to time;

    • “Site” means any website supporting the Product;

    • “you” or “your” means the Licensee under this Agreement as stated on the License Certificate.


    2.1 The Company hereby grants to you the non-exclusive right for the License Period to install one copy of the Product on the Licensed Computers only on the terms and subject to the conditions set out in this Agreement and (if the License Certificate so states) the Royal Mail Terms which (if applicable) may be obtained from or viewed at the website address given on the License Certificate. The Product may not be accessed and used or shared between or in any way accessed and used from, either on or off Network, any Computers, other than the Licensed Computers irrespective of whether such access or use is concurrent.

    2.2 If you intend to install, use or access the Product on or from more than the number of Licensed Computers or to share the Product between or in any way access it from, either on or off Network, more than the Licensed Computers then separate License Agreement(s) relating to the number of such other Computers intended to carry the Product or any part thereof must first be entered into with the Company.

    2.3 The Company shall be entitled to sell or grant Licenses of the Product or any part thereof to any Person and nothing herein contained shall prevent the Company from compiling contributing to, publishing, marketing or licensing any other product in any way similar to the Product.

    2.4 You shall have the right to load and store the Product on the Licensed Computers only and subject to the provisions of this Agreement to give access from the Licensed Computers to the Product only to Authorised Users.


    3.1 In consideration of the License granted to you under this Agreement you shall, pay to the Company on receipt of the invoice in respect thereto the Program License Fee, the First Year Data License Fee and on each Annual License Renewal the Annual License Renewal Fee(s) in each case at the Company’s prevailing price for such fees in respect of the Product from time to time.

    3.2 If elected by you prior to the commencement of this Agreement instead of the payments set out in clause 3.1 above you may in consideration of the License granted to you under this Agreement pay the Monthly Fee to the Company and you shall sign and effect a Direct Debit/Standing Order in such form as the Company may require for the amounts payable by you in respect of the Monthly Fee from time to time.

    3.3 All fees (save for the Monthly Fee, which is stated inclusive of Value Added Tax) payable pursuant to this Agreement are stated by the Company exclusive of Value Added Tax which, if payable, shall be paid by you on presentation of an appropriate VAT invoice.

    3.4 If you default in making payment of any sum payable by you pursuant to this Agreement then the Company shall be entitled (without prejudice to any other right or remedy it may have) to charge you interest on the outstanding sums at the rate of 2% per annum above Barclays Bank Plc’s base rate in force from time to time from the date the payment became due until actual payment is made (irrespective of whether the date of payment is before or after any judgement or award is made).

    3.5 If you default in making payment of any sum payable by you pursuant to this Agreement then the Company shall also be entitled to deny you access to The Product until outstanding fees have been paid in full, and shall not be responsible for any loss or damage you may suffer in consequence. It is expressly agreed that you will continue to remain bound by all the obligations of this Agreement during the period that access to The Product is so denied, including notice periods, annual License Renewals and further fees payable.

    3.6 The Company may increase any fees payable pursuant to this Agreement at any time after having provided you with three calendar months notice thereof prior to any such increase.


    You shall not:

    • (i) transfer the Product from the Computer it was originally installed on or load it on to any other Computer without having made a prior written request of the Company for permission to do so which permission may be refused in the Company’s absolute discretion;

    • (ii) reverse engineer, decompile or disassemble the Product in any way;

    • (iii) separate the component parts of the Product for use on more than one Computer;

    • (iv) retain or make any copies of the Product other than the Product as provided to you by the Company pursuant to the terms of this Agreement and for a copy to be used for back-up purposes only;

    • (v) extract Postcode Address File Data or AFD Data from the Product other than as part of the bona fide address management task you undertake or unless the prior consent of the Company has been obtained in writing display the Product on the internet or elsewhere or make it available to anyone other than an Authorised User;

    • (vi) without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing, do anything with the Product which is in breach of or otherwise inconsistent with the moral rights of the Company;

    • (vii) post or transmit through the Product or the Site any material which violates or infringes in any way upon the rights of others, which is unlawful, threatening, abusive, defamatory, invasive of privacy or publicity rights, vulgar, obscene, profane or otherwise objectionable, which encourages conduct that would constitute a criminal offence, give rise to civil liability or otherwise violate any law, or which, without the Company’s express prior approval, contains advertising or any solicitation with respect to products or Products; or take any action which the Company in its absolute discretion considers will restrict or inhibits any other Person from using or enjoying the Product.


