A cookie is a file containing an identifier (a string of letters and numbers) that is sent by a web server to a web browser, and stored by the browser. The identifier is then sent back to the server each time the browser requests a page from the server. 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.
Cookies do not contain any information that personally identifies you, but personal information that we store about you may be linked, by us, to the information stored in and obtained from cookies. We may use the information we obtain from your use of our cookies for the following purposes:
- To recognise your computer when you visit our website.
- To improve the website’s usability, validating contact forms for example.
- To analyse the use of our website.
Third party cookies
When you use our website, you may also be sent third party cookies. Social sharing, video and other services we offer are run by other companies. These companies may drop cookies on your computer when you use them on our site or if you are already logged in to them.
They may use the information they obtain from your use of their cookies:
- To track your browser across multiple websites.
- To build a profile of your web surfing.
- To target advertisements which may be of particular interest to you.
In addition, we use Google Analytics to analyse the use of this website. Google Analytics generates statistical and other information about website use by means of cookies, which are stored on users' computers. The information generated relating to our website is used to create reports about the use of the website. Google will store this information.
Most browsers allow you to refuse to accept cookies. Blocking all cookies will, however, have a negative impact upon the usability of many websites.
You can also delete cookies already stored on your computer but doing this may have a negative impact on the usability of many websites.