Urgent Telephone Weekends : 01233 331111

Accessibility Statement

This website is run by Ashford Borough Council. We want as many people as possible to be able to use our website. For example, that means you should be able to:

  • change colours, contrast levels and fonts
  • zoom in up to 300% without the text spilling off the screen
  • navigate most of the website using just a keyboard
  • navigate most of the website using speech recognition software
  • listen to most of the website using a screen reader (including the most recent versions of JAWS, NVDA and VoiceOver)

The design has been amended to address some of these issues. We’ve made the website text as simple as possible to understand.

AbilityNet has advice on making your device easier to use if you have a disability.

Learn how to change browser settings to improve accessibility.

British Sign Language users can use the SignLive service to have a call with our customer services team interpreted by a professional.

How accessible is our website

We know some parts of this website aren’t fully accessible:

  • you can’t modify the line height or spacing of text
  • most older PDF documents aren’t fully accessible to screen reader software
  • some videos don’t have captions
  • some of our online forms are difficult to navigate and fill out using just a keyboard or screen reader

What to do if you can’t access parts of this website

If you need information on this website in a different format (e.g. accessible PDF, large print, easy read, audio recording or braille) please contact us using the following methods:

Email accessibility@ashford.gov.uk

Call 01233 331111 – then press option 9

This number is active 8.30am-4pm Monday-Friday. We’ll consider your request and get back to you in five working days.

Reporting accessibility problems with this website

We’re always looking to improve the accessibility of our website. If you find any problems that aren’t listed on this page or think we’re not meeting the requirements of the accessibility regulations, contact the digital team.

Enforcement procedure

The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) is responsible for enforcing the accessibility regulations. If you’re not happy with how we respond to your complaint, contact the Equality Advisory and Support Service (EASS).

Contacting us by phone or visiting us in person

Information regarding a text relay service for people who are D/deaf, hearing impaired or have a speech impediment can be found on the Ofcom website.

Our offices have audio induction loops or British Sign Language users can use the SignLive service to have a call with our customer services team interpreted by a professional.

Get in touch with us

Technical information about this website’s accessibility

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

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

Non Accessible Content

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

Non-compliance with the accessibility regulations

URL: Ashford.gov.uk

Element IDs are not unique – This doesn't meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 4.1.1 Parsing

Extra issues on our plugins are listed below:

URL: Planning.ashford.gov.uk (ABC Planning Portal)

Form field is not labelled – This doesn’t meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 3.3.2 Labels or Instructions

Inline frame without a text alternative – This doesn’t meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 4.1.2 Name, Role, Value

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

PDFs and other documents

Many of our older PDFs and Word documents don’t meet accessibility standards – for example, they may not be structured so they’re accessible to a screen reader. This doesn’t meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 4.1.2 (name, role value). Some of these pdfs were previously exempt from the regulations as they were published before 23 September 2018 and weren't essential to providing our services. However, with the launch of our new website, these documents have been republished and are now in scope. We have been making these documents accessible, or replacing them as HTML content, and are continuing to work through them.

We don't intend to make some documents that are non essential to providing our services accessible. For example, we don’t plan to fix Ashford For You residents' magazine PDFs.

Any new PDFs or Word documents we publish will meet accessibility standards.

Live video

Live video streams don’t have captions.

We don’t plan to add captions to live video streams because live video is exempt from meeting the accessibility regulations.

How we tested our website

Our website was last tested on 8 April 2021. The test was carried out by Smarter Digital Services. This test involved a combination of automated and manual testing.

We use Monsido to flag up accessibility issues, we also do manual checks using the Government Digital Service checklist.

We have tested:

  • Our main website – www.ashford.gov.uk
  • Our Plugins – ABC Complaint Tracker, ABC Garden Waste Registration, ABC Land Charges, ABC Planning Portal – services based on a different technical platform but ‘skinned’ to look like our website

What we’re doing to improve accessibility

We are working to resolve all identified accessibility issues which are within our control.

We are working with suppliers to resolve any identified accessibility issues where we do not have direct control over their product.

This statement was prepared on 31 July 2020. It was last updated on 17 August 2021.