    5.1 If you have not elected to pay the Monthly Fee the Company shall provide you with quarterly Product Updates for the duration of this Agreement only at your specific request and at the prevailing cost for such Product Updates. It is an express condition of this Agreement that, if you have not elected to pay the Monthly Fee, you will in any event obtain an Annual License Renewal from the Company no less frequently than once in every calendar year whilst this Agreement is continuing (or such other frequency as may be notified to you by the Company in the License Certificate or otherwise) at the prevailing price for such Annual License Renewal at the time of such purchase.

    5.2 If you have elected to pay the Monthly Fee you will be sent Product Updates as and when available.

    5.3 Any Product support requested by you will be provided free of charge during normal working hours of 9am-5pm Monday - Friday (excluding holidays) by either Internet Electronic Mail (e-mail), World Wide Web (www) publications and documentation or telephone. Any further or subsequent Product support is chargeable at a fee agreed by you and the Company from time to time.

    5.4 Any supplemental software provided by the Company to you as part of or in the course of despatching and providing Product support or in providing Product Updates or Annual License Renewals shall be provided to you at one address only (being the address set out in the License Certificate) and shall be considered part of the Product and the installation or use thereof will be subject to the terms and conditions of this Agreement.


    6.1 This clause 6 shall apply where access to the Product and any Site is by means of HTML requests across the internet.

    6.2 If you have not received a serial number and password from the Company after subscribing to the Product, you may not use the Site. You agree that you will not at any time disclose, transfer or permit any other person to use your serial number and password. You are responsible for taking all reasonable steps to ensure that no unauthorised person shall have access to your serial number and password. It is your sole responsibility to:

    (i) control the dissemination and use of serial number and password;

    (ii) authorise, monitor and control access to and use of your account and serial number and password; and

    (iii) promptly notify the Company of any need to reset or deactivate your serial number and password.

    The Company reserves the right to freeze or terminate accounts that do not conform to these requirements.


    7.1 This Agreement shall commence on the Effective Date and shall remain in effect for the Initial License Period and thereafter unless terminated in accordance with this Agreement. In the event this Agreement is not renewed this Agreement shall terminate at the end of the Initial License Period or the relevant anniversary of it.

    7.2 At the end of the Initial License Period and at each anniversary of the Effective Date this Agreement shall automatically renew for 12 months unless you shall previously have given written notice, to the Company at least one month but not more than three months prior to the expiration of the Initial License Period or each subsequent anniversary of the Effective Date of your intention not to renew the Agreement.

    7.3 The Company shall have the right to immediately terminate this Agreement in the event of any conduct by you which the Company, in its sole discretion, considers to be unacceptable, or pursuant to clause 8 below or in the event of your breach of this Agreement or your Insolvency.

    7.4 In the event this Agreement shall terminate for any reason whatsoever you shall return the Product to the Company and you shall also delete or cause to be deleted the Product from any and all computer-readable versions and shall provide the Company with a certificate attesting to such deletion.


    8.1 The Company shall have the right at any time, without notice, to change, suspend, discontinue, withhold or refuse access to any aspect or feature of the Product or the Site, including, but not limited to, content, hours of availability and equipment and software needed for access or use. The Company may also impose limits on certain features and Products or restrict your access to parts or the entire Product or Site without notice or liability on its part.

    8.2 The Company reserves the right at any time to withdraw the Product or any part thereof or terminate this Agreement if the Company ceases, for whatever reason, or no longer retains the right to License the Product or any part thereof, or if, in the Company’s sole discretion and on reasonable grounds believes that the Product or any part thereof contains any material which infringes copyright or is defamatory, obscene, unlawful, or otherwise objectionable. The Company will in event of such withdrawal give written notice to you and you shall, on receipt of such notice, immediately comply with any of the Company’s reasonable instructions with respect to such withdrawn Product.

    8.3 Should the Company permanently or for a continuous period of seven days or more withdraw the Product or the Site or terminate this Agreement pursuant to clauses 8.1 or 8.2, a refund of any of the fees paid pursuant to this Agreement will be refunded pro rata to you.

