You may have heard of internet cookies…you may know all about them. To confirm, cookies are small text files that are placed on your computer by websites you visit.
Cookies allow us to identify you (or, more accurately, your computer) when you visit our website. Knowing how often people are visiting each page of our website helps us work out how and where to improve our website.
Types of cookie
Necessary cookies help make our website usable by enabling basic functions like page navigation and access to secure areas of the website. The website cannot function properly without these cookies.
Performance cookies help us understand how visitors interact with our websites by collecting and reporting information anonymously.
Marketing cookies are used to track visitors across websites. The intention is to display content and ads that are relevant and engaging for the individual user and thereby more valuable.
Persistent cookies and session cookies
Persistent cookies remain on a visitor’s device for a set amount of time. This means for example that we can identify when a site visitor is a repeat visitor or new to us.
Session cookies are created temporarily and last for as long as your browser window is open, being automatically deleted after you close your browser. These allow us to link the actions of a user during a visit to the website, to provide a consistent experience.
The cookies we use
Details about the cookies we use are set out in the table below. Some of these are third party cookies – see the section on third party cookies below for more information.
|DYNSRV||This cookie is added by our load balancer to track which web server to send the visitor to. Its purpose is to improve the performance of the website.||Session|
|These cookies are used by a security feature to protect the site against malicious attacks.||Between 20 minutes and 1 day|
|_ga||This is a Google Analytics cookie. It helps us monitor the use and performance of our website.||2 years|
|_gat||This is a Google Analytics cookie. It is used to throttle request rates.||1 minute|
|_gid||This is a Google Analytics cookie. It helps us monitor the use and performance of our website.||1 minute|
|__unam, __sharethis_cookie_test__||The “__unam” cookie is set as part of the ShareThis service and monitors “click-stream” activity, e.g. web pages viewed, navigation from page to page, time spent on each page etc. The ShareThis service only personally identifies you if you have separately signed up with ShareThis for a ShareThis account and given them your consent.||15 months|
Third party cookies
First party cookies are the cookies that are set by this website; third party cookies are set by other websites.
Control your cookie settings
If you want, you can block cookies by changing the settings on your browser – we have set out below links to the ‘Help’ pages of some major browsers which explain how you can do this. Blocking the cookies we use may have an adverse impact upon the presentation of some or all of our website.
General guidance on how to manage your cookies can be found here:
Specific guidance on how to manage cookie options for common website browsers can be found here: