This accessibility statement applies to the main Torbay Council website (www.torbay.gov.uk) and the essential external websites which support it, including:

While using this website, and third-party websites which we rely on to provide our services, 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)

We’ve also made the website text as simple as possible to understand.

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How accessible this website is

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

  • some older PDF documents are not fully accessible to screen reader software
  • some of our online forms are difficult to navigate using just a keyboard
  • planning applications in our online planning system may include documents provided to us by third parties (e.g. architects and householders) which are not accessible and also scans of plans or handwritten letters
  • some of our content is difficult to understand
  • Local Plan documents may include scans of plans or handwritten letters
  • text that highlights a required field on our online forms and search does not have enough contrast
  • some form controls and buttons are not labelled
  • at 400% some elements of the page do not reflow correctly
  • in mobile view, under Coronavirus, the number of total cases does not reflow correctly to fit the webpage

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What to do if you cannot access parts of this website

If you need any content from this website provided in a different format, please contact the relevant service.

Alternative formats include:

  • accessible digital document in a range of different formats
  • large print
  • easy read
  • audio recording
  • braille

Contact details can be found on individual service pages or the main contact page.

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Reporting problems

We’re always looking to improve the accessibility of this website. If you find any problems not listed on this page or think we’re not meeting accessibility requirements email webmaster@torbay.gov.uk.

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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).

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Compliance status

This website is run by Torbay Council. We are committed to making our website accessible, in accordance with the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018.

So that as many people as possible can access our content and services it has been designed in line with:

  • Government design principles
  • Local government digital standards
  • Plain English standards

We are currently working with external service providers to ensure that a consistent design and level of accessibility is also experienced throughout our third-party apps and websites.

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

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Non-accessible content

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

Non-compliance with the accessibility regulations

Known accessibility issues on the main Torbay Council website (www.torbay.gov.uk) are listed in the internal services section.

There are also issues with our third party websites. We are working with our suppliers to resolve these issues but can not provide a timescale for this work.

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Disproportionate burden

Some Portable Document Format (PDF) and Microsoft Office documents (DOC/DOCX/XLS/XLSX) are considered to be exempt from accessibility regulations if they were created before 23 September 2018, or if making them accessible is considered to be a disproportionate burden to the organisation. This exemption only applies to specific documents or groups of documents that:

  • exist or are produced in very high numbers
  • are overly complicated to make accessible
  • are contributed to by multiple parties (where we are mainly collating the information)
  • are exceptionally large (sample size of over 10-30 pages)

Each document is assessed on a case-by-case basis. For example, while a single 30 page document of plain text may not be exempt if it's easy to convert, we might consider 10 pages of complicated diagrams, or a large group of smaller documents that are heavily related, to be burdensome to convert when the content is not critical to offering our services or frequently accessed/requested.

The majority of the documents we consider to be exempt through disproportionate burden fall within the following service areas:

  • Planning - Documents that support planning applications are provided to us by third parties (e.g. architects and householders) and may not be accessible and could include scans of plans or handwritten letters.
  • Local Plan - documents are long and complex and include scans of plans or handwritten letters
  • Inglewood Inquiry - contains a high number of large documents which were provided by a third party

Our assessment of the burden of making these documents into an accessible format is that:

  • It would take several hours to make some documents fully accessible version. This estimate is based on our extensive experience of converting documents which can take between 2 and 30 hours (£28 to £430) per document, depending on length and complexity
  • The number of documents is too great
  • Some of these documents were created by third parties and publishing an updated version would mean altering content that isn’t ours
  • Many of the documents contain complex elements which are difficult to convert, such as detailed tables, graphs, and diagrams
  • Interest in some of these documents is low
  • We will provide an accessible version on request

Duration

We do not currently foresee a point where a disproportionate burden no longer applies but plan to review this on a yearly basis.

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Accessibility of internal services

We know that some parts of this website are not fully accessible.

Known accessibility issues
WCAG Description of the issue Fixed by
1.1.1 Ensure PDFs are machine readable

Some older PDF documents are not fully accessible to screen reader software.

Planning applications in our online planning system may include documents provided to us by third parties (e.g. architects and householders) which are not accessible.

We will replace documents with HTML pages as they are reviewed and updated by the service area.

Some documents are exempt (pre-regulations and disproportionate burden).

1.1.1 Missing alternative text (non-text content)

Some images, Local Plan documents and planning applications in our online planning system may include scans of plans or handwritten letters which do not have alternative text.

Some documents are exempt (pre-regulations and disproportionate burden)

1.3.1 Specify headings for every PDF and fix untagged PDFs

Some older PDFs, Local Plan and planning applications documents do not have headings and are not tagged.

Some documents are exempt (pre-regulations and disproportionate burden)

1.4.3 Contrast (Minimum)

Text that highlights a required field on our online forms does not have enough contrast.

No specific timescale. We will fix these issues as forms are reviewed and updated by the service area.

2.4.2 Page Titled

Some PDF documents are missing titles that describe the topic or purpose of the page.

Some documents are exempt (pre-regulations and disproportionate burden)

4.1.2 Name, Role, Value

Some form controls and buttons are not labelled.

No specific timescale. We will fix these issues as forms are reviewed and updated by the service area.

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Accessibility of external services

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Testing accessibility

This website was tested by the Central Digital and Data Office in Q4 2021. The audit was carried out using:

This website was tested by our web developer and web team in Q1 2022 to fix issues found in the above audit. The audit was carried out using:

What we’re doing to improve accessibility

Our web developer and web team continuously use browser-based accessibility reporting tools to self assess and identify and prioritise issues across all websites.

We are in the process of developing a new website which will be launched in phases. We will also be carrying out a full accessibility audit by August 2022 with the help of an accessibility specialist to make sure the new website is accessible. We will also be working with our suppliers to ensure third party areas of our website meet accessibility standards. We can't provide timescales for this at the moment.

Any new documents will be added to the website as HTML where possible. We are going to introduce an internal audit of any new documents that are added to the website to explain why they are not accessible. 

Any new videos will meet accessibility standards.

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Preparation of this statement

This statement was prepared on 28 November 2019. It was last reviewed on 15 March 2022.

This website was last tested on 14 March 2022. The test was carried out by our Web & Systems Team.

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