    8.4 The Company may at its sole discretion at any time and without warning withdraw from you or withhold the Product to you or terminate this Agreement if your activities are considered by the Company in its absolute discretion to be inappropriate or unlawful.


    The Company may wish to identify you in its marketing materials as a subscriber or licensee of the Product. Your use of the Product indicates our permission for the Company to use your personal data in this manner unless you notify the Company otherwise, in writing, within five business days of the date of the License Certificate.


    The Company shall have the right at any time to change or modify the terms of this Agreement and the terms and conditions applicable to your use of the Product, or any part thereof, or to impose new conditions, including, but not limited to, changing fees and charges for use. Such changes, modifications, additions or deletions shall be effective immediately upon the Company giving notice thereof (save where otherwise specifically provided in this Agreement), which may be given by means including, but not limited to, posting on the Site, or by electronic or conventional mail, or by any other means by which you obtain notice thereof. Your continued use of the Product or the Site after such notice shall be deemed to constitute acceptance of such changes, modifications or additions.


    You acknowledge and agree that any communications made to or by means of any portion of the Site are public. You acknowledge that:

    • (i) you have no expectation of privacy in any communication; and

    • (ii) no confidential, fiduciary, contractually implied or other relationship is created between you and the Company by reason of your transmitting a communication to any area of the Site or through the Product.


    12.1 The Product is the property of the Company or the subject of a license to the Company and is protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws. It is expressly understood and agreed that all of the Intellectual Property is and will continue to be the exclusive property of the Company and/or its suppliers and/or its associated companies or entities. By using the Product and accessing the Intellectual Property, you agree that you will not take any action inconsistent with the Company’s or its suppliers’ or associated companies or entities’ ownership rights and that you will abide by the copyright law and all other applicable international laws in general and the laws of England in specific with respect to such Intellectual Property. Details of the copyright to which the Product is subject is set out on the License Certificate.

    12.2 You shall take all necessary measures to safeguard the Intellectual Property and proprietary rights of the Company and its suppliers and associated companies and entities in the Product and without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing shall ensure that:

    • (i) each and every part of the Product used by you or any Authorised User in accordance with the License shall be clearly identified as being an extract of the Product;

    • (ii) you will keep the License Certificate confidential and divulge it only to Authorised Users;

    • (iii) you use your best efforts to ensure that Authorised Users abide by the terms and conditions of this Agreement and in particular but without limitation do not reproduce, redistribute, retransmit, publish or republish or otherwise commercially or in any other way exploit the Product save only as permitted under the terms of this Agreement;

    • (iv) you monitor compliance by each Authorised User with the terms of this Agreement and immediately on becoming aware of any unauthorised use by an Authorised User of the Product or any part thereof or other breach of this Agreement take all reasonable steps both to ensure that such Authorised User ceases such activity and to prevent any recurrence of it including where necessary by terminating that Authorised User’s access to the Product or any part thereof;

    • (v) you use your best efforts to ensure that only Authorised Users are permitted access to and use of the Product;

    • (vi) you maintain all copyright notices relating to the Product on all copies of or on any part of the Product held under your control; and

    • (vii) comply with all applicable law as it relates to the use or access of the Product.

    12.3 Unless expressly agreed by the Company you shall not:

    • (i) alter, modify, delete, conceal, obscure, remove or otherwise tamper with the trade marks, trade names, numbers, copyright or other proprietary legends or designations of origin or other means of identification notices or disclaimers used on or in relation to the Product from time to time;

    • (ii) do, or authorise any Authorised User or other Person to do any act which would or might invalidate or be inconsistent with any Intellectual Property of the Company in the Product and shall not omit or authorise any third party to omit or do any act which by its omission would have that effect or character.


    The Company owns the copyright or has had Licensed to it all Intellectual Property, and unauthorised copying of any Intellectual Property is prohibited. Subject to this Agreement, the Company grants to you, whilst your subscription to the Product subsists, a limited License to download the Product, data files, installation software, example and instruction pages and web building templates for the sole purpose of enabling you to make use of the Product in accordance with this Agreement and where applicable have access to the Site. No other licensing rights are granted.


    14.1 The Company warrants that it has the right to license the rights granted to you under this Agreement and that the Product will perform substantially in accordance with the description of the Product provided to you for a period of 90 days from the date of receipt of the Product by you. No other warranties are given by the Company.

