Skip to main content

Help using our website

Moving around the website and finding what you are looking for

We want you to be able to move around the website and find what you are looking for easily. If you are having difficulty doing this please let us know and tell us what you did at

Knowing where you are on the website

Your current position within the website is shown underneath the main logo banner and above the page title and content in the form of a page path or 'breadcrumb'. For example if you were on the council tax page you would see:

Demonstrates breadcrumb

Home - Council tax, benefits and business rates - Council tax

If you select Home or Council, benefits and business rates from the path you will be taken to those pages.

Using the search

All pages display a search box at the top of the page. To use the search:

  • Enter the word or phrase you want to search for in the search box
  • As you type, results automatically start to appear in a drop down list below the search box
  • If you see the result you want in the list, select it and you will go to that page
  • Or select the search button (magnifying glass icon) or press enter on your keyboard to go to the search results page where you can see results for both web pages and documents

PDF documents

Our documents are mostly offered in a special format called Portable Data Format (PDF). Not all web browsers can display PDF documents so you will need a program called Adobe Acrobat Reader. This program lets you magnify and find screen text. It is freely available from the Adobe website. The Adobe Acrobat Reader download is also commonly available on CD-ROMs and is often preloaded on computers. 

If you experience problems viewing a PDF try checking which version of Adobe Reader you are using and see if a more recent version will help. You could also try saving a copy of the PDF to your computer. You can do this by right-clicking on the file name and selecting the option "Save Target As..." (for Internet Explorer) or "Save link as..." (for Firefox and Chrome).

Related pages

You might see an area called ‘Related pages’ on a page. This contains links to other pages within the site that you might find useful. Select one of the links and you will be taken to that page.

External links

Some pages have links to other useful websites. We are not responsible for the content or reliability of the linked websites. For further information about our linking policy see our terms and conditions page.

Printing web pages

When you print a page from this website it will print the content without the surrounding graphics. This is to ensure that you can print out information quickly and with the minimum of printer ink. Printer settings alter depending on the browser used to access this site and the printer used.

Email to a friend

If you know someone who might be interested in a page on our site, you can use the email to a friend button to email that person a link to the page.

Web browsers

Our website has been designed to support the following minimum browser and operating system combinations:

  • Internet Explorer 8 and later (Windows)
  • Mozilla Firefox 
  • Google Chrome 
  • Opera 
  • Safari 5 and later (Apple Mac)

We have built the website to support as wide a variety of browser and operating system combinations as possible. Older browsers than those listed will allow you to access the site and use the pages but might not display the site as designed or provide you with the best experience of using the website.

Most browser suppliers will allow you to upgrade for free, either because they don't charge for their browser or because you have bought a previous version. To upgrade your browser go to the supplier's website and follow the instructions provided.

Site contrast

Our website has been designed using CSS to allow most browsers and assistive software to change the colours and contrast features used within our content pages.


Cookies are pieces of data created when you visit a website. This website uses session and persistent cookies to collect information to help us improve our online services and content. For further information about the cookies used on this website see our privacy policy.

RSS feeds

RSS ('Really Simple Syndication') feeds allow you to see when websites have added new content. You can get the latest information in one place, as soon as it's published, without having to visit the websites you have taken the feed from. Feeds are just web pages, designed to be read by computers rather than people.

We provide a variety of RSS feeds through our GovDelivery service. Visiting the Subscribe page allows you to choose the items you are interested in, and then from the subscriber preferences page you can access your personalised RSS feed.


A plug-in is a program that enables a browser to access multimedia zones on the web. No plug-ins are needed to access, although some might be needed for accessing audio, video or special file formats on websites to which we link. Some external websites may offer you a download of the plug-in needed to view the site. Where this is the case you should receive clear instructions on screen. Be aware there may be legal and system requirements you need to satisfy.


If you would like to comment about our website or the information on a page or would like to tell us what would be useful on this page please let us know by using the feedback button at the bottom of a page.

A to Z of services