One of our key priorities at the Canal & River Trust is to ensure that our canals are open, accessible and safe. Not only does this apply to the waterways themselves, but also to how we provide information in the virtual world.
In developing our website we have worked to WCAG 2.0 AA standards http://www.w3.org/TR/WCAG/ and continue do so.
To ensure our content and pages are well structured and easily accessible we use Cascading Style Sheets. We are continuing to modify and improve this so that we can make the information available across a larger number of devices and platforms.
All content has been written and laid out on the page to enable it to be as accessible as possible. This includes writing easy-to-read copy, including meaningful text links, using lists with bullet points, pulling out quotes and keeping paragraphs short. However, some areas of the website are written with specific audiences in mind, so the terminology and descriptions used may be specific to that audience.
We use a fairly large font size for the body text – 16 pixels. Text size can be increased in your browser, particularly using the zoom function which is available in most browsers.
Contrasting colours have been chosen and implemented into the design wherever possible to be accessible to people with colour-blindness and visual impairments. We underline links as well as use colour to make them stand out more and try to keep as many web conventions intact across the site.
On most occasions our images use alternative text to describe what is in the picture.
Most of our downloads on the site are in a PDF format. The industry leading PDF reader is Adobe Reader, available from http://www.adobe.com/accessibility/products/reader/. Other readers such as Foxit reader (http://www.foxitsoftware.com/Secure_PDF_Reader/) and NitroPDF (http://www.nitropdf.com/) are also freely available.
Rich media content
We are currently migrating our videos and over time will be looking to add facilities such as closed captions and where applicable a text commentary. If you feel you would like to contribute to this effort, please get in touch with email@example.com
As part of the rollout of our new site, we will be reviewing forms and actions throughout the site and where applicable adding access keys to quickly navigate the page using browsing software. These keys can be used by everyone so frequent visitors will also get a benefit of jumping quickly to sections of a page that interests them. We have added access keys accoring to the government suggested format (where applicable) which can be found here: http://archive.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/e-government/resources/handbook/html/2-4.asp
We continually strive to meet our accessibility standards and use several testing tools to help automate the validation process. Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any feedback or questions about this area.