    14.2 The Company’s (and its agents, employees, suppliers’ and/or any other third party associated with or in the employ of the Company) total liability under this Agreement, if any, will be limited to the equivalent of one month’s fees paid up by you for the Product.

    14.3 The warranties set out in this clause 14 are in lieu of all warranties, conditions, terms, undertakings, and obligations implied by statute, common law, custom, trade usage, course of dealing, or otherwise, all of which are hereby excluded to the fullest extent permitted by law.



    • (i) use of the Product and the Site is at your sole risk. The Company does not warrant that Product or the Site will be uninterrupted or error free;

    • (ii) although the Company has attempted to provide accurate information on the Product or Site to you, the Company does not assume any responsibility for, or make any representation with respect to the accuracy or completeness of such information. You acknowledge that You are relying on your own judgement and skill to determine the suitability of the Product and its License or Site and its License for Your purposes and do not rely on any advice or recommendation that the Company may have provided to you;

    • (iii) the Product or Site is provided “AS IS,” and the Company expressly disclaims any implied or expressed warranties or conditions of any kind (except for the warranty provided in clause 14 above), including warranties of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose or non-infringement of intellectual property relating to such Product;

    • (iv) you specifically acknowledge that the Company is and will not be liable for any defamatory, offensive or illegal conduct by you or other third party as it relates to the Site and the Product;

    • (v) the Company and its associated companies and entities, suppliers and agents shall not be liable for any infection by any virus or damage to any computer that results from the use, access to the Product or the Site or downloads of any Intellectual Property therefrom;

    • (vi) the Company shall not be liable or responsible for any loss or damage caused in whole or in part by the occurrence of any contingency beyond the control of the Company, including but not limited to fires, civil unrest, riots, rebellions, accidents, explosions, interruptions or imperfections in telephone cables or computer systems, network or internet disruptions, electrical disturbances, power failures, satellite malfunctions or interruptions, floods, storms or any similar act or act of God;

    • (vii) in no event shall the Company its associated companies and entities, suppliers or agents be liable for any damages whatsoever, including (without limitation, special, indirect, consequential or accidental damages, including, without limitation, damages resulting from the use or reliance on the information presented, loss of profits or revenues or cost of replacement of goods save as provided in clause 14 above;

    • (viii) compliance with data protection laws applying in any jurisdiction where the Product is used by you or otherwise applying to you shall be your sole responsibility and you hereby warrant to the Company that you have and will comply with all such data protection laws in connection with your use of the Product;

    • (ix) you will provide the Company with all information reasonably requested by it within 7 days of a request by the Company requesting such information and on request provide facilities to the Company during business hours to inspect at your premises any records, documents and Computers in each case for the purpose only of ensuring your compliance with the terms of this Agreement;

    • (x) the Royal Mail Terms shall form part of this Agreement if it is stated in the License Certificate to so apply; and

    • (xi) the License shall be governed by this Agreement which shall apply irrespective of whether you have provided in any order or otherwise for any other terms and conditions to apply to this License, such other terms and conditions being of no effect;

    • (xii) you hereby appoint the Company to act as your exclusive agent in the extraction, preparation, indexing, compression and delivery of all Data to be used within the Product or Site.


    If any part of this Agreement is determined by any competent authority to be invalid, unlawful or unenforceable to any extent, it shall to that extent be severed from the remainder of the Agreement, which shall continue to be valid and enforceable.


    You agree to defend, indemnify and hold harmless the Company, its associated companies and entities, its suppliers and their respective officers, and agents and/or any other third party associated with or in the employ of the Company or such other Person from and against all claims and expenses, including legal fees, arising out of your use of the Product and the Site or any use made of your account with the Company.


    You may only transfer, assign sub-License or otherwise deal with the License granted under this Agreement if you have obtained the Company’s express written consent which may be refused in the absolute discretion of the Company. The Company may transfer or assign this agreement in its absolute discretion.


    19.1 The terms of this Agreement are governed by English Law.

    19.2 You agree to the exclusive jurisdiction of the English courts in relation to any dispute, which may arise under this Agreement.


