What are cookies?
Cookies are small text files that websites create on its users’ computers. Their purpose is for the website to recognise its users on subsequent visits or to authorize other designated websites to recognise these users for a particular purpose.
In general cookies do many things which make your experience of the Internet much smoother and more interactive. For instance, they are used to remember your preferences on sites you visit often, and they remember your user ID and the contents of your shopping baskets, they help you navigate between pages more efficiently. They also help ensure that the advertisements that you see online are more relevant to you and your interests, and some data collected helps to detect browsing patterns and approximate geographical location to improve user experience.
Information collected by cookies is now classed as personal data.
We use the services provided by Google Analytics (who employ cookies) for various reasons: they let us track our own performance, so we can improve our website and tailor its content to what our visitors want, with the expectation of improving your overall experience of the website. these cookies we use allow us to calculate how many visitors we have and how long they stay on our site, where they visit us from, the equipment they use (mobile, tablet, PC), etc.
We may also include links on our site to goods and services offered by third parties and we may be paid some commission if you subsequently decide to make a purchase. Cookies may be used to track your visits to third party sites to help ensure that we are paid the correct amounts. Please note that these commercial arrangements do not influence our content in any way.
We do believe that your experience of the site would be adversely affected if you opted out of the cookies we use.
What types of cookie are there and which ones do we use?
These companies may use “Persistent cookies”, which remain on a user’s device for a set period of time specified in the cookie. They are activated each time that the user visits the website that created that particular cookie.
The function of cookies differs:
Performance cookies. They collect data for statistical purposes on how visitors use a website, they don’t contain personal information such as names and email addresses, and are used to improve your user experience of a website.
Here are some examples of how we use performance cookies: Gathering data about visits to the website, including numbers of visitors and visits, length of time spent on the site, pages clicked on or where visitors have come from. For comparison with other websites using data collected by industry-accepted measurement and research companies.
Information supplied by performance cookies helps us to understand how you use the website; for example, whether or not you have visited before, what you looked at or clicked on and how you found us. We can then use this data to help improve our services.
We use independent analytics companies such as Google (Google Analytics) to perform these services for us and when this is the case, these cookies may be set by a third party company (third party cookies).
Advertising and targeting cookies: are used to deliver advertisements more relevant to you, but can also limit the number of times you see an advertisement, and be used to chart the effectiveness of an ad campaign by tracking users’ clicks. They can also provide security in transactions. They are usually placed by third-party advertising networks with a website operator’s permission, but can be placed by the operator themselves. They can remember that you have visited a website, and this information can be shared with other organisations, including other advertisers. They cannot determine who you are though, as the data collected is never linked to your profile.
How do I control my cookies?
You should be aware that any preferences will be lost if you delete all cookies and many websites will not work properly or you will lose some functionality. We do not recommend turning cookies off when using our website for these reasons.
Most browsers accept cookies automatically, but you can alter the settings of your browser to erase cookies or prevent automatic acceptance if you prefer. Generally you have the option to see what cookies you’ve got and delete them individually, block third party cookies or cookies from particular sites, accept all cookies, to be notified when a cookie is issued or reject all cookies.
Managing performance cookies
It is possible to opt out of having your anonymised browsing activity within websites recorded by performance cookies.
We use the following companies and you can opt out of their cookies by clicking on the relevant links. Please note that this will take you to the relevant third party’s website and generate a “no thanks” cookie, which will stop any further cookies being set by those third parties.
Don’t forget that by not allowing performance cookies, this stops us from being able to learn what people like or don’t like about our website so that we can make it better.