Accessibility

What is accessibility?

Accessibility is the word used to describe whether a product (for example, a website, mobile site, digital TV interface or application) can be used by people of all abilities and disabilities.

For instance, a website is accessible if all people, including disabled and elderly people, can use it. We aim to ensure that our website is informative and easy to use as well as being accessible.

On a website, accessibility depends on how a person's disability affects the way they perceive information on a page and how they navigate within and between pages. Elements that affect accessibility include:

  • For people who can't see very well: the colours and the contrast between colours; the size of text; the choice of fonts
  • For people who are blind: how a screenreader interprets the elements on a page (for example, alt tags for images, and title tags for links); the inclusion of audio description for video content
  • For people who can't hear very well: how any audio content is represented graphically (for example, including subtitles or signing on video content)
  • For people who find a keyboard or mouse hard to use: the ease with which someone can navigate to parts of the page (for instance, by tabbing); auto-completion of forms
  • For people who find words difficult: the length of sentences and paragraphs; the complexity of the vocabulary; the choice of fonts and size of text; the availability of spelling checkers and word prediction; the opportunity to have text read out loud

Our accessibility policy takes into account these factors wherever possible.

This website has been tested against the W3C's Web Content Accessibility Guidlines (WCAG) 1.0 and was found to meet WCAG 1.0 conformance level A.

Access keys

Access keys used

This site implements these UK Government recommendations for access keys:

1 - Home page
2 - What's new (news)
3 - Site map
4 - Search
8 - Terms and conditions
0 - Access key details (shows this page)
S - Skips main navigation menus (for text browser users)

Access key usage

BrowserWindowsMacLinux
Internet Explorer[ALT] + access keyN/AN/A
Chrome[ALT] + access key[Ctrl] [ALT] + access key[Alt] + access key
Firefox[ALT] [Shift] + access key[Ctrl] [ALT] + access key[Alt] [Shift] + access key
Safari[ALT] + access key[Ctrl] [ALT] + access keyN/A
Operav15 or newer: [Alt] + access key
v12.1 or older: [Shift] [Esc] + access key

Text browser users can use the 'S' access key to skip the navigation menus and go straight to the page content.

How-to guides

The BBC website contains a wealth of information to help you customise the accessibility features of your computer setup or web browser, as well as guides and factsheets that introduce the range of assistive technologies available:

  • I can't see very well - These guides explain ways to change how your computer or web browser operates, to make things easier for people who have difficulty seeing
  • I am blind - These guides explain ways to change how your computer or web browser operates, to make things easier for people who are blind
  • I can't hear very well - Resources available on the internet related to hearing impairment and computing
  • I find a keyboard or mouse hard to use - These guides explain ways to change how your computer or web browser operates, to make things easier for people who find a mouse difficult to use
  • I find words difficult - These guides explain ways to change how your computer or web browser operates, to make things easier for people who have difficulty with words