    You shall during the term of this Agreement and thereafter keep and procure that your employees, contractors and agents keep secret and confidential all business, technical and commercial information concerning the Company and the Products that you have received or obtained as a result of the entering into of this Agreement save for information which is trivial or obvious or which enters into the public domain other than as a result of a breach of this clause.


    21.1 It is a further condition of this Agreement that you agree that:

    • (i) it is your responsibility to contact the Mailing Preference Service (MPS), the Telephone Preference Service (TPS) and the Corporate Telephone Preference Service (CTPS) (which are updated approximately every 28 days) to check and eliminate any records obtained from the Product before using such records for marketing, research or survey purposes;

    • (ii) no records obtained directly from the Product shall be used for marketing, research or survey purposes unless they are records including an Organisation Name, or are shown in The Product to be included in the “Edited Electoral Roll”.

    • (iii) you will follow the following codes of practice when contacting people by telephone using records obtained from the Product:

      • (a) never call a person who has registered with the TPS or an Organisation registered with the CTPS;

      • (b) always identify yourself clearly;

      • (c) never withhold your own Caller Line Identity;

      • (d) never adopt a menacing or annoying manner;

      • (e) remain polite, respectful and never use profanities or bad language;

      • (f) immediately end a call when requested to do so;

      • (g) always respect a request not to be contacted again;

      • (h) never telephone during unsocial hours (i.e never call a private residence before 10a.m (11a.m at weekends or holidays) or after 10p.m.)

    • (iv) never use any telephone numbers from the Product for sending SMS (“Text”) messages as part of any mass-marketing activity.

    21.2 The Mailing Preference Service can be contacted at DMA House, 70 Margaret Street, London, W1W 8SS; telephone 020 7291 3310 or and the Telephone Preference Service and Corporate Telephone Preference Service can be contacted at DMA House, 70 Margaret Street, London, W1W 8SS; telephone 020 7291 3320 or

    21.3 In addition to the fees payable pursuant to clause 3 of this Agreement you shall:

    • (i) pay to the Company a Data Extract License Fee of £20 +VAT for each thousand (or part thereof) residential address records extracted from the Product after the first 100,000 residential address records have been extracted within a single license year. For the purpose of this clause a “residential address record” is a record of one person at one delivery point

    • (ii) pay to the Company a Data Extract License Fee of £120 + VAT for each thousand (or part thereof) organisation address records extracted from the Product after the first 10,000 organisation address records have been extracted within a single license year. For the purpose of this clause an “organisation address record” is a record containing data in the ‘organisation’, ‘Sic’ or ‘Classification’ fields at one delivery point.

    • (iii) submit a quarterly return to the Company detailing the records which have been extracted by you in the previous quarter in the format requested by the Company from time to time. The returns shall be submitted to the Company by the 15th April, 15th July, 15th October and 15th January in each year in respect of the 3 month period ending on the last day of the previous month.

    • (iv) Not export more than 50,000 organisation or 500,000 residential address records within a single license year without first seeking and receiving written authorisation from The Company

    21.4 Non-return of quarterly Data Extract Return

    • (i) In the event of non-return of a quarterly Data Extract Return, the Licensee agrees to pay a late return penalty of £250 which shall be invoiced by the Company and payable within 14 days of the invoice date. Should the Licensee continue to fail to observe the terms and conditions of Data Extracts from the Product, the Company may terminate this Agreement forthwith pursuant to clause 7 above, with no refund of any fees paid.

    • (ii) Where the Company has reason to believe that Organisation data extracts have exceeded 10,000 records or that residential data extracts have exceeded 100,000 records it reserves the right to make an estimate of extracted records which have exceeded these amounts and invoice the Licensee according to the provisions in 21.3 i and 21.3 ii.

    21.5 The Product shall not be used in any automated process for extraction or addition of data from the Product into other databases or computer records.


    22.1 Censation contains Census output which is Crown copyright and is reproduced with permission of the controller of HMSO and the Queen’s printer for Scotland

    22.2 The Census output contained in Censation incorporates safeguards against the possible identification of any particular person or household. You shall not use such output to attempt to obtain or derive information relating specifically to an individual or household, nor claim to have obtained or derived such information.

    22.3 You shall not operate any Bureau Services that make use of data or information from Censation.

    22.4 Parliamentary Constituency and other National Statistics data is sourced from National Statistics. Crown copyright material is reproduced with the permission of the Controller of HMSO.


