Accessibility statement for www.kew.org, support.kew.org and other websites managed by Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew as indicated. This does not cover our science sites or shop, which have separate statements.
These websites are run by Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. We want as many people as possible to be able to use our websites. For example, that means 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 tried to make the text on our websites as simple as possible to understand. Sometimes we use scientific language to explain our work. When we do this we try to offer an explanation in plain English, or link to content elsewhere on our websites that will provide more information.
AbilityNet has advice on making your device easier to use if you have a disability.
How accessible are our websites?
We know some parts of our websites are not fully accessible.
Keyboard / Voice input
- Several elements do not include a visible focus indicator
- The keyboard focus is not sequential in some areas
- Some buttons cannot be accessed with a keyboard
- Hotjar pop up survey functionality is limited for keyboard only users. This is not in control of Kew but we have contacted Hotjar and they have recently published their intention to make improvements in 2022
- Some interactive control and error states have low colour contrast
- Screen reader navigation by headings is not fully optimized on some pages
- Some links are missing descriptive link text
- Some videos rely on sight to understand what is going on in them
- Common names that are in a foreign language are pronounced in English
- Form error messages and controls are not automatically announced
- