Accessibility statement

This accessibility statement applies to naturalresources.wales 

How you can use this website

This website is run by Natural Resources Wales (NRW).  We want everyone to be able to access our websites. This means, for example, that you should be able to:

  • navigate most of the site in a logical order using just a keyboard
  • navigate to page content quickly using a keyboard, a screen reader or both through the 'skip to main content' link provided at the top of each page
  • listen to most of the site using a screen reader (our testers have had high success with NVDA)
  • use the visible focus provided across the site to support navigation to most pages and elements of the site (excluding maps)
  • use your browser zoom to magnify your view up to 200% without the text spilling off the screen
  • remove styling and navigate the site in a logical order

We are working to make the website text easy to understand.

Make your device easier to use

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

How accessible this website is

We know some parts of this website are not fully accessible, for example:

  • most documents are not accessible to screen reader software, this includes many of our application forms in Microsoft Word
  • most of our public registers (for example scrap metal dealer and waste electronic equipment WEEE) are Excel documents, these are not currently accessible
  • none of our maps are accessible and do not contain a text alternative in most cases (for example, the long term flood risk map )
  • some links on our website aren’t self-explanatory for a screen reader user
  • some further development issues remain and these have been refined and added to the backlog we are currently working through
  • for some services, we link to other NRW websites, separate to the main naturalresources.wales domain, some of these are not accessible (for example, timber sales site and the hazardous waste registration sites)

Feedback and contact information

If you need information from any of our websites in a different format, such as accessible PDFs, large print, easy read, audio recording or braille:

Natural Resources Wales
Customer Care Centre
Ty Cambria
29 Newport Rd
Cardiff
CF24 0TP 

We’ll consider your request and get back to you in 5 working days.  

Reporting accessibility problems with our websites

We’re always looking to improve the accessibility of all our websites. If you find any problems not listed on this page or think we’re not meeting accessibility requirements, please email the NRW Digital Team digital@naturalresourceswales.gov.uk

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 websites’ accessibility

Natural Resources Wales is committed to making its websites 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

We are continuing to work on fixing these accessibility problems, as part of our accessibility roadmap. 

Guidance documents

Most of our guidance was created before September 2018 and is published in Word, Excel or PDF format. Many of these documents are not formatted in such a way as to be accessible to a screen reader. This doesn’t meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 4.1.2

New guidance will be published as web-pages where possible. Any new documents we publish will meet accessibility standards.

Application forms

Most of our forms were published before September 2018. They are in PDF, Word and Excel and are not accessible.

We are working to convert our most used forms to accessible online forms. 30% of our most used application forms have been converted so far and this work will continue as part of our roadmap of accessibility improvements.

Any new application forms will be published as accessible online forms.

Links

We are aware of the following issues with the links on our site:

  • some link text doesn't make sense when read on its own, for example 'click here'
  • many older PDF files contain broken links

We carry out regular checks of any newly broken links on our webpages, and fix as soon as they are identified.

We will not fix broken links in documents published before September 2018, if it's not essential for a user to access a service.

When we publish new content, we'll make sure our links meet accessibility standards.

Maps embedded into the NRW website

Maps embedded into our website are not accessible. 

The list view of places to visit is an accessible alternative to the days out map.

Papers and minutes from public meetings after September 2018

Papers and minutes from NRW Board meetings and forums published before September 2020 are not accessible as they are not tagged up properly. 

Any new board papers and minutes from September 2020 will be as accessible as possible. 

Research and reports documents 

Some reports and technical documents published after September 2018 are not accessible documents, and may include:

  • formatting that may cause issues, for example use of tables without label descriptions
  • images without text alternative (alt text), so the information in them isn’t available to people using a screen reader. This doesn’t meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 1.1.1.
  • some images within PDFs contain text (for example, diagrams with charts or graphs), so people with dyslexia or using a screen reader will not be able to read the information. This doesn't meet WCAG success criterion 1.4.5 (Images of Text).

We have attempted to make research and report documents from September 2019 as accessible as possible. 

Feedback tab

We use a product called Hotjar to help us gather feedback from people about their experience of using our website. This is only accessible if you use a mouse to click on it. We have asked the supplier to resolve the issues.

If you are unable to use our ‘Feedback’ button, please use our alternative feedback form to tell us about your experience.

Other NRW websites

Some of the services you may access online with Natural Resources Wales are hosted on separate websites to the main naturalresources.wales site.

The summary of accessibility status of NRW's other websites explains the current accessibility status of other NRW websites.

We have prioritised reviewing and fixing accessibility issues on our websites with the highest number of people accessing them for the most critical services.  

Improvements will be part of our roadmap of future work.

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

We don't plan to fix the following, as they are exempt in the regulations. 

Older documents

The majority of our older PDFs, Excel files 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 and success criterion 4.1.2.

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

We therefore don't plan to fix the following information if it was published before 23 September 2018:

  • evidence reports
  • strategies and plans
  • board and committee papers
  • consultations
  • permitting documentation (public register)
  • newsletters
  • location maps and leaflets
  • education material (designed for print)
  • visitor centre leaflets and display boards

Disproportionate burden

Our Designated sites search includes over 10,000 historical documents, some of which may be exempt from the regulations (e.g maps), but some may be considered to be guidance. It would take a considerable amount of time and money to fully review and address these, therefore, we have assessed that this would be a disproportionate burden at this time.

Any new documents we publish will be made as accessible as possible. ​

What we’re doing to improve accessibility

We are actively looking to improve the accessibility on our website.  

The following are some of the areas we are focussing on over the next 12 months to make our website more accessible. 

  • Continue to make documents in active use into accessible formats
  • Convert remaining application forms in Word documents into online forms
  • Redevelop the long-term flood risk service into more accessible format
  • Transfer more of our public registers into accessible web content
  • Further refine and fix remaining web development issues with our templates
  • Continue to review areas of the website, and rewrite to be in clear language
  • Fix remaining issues on river levels website
  • Fix remaining issues on flood warnings website
  • Review and prioritise accessibility issues identified on separate NRW websites

We will update our list of things we've done to make our website more accessible and meet the accessibility regulations. 

Preparation of this accessibility statement

This statement was prepared on 22 September 2020. It was last reviewed on 22 September 2020.

This website was last tested in June 2020. Tests have been carried out by Zoonou and continue to be made by internal testers as we progress with fixing problems identified.

The testers used a representative sample of the websites as defined by the Website Accessibility Conformance Evaluation Methodology (WCAG-EM).

Our test partner tested this site by manually reviewing representative URLs of all the templates as well as providing the results of a scan of the whole site to report issues that could be detected by automation.

We also use SiteMorse to run automated scans of broken links and missing alternative text for images issues on a regular basis.

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