    23.1 The Map Data supplied with AFD Postcode products is copyright of Collins Bartholomew Ltd

    23.2 All screen images derived or generated from the data should incorporate the following acknowledgements:

    • Digital Map Data © Collins Bartholomew Ltd (year)

    • “year” shall be the year in which The Product was purchased or most recently renewed.

    23.3 Hard copy prints from the map data up to and including A4 size are permitted under the terms of this agreement. Hard copy output for resale or distribution to third parties may not be produced by you without the written permission of Collins Bartholomew. All hard copy output produced from the data should incorporate the following acknowledgements:

    • Digital Map Data © Collins Bartholomew Ltd (year)

    • “year” shall be the year in which The Product was purchased or most recently renewed


    24.1 Your right to use the Extended ISCD data provided with BankFinder is limited to use in connection with the UK Bacs scheme, Faster Payments scheme, CHAPS Sterling scheme and Cheque and Credit Clearing scheme.

    24.2 You acknowledge that all property rights including but not limited to Intellectual Property rights in the Sorting Code, Sorting Code Data, and the Extended ISCD, that form a part of BankFinder, are owned by UK Payments.

    24.3 You shall update BankFinder data at least monthly.

    24.4 All property rights in the Irish Bank sort code and validation data supplied with AFD BankFinder are the property of IPSO and/or its member banks, and that title shall not pass to you under any circumstances.

    24.5 You shall not grant any license or otherwise permit any third party to use the Irish Validation Data or the Product.

    24.6 You shall procure that only those employees and information technology contractors who have a need to know are given access to the Irish Validation Data supplied; and so that each such employee and contractor shall be advised that the Irish Validation Data is the property of IPSO and/or the Banks, and further is required to be kept confidential. You shall procure that the Irish Validation Data is kept confidential by such employees and contractors.

    24.7 You shall not reverse engineer, publish or cause to be distributed the modulus rules used in validation.

    24.8 You shall not publish or cause to be distributed a paper directory of Validation Data or Sort Code Data, and whether in competition with IPSO’s publication entitled “Sort Code Book” or otherwise.


    25.1 The Product contains Ordnance Survey data © Crown copyright and database right 2016.

    25.2 The Product contains Royal Mail data © Royal Mail copyright and database right 2016.


Please refer to the Royal Mail Terms.

Appendix F: Re-registration Form

See re-registration form

Appendix G: Royal Mail Terms


Please note not all sections may relate to your License.

  1. Definitions and interpretations

    1.1 In this Licence the following terms have the following meanings:

    • address refers to an address to which mail can be delivered

    • Bureau Customer a customer for a Bureau Service

    • Bureau Services a service comprising the Data Cleansing of a Customer Database and the supply of the resulting Cleansed Customer Database back to the relevant customer

    • Customer Database a database of an End User’s customer

    • Data Cleansing the processing of existing data records using PAFⓇ Data:

      • (a) including validating, reformatting, correcting or appending additional data to those records, and

      • (b) including the use of PAFⓇ Data within address capture applications, but

      • (c) not including Data Extraction (whether carried out by an address capture application or otherwise),

      • and Cleansed shall be read accordingly

    • Data Extraction the extraction of PAFⓇ Data or any part of it for the generation of new address records in a new or existing database

    • End User a single legal entity who you or a Licensee may permit to use PAFⓇ Data through its Users in accordance with this Licence

    • Extracted Data data generated as a result of Data Extraction

    • Licensee a person whose use of PAFⓇ Data you authorise further to this Licence, or whose use authorised by such a person by way of a sub-licence granted further to this Licence (whether directly or by way of a chain of sub-licences) but not an End User

    • PAFⓇ Data Royal Mail’s database known as PAFⓇ, and including the database known as the “Alias File”

    • PAFⓇ Licensing Centre Royal Mail’s website at or such other website as Royal Mail may notify further to this Licence

    • Party either Royal Mail or you (and Parties shall be read accordingly)

    • Royal Mail Royal Mail Group Limited, acting by its Address Management Unit

    • Solution a product or service or other solution which benefits from or includes PAFⓇ Data (including the provision of PAFⓇ Data itself), in whatever form, however produced or distributed and whether or not including other functionality, services, software or data

