Accessibility Help

Overview

Our belief is that the web should be easy to use and accessible to everyone. With this in mind we have made a website which allows you to customise your web viewing experience. This page describes the functionality we have included which makes the site more accessible for you.

Accessibility topics covered in this page

  • Access Keys
  • Images and Alt tags
  • Resizable Text
  • Coding standards and compliance
  • Custom text-only and high-contrast variants
  • Recommended Specification

Access Keys

Access keys are keyboard shortcuts for visitors to use either the keyboard or a screen-reader as the main interface for navigating a website. The access keys allow you to quickly and easily access all the main areas of the site.

Windows users press and hold the ' Alt ' key along with the access key to highlight the link on requested page, you can then press ' Enter ' to select that link.

Mac users press and hold the ' Ctrl ' key along with the access key to automatically send you to the requested page.

The access keys below are used on this site:

' Alt ' + ' 0 ' - Link to accessibility page.
' Alt ' + ' 1 ' - Link to homepage.
' Alt ' + ' 2 ' - Link to 'Skip to main content'.
' Alt ' + ' 4 ' - Link to search (places cursor in the search form box at the top of the page).

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Images and alt tags

We have tried not to use excessive graphics within our site, & download times have been reduced.

The images that we have used in this site include 'Alt' tags which are text alternatives to the image – this allows users to understand what the image conveys, if it doesn't load, if you are browsing with the images switched off, or are using assistive technology to browse the website.

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Resizable Text

We have not fixed the size of textual information on our website so that font size can be altered to suit your requirements.

There are a number of ways to change the text size in your browser; the easiest way is to follow the steps below

Internet Explorer and Firefox:

  • Select the 'View' menu.
  • Select the 'Text Size' option from the menu.
  • Click on the text size you wish to view.

You can also increase & decrease the size of the text by holding down the Ctrl key whilst using the scroll wheel on your mouse or the ‘+’ (plus) and ‘-‘ (minus) keys.

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Coding standards and compliance

This website is built using code compliant with World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) standards for XHTML and Cascading Style Sheets. W3C is the governing authority on web development standards and practices.

The site displays correctly with current browsers, and using standard XHTML code means that any future browsers will also display this website correctly. We are continuously improving this website to ensure that pages conform to at least an A level of the W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0.

There may be a few pages that do not conform to all the guidelines. Whilst every effort is made to ensure the whole site conforms, with many web contributors, this is an ongoing process.

If you have any problems accessing information on the site, please advise us by using the Contact Us page.

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Custom text-only and high-contrast variants

If you require a text-only or high-contrast version of this site, go to the Microsoft Accessability Tutorial pages for detailed information on how to use custom stylesheets, as well as downloadable sample custom stylesheets .

Recommended Specification

Click on 'More Information' below to view the specifications that we recommend for optimal viewing of this website.

  • Screen resolution of 1024 x 768, or higher.
  • Colour depth of 32bit.
  • ADSL (broadband) internet connection.
  • Mozilla Firefox 2.0 or Internet Explorer 7
  • Adobe Flash Player 7 or higher.
  • Adobe Acrobat Reader 6 or higher.
  • WinZip 9 or higher.

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