We have provided the features set out below to improve navigation for screen reader users, keyboard navigation and users of text-only browsers.
There is a short menu at the start of every page that allows you to jump directly to the most important parts of the page, including main content and navigation. Sighted people who use the keyboard to navigate will see these links appear on screen when using the Tab key to navigate through the page. Some shortcuts have an access key assigned.
Access keys are keyboard shortcuts that work instead of a mouse for navigation. You can find out how to use these shortcuts on your browser by visiting http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Access_key.
- c – Jump down to the content (on the current page)
- 0 – Go to the Home page
- 9 – Go to the Accessibility page
- 8 – Go to the Sitemap page
These access keys have been chosen to follow the UK government website guidelines where applicable. Wherever possible, they also avoid conflicting with commonly used screen reader keyboard shortcuts.
Structured, semantic mark-up: headings and navigation menus
HTML heading tags are used to convey the document layout. H1 tags are used for main titles, H2 tags for subtitles, and so on. Navigation menus are marked up as HTML lists. This ensures that the number of links in the list is read out at the start and it can be skipped easily.
Where an image conveys important information, alternative text will be provided. If the image is used for a decorative purpose the alternative text will be left blank.
Style sheets, fonts, colours
This site uses software called Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) to control all of the presentation and layout. If your browser or browsing device does not support style sheets, the use of structured semantic mark-up ensures that the content of each page is still readable and clearly structured.
Font sizes and colours can be changed by using your own custom style sheets or browser settings. The BBC has an excellent guide on how to do this for various browsers and systems.
The content on this site has been written and formatted to make it accessible and the site is fully accessible if scripting is unavailable.
The pages on this site conform at a minimum to Level A compliance as specified by the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines and endorsed by the Royal National Institute for the Blind (RNIB). The pages use structured semantic mark-up [to ensure that the code will work correctly on the majority of web browsers] and our CSS also validates the pages [to ensure that there are no errors that may affect viewing]. We are committed to providing services online in line with the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) 1995, as required by the Disability Rights Commission (DRC).