    • Standard PAFⓇ Licence a licence (other than a licence on the terms of this Licence) for the use of PAFⓇ Data on standard terms for specified uses made generally available by Royal Mail on the PAFⓇ Licensing Centre or otherwise

    • Substantially All a database which on its own or as part of another database comprises all or

    • Database substantially all the addresses in the United Kingdom or any of England, Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland

    • Term the period during which this Licence is in force according to its terms

    • User an individual authorised by an End User to use a Solution

    • Website a website, application or other remotely-enabled means of communicating with end user customers for products and services, made generally available to such customers

    Website Use the use of PAFⓇ Data to capture or verify address details of users of an End User’s Website where:

    • (a) Website users are not the End User’s employees or concerned with the provision of services to the End User (unless acting in a personal capacity), and

    • (b) neither the use of the Website or the End User’s product and service offering is connected with the management of address data or Data Cleansing, and

    • (c) the address capture or verification is carried out for the purpose of the receipt of products or services enabled by the Website

    Working Day Monday to Friday excluding bank and public holidays in England, and Wales

    1.2 In this Licence (unless the context otherwise requires) words following words such as “includes”, “including” and “in particular” are read without limitation, and references to a person are to any natural or legal person whether incorporated or not.

  2. End Users’ permitted use of Solutions

    End Users may freely use PAFⓇ Data in Solutions in accordance with these End User Terms.

  3. Conditions of use

    • (a) End Users must not make copies of PAFⓇ Data except as permitted by these End User Terms or reasonably necessary for back-up, security, business continuity and system testing purposes.

    • (b) End Users may use PAFⓇ Data for Data Extraction but Extracted Data:

      • (i) may only be accessed by Users, and

      • (ii) must not be supplied or any access to it provided to any third party.

    • (c) End Users may provide Cleansed data to third parties provided that:

      • (i) where that supply is a Bureau Service, the End User and the Bureau Customers comply with the restrictions in Schedule 4, and

      • (ii) if such databases are Substantially All Databases:

        • (A) such databases are not represented or held out as a master, original or comprehensive address database or other similar description,

        • (B) the access is provided in the course of the End User’s normal data supply or routine business activities and is not carried on as a business in its own right, and

        • (C) the provision includes a prominent notice that the relevant Cleansed data has been cleansed against PAFⓇ Data.

    • (d) End Users must not permit access to, display or communicate to the public any Solutions, except for the purposes of capturing or confirming address details of third parties.

    • (e) Except as set out in these End User Terms, End Users must not:

      • (i) transfer, assign, sell or licence Solutions or their use to any other person,

      • (ii) use Solutions to create a product or service distributed or sold to any third party which relies on any use of PAFⓇ Data, including copying, looking up or enquiring, publishing, searching, analysing, modifying and reformatting, or

      • (iii) copy, reproduce, extract, reutilise or publish Solutions or any of them.

  4. Subcontracting

    End Users may provide PAFⓇ Data to their subcontractors who may use it to the extent necessary for:

    • (a) the provision of information technology services to the End User, or

    • (b) acting on behalf of the End User

    in each case for the End User’s own business purposes and not those of the sub-contractor and provided that each such sub-contractor agrees to observe the restrictions on use of PAFⓇ Data contained in these End User Terms and that the End User is responsible for any breaches of those terms by such sub-contractor.

  5. Personal rights

    End User rights are personal, limited and non-transferable.

  6. Royal Mail’s IPR notice

The End User acknowledges that Royal Mail is the owner of the intellectual property rights in PAFⓇ Data and the PAFⓇ brand and it does not acquire and is not granted any rights to use those intellectual property rights other than as set out in these End User Terms.

  1. Cessation of use of PAFⓇ Data

    End Users must cease use of PAFⓇ Data if their right to use PAFⓇ Data is terminated and also destroy any copies of PAFⓇ Data they hold.

  2. PAFⓇ use by Users

    End Users must ensure that:

    • (a) these End User Terms bind their Users,

    • (b) only their Users exercise the use rights of Solutions and PAFⓇ Data granted to End Users further to these End User Terms, and

    • (c) in the event of termination or expiry of End Users’ rights to use Solutions and PAFⓇ Data, the rights of Users to use them also terminate.