We have designed our website to be as easy to use and understand for as many visitors as possible.
As a general additional resource to the information set out on this page, we would recommend a visit to the BBC website My Web My Way, which has been specifically designed to help users on a wide variety of platforms.
We have invested in an accessibility tool called Recite Me for users with specific communication needs. The tool gives access a range of accessibility features by clicking on the accessibility button next to the search bar. Once the toolbar has been enabled users can highlight text for audio descriptions, various languages, background and text colours adjustment, a reading ruler, a magnifier, to enable plain text and text can be downloaded as an MP3. Click here to access the user guide for more information.
On this page you can find out more about:
We have followed the World Wide Web Consortium's (W3C's) Web Content Accessibility Guidelines and have attained Level AA compliance.
The site has been built using XHMTL 1.0 Strict and has been formally validated on the W3C site. For more information, click the logo below.
The stylesheets used on the site validate to W3C CSS level 2 revision 1. For more information, click the logo below.
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We have developed the website to be most compatible with:
- a screen size of 1024 x 768 pixels
- Internet Explorer 6.0 and above
- Firefox 2.0 and above.
It has also been tested using Opera and Mozilla browsers.
Changing text sizes and colours
If you have sight problems and need larger fonts or high-contrast colours to read the screen more easily it may be useful for you to change the way the text displays on the screen.
You can change the font size, style and colour, and choose an alternative colour for links. You can also change background and foreground colours.
How can I change the size and colour of the font?
If you are using Internet Explorer on a PC:
To change the text size
- Selecting the 'View' menu at the top of your window.
- To change font size, scroll down and select the 'Text' size option.
To ignore font and background colours
- Go to 'Tools' on the menu at the top of your window
- Choose the 'Internet options' from the Tools menu at the top of the window.
- On the 'General' tab of the window that appears, click the 'Accessibility' button (usually on the bottom right).
- This takes you to a menu where you can choose to ignore the way the page is formatted
- Then return to the Internet options menu, and use the Colours and Fonts buttons to set your preferences.
If you are using Internet Explorer on an Apple Mac
- Select 'Preferences' from the 'Edi't menu at the top of the window.
- From there, click on 'Web' content and uncheck the Show style sheets option.
- Then return to the list of preferences and choose 'Web browser'.
- Then click on Language/fonts and choose the size you need.
You do not have to use a mouse to navigate this website. Instead you can use your arrow keys to scroll up or down the page.
- The Tab key will move you between links
- Pressing Return or Enter will select one
- To go back to the previous page, use the Backspace key
We have designed the website to be used with screenreader software but do not recommend the use of any one type of software above another.
Clicking on the Skip navigation link in the top-right navigation will take you straight to the top of the text area of the page, so that your screenreader does not read all the other navigation options first.
We have tried to apply the principles of the Plain English Campaign to the website, so that it can be easily understood by as many people as possible.
Downloadable documents - file formats
The most common file formats for downloadable documents on our website are Portable Document Format (PDF) and Microsoft Word (DOC).
Most computers already have the software to open these document formats. If you do not have Adobe Reader (for reading PDFs) installed on your computer, it is available to download from the Adobe website.
Accessibility of PDF documents
Useful information about services to make Acrobat documents more accessible is provided on Adobe's website:
Saving documents to your computer
If you have a PC, right-click on the link to the document. A pop-up menu will then appear. Scroll down the menu and click on 'Save target as'. You will then be asked to choose a folder on your computer where you can save the document.
If you use an Apple Mac, hold down the mouse button over the link. A pop-up menu will then appear. Scroll down the menu and click on 'Save target as'. You will then be asked to choose a folder on your computer where you can save the document
Requesting text in other languages, Braille or audio
If you would like text, stories or other documents on this website in another language, in Braille or in audio for someone you know, and you have asked them, then please contact the Communications Department on 0191 430 2099 or email email@example.com