Cookies are files, often including unique identifiers, that are sent by web servers to web browsers, and which may then be sent back to the server each time the browser requests a page from the server.
A cookie will typically contain the name of the domain from which the cookie has come, the “lifetime” of the cookie, and a value, usually a randomly generated unique number. Cookies can be used by web servers to identity and track users as they navigate different pages on a website, and to identify users returning to a website.
Cookies may be either “persistent” cookies or “session” cookies. A persistent cookie consists of a text file sent by a web server to a web browser, which will be stored by the browser and will remain valid until its set expiry date (unless deleted by the user before the expiry date). A session cookie, on the other hand, will expire at the end of the user session, when the web browser is closed.
Legislation state that you must be able to opt-out from having cookies stored on your computer.
We may use the Google Analytic tool (see http://www.google.com/analytics/ec-GB/index.html). Google Analytics uses “cookies”, which are text files placed on your computer, to help the website analyse how users use the site. The information generated by the cookie about your use of the website (including your IP address) will be transmitted to and stored by Google on servers in the United States. Google will use this information for the purpose of evaluating your use of the website, compiling reports on website activity for website operators and providing other services relating to website activity and Internet usage. Google may also transfer this information to third parties where required to do so by law, or where such third parties process the information on Google’s behalf. Google will not associate your IP address with any other data held by Google.
If you decide to disable cookies we record this so you don’t get asked the question again. You will find that most of the website works as expected although functions that rely on cookies are obviously disabled. These functions include using online forms (e.g. our enquiry form). We use a cookie to remember your cookie preferences, this has a couple of consequences:
If you ignore the questions the website will continue to set cookies as necessary. This approach of “implied opt-in” is specifically discussed and approved in the guidance notes issued by the Information Commissioner’s Office (the organisation charged with enforcement of this legislation).
Most web browsers allow some control of most cookies through the browser settings. To find out more about cookies, including how to see what cookies have been set and how to manage and delete them, visit www.aboutcookies.org or www.allaboutcookies.org.
To opt out of being tracked by Google Analytics visit http://tools.google.com/dlpage/gaoptout.