Accessibility

Information about accessibility on our site using screen readers and other software, help using a mouse or keyboard.

Northumberland County Council is committed to making this website accessible, in accordance with the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018.

  • This document was last updated on 24 June 2022. 
  • This website is run by Northumberland County Council. 
This accessibility statement applies to www.northumberland.gov.uk and the following sub-domains: 
  • online. (eForms)  
  • form. (eForms)  
  • parkingpcns. (parking ticket payment)  
  • bulkywastess. (bulky waste booking service)
  • gwaste. (garden waste service payment system)
  • pestcontrolss. (pest control booking system)
  • publicaccess. (planning system)
  • Digital maps 
The purpose of this statement is to let you know: 
  • How accessible our website is 
  • Issues we are currently working on 
  • How to report issues 
  • What to do if you can’t access parts of it 

Viewing our website 

There are a number of customisation options for your browser and device that could help you use this website and other websites more effectively. AbilityNet has advice on making your device easier to use if you have a disability or impairment. This includes how to: 
  
We have included a link in the footer of every page on www.northumberland.gov.uk to translate the text using Google Translate. Should you wish to translate the text on all websites you use, this can be done by changing the settings in your browser: 
This website is designed to be used by as many people as possible. The text should be clear and simple to understand. We follow a guide to help website editors write accessible and easy to understand content on our web pages: 

Audit details:

How accessible this website is  

We know some parts of this website are not fully accessible: 
  • our cookie request system has some issues when using keyboard control 
  • our accordions may not work fully with assistive technology 
  • some images may not have fully descriptive alternative text and a very small number may have none 
  • many documents are not accessible in a number of ways including missing text alternatives and missing document structure. 
  • live video streams and a small number of mostly older pre-recorded video do not have captions 
  

To make our website more accessible we use the Recite Me assistive toolbar. 

This toolbar is currently available on www.northumberland.gov.uk and offers the following assitive fuctionality by clicking on the 'Listen and Translate' text link at the top of each web page (or within the MENU on mobiles): 

  1. Screen reader - reading aloud website text, which can be customised to suit the viewer
  2. Reading assitance - ruler, screen mask, magnifier, margins, and a dictionary
  3. Styling assistance - customise the websites colour scheme as well as the texts font style, size, colour, and spacing
  4. Translation - translates content into over 100 languages, including 35 text to speech voices. 
 

Feedback and contact information 

If you need information on this website in a different format like accessible PDF, large print, easy read, audio recording or braille, you can call us on 0345 600 6400 (Monday to Thursday 08:30 - 17:00 and Friday 08:30 - 16:30)  

If you have speech or hearing difficulties, you can use Relay UK to contact us by dialing 018001 01670 623515. you can find more information about Relay UK here. 

 

Reporting accessibility problems with this website 

We’re always looking to improve the accessibility of this website. If you find any problems not listed on this page or think we’re not meeting accessibility requirements, you can report this using our eForm below:

Your report will be sent to our website content team leader, development team leader and the accessibility lead for Northumberland County Council. If appropriate, you should expect a response within 10 working days. 

Enforcement procedure 

The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) is responsible for enforcing the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018 (the ‘accessibility regulations’). If you’re not happy with how we respond to your complaint, contact the Equality Advisory and Support Service (EASS). 

 

Technical information about this website’s accessibility 

Northumberland County Council is committed to making its website accessible, in accordance with the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018. 

 

Compliance status 

This website is partially compliant with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines version 2.1 AA standard, due to the non-compliances and exemptions listed below. 

 

Non-accessible content 

The content listed below is non-accessible for the following reasons. 

  • Non-compliance with the accessibility regulations 

Some images do not have a text alternative, so people using a screen reader cannot access the information. This fails WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.1.1 (non-text content). This is an ongoing issue with new images and requires regular retesting to ensure we are fully compliant.  

Cookie request system has some issues when using keyboard control this fails WCAG 3.2.1 (On Focus). We have upgraded the system to the latest version available and are working with the external supplier to see if any outstanding issues can be rectified in a future update. 

Accordions may not work fully with assistive technology. This fails WCAG 4.1.2 (Name, Role, Value). This element is being re-coded and should be live by the end of July 2022.    

 

We have also identified the following specific issues on our sub-domains:  

online. (eForms) - missing alternative text on images. This system is currently being depreciated in favour of a new forms system that will be live by April 2023. 

form. (eForms) - missing alternative text on images. This system is currently being depreciated in favour of a new forms system that will be live by April 2023. 

parkingpcns. (parking ticket payment) - missing the alternative text on several images. We are working with the external supplier to see if a patch is possible.  

publicaccess. (planning system) - missing the alternative text on ‘on track’ button. We are working with the external supplier to see if a patch is possible.  

Digital maps - are missing alternative text on council logo - We are working with the external supplier to see if a patch is possible. 
 

We have also identified the following issues on our external domains: 

Northumberland.spydus.co.uk (library catalogue) - empty heading, empty button, linked image missing, missing form label, empty link. Page refresh/redirect and contrast errors. We are currently working with the external supplier to see if a patch is possible.  
 

Disproportionate burden 

We are currently in the process of replacing our website content management system and customer service system. Some of the issues above relating to eForms will be resolved as part of the transfer to these new systems. 

We believe that doing so now would be a disproportionate burden within the meaning of the accessibility regulations. We will make another assessment in April 2023. 
 

Content that’s not within the scope of the accessibility regulations 

Some of our PDFs and Word documents are essential to providing our services. We are currently in the process of evaluating which of these documents need to be replaced. This evaluation should be completed by April 2023. 

The accessibility regulations do not require us to fix PDFs or other documents published before 23 September 2018 if they’re not essential to providing our services.  

We do not plan to add captions to live video streams because live video is exempt from meeting the accessibility regulations. 

 
 

Preparation of this accessibility statement 

This statement was prepared on 8 April 2020. It was last reviewed on 24 June 2022. 

This website was last tested on 23 June 2022 for compliance with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines V2.1 level A and level AA, and these tests have been carried out internally. 

We used the Website Accessibility Conformance Evaluation Methodology (WCAG-EM) approach to deciding on a sample of pages to test. 

We audit our website compliance using the following applications: 

  • WAVE - Web Accessibility Evaluation Tool 
  • AXE - The Standard in Accessibility Testing 
  • AChecker 


Cookie information

Cookies that are essential for our website to operate: 

  • ASP.Net_SessionID - Keeps the user session ID for security reasons. 

  • CMSCookieLevel - Specifies which cookies are allowed by the visitor. 
  • CMSCsrfCookie - Store's a security token that the system uses to validate all form data submitted via POST requests. Helps protect against Cross site request forgery. 
  • CMSPreferredCulture - Stores the visitor's preferred content culture. 
 
Cookies that provide additional functionality or analytics: 
  • ASP.Net_SessionID - Keeps the user session ID for security reasons. 
  • CMSCookieLevel - Specifies which cookies are allowed by the visitor. 
  • CMSCsrfCookie - Store's a security token that the system uses to validate all form data submitted via POST requests. Helps protect against Cross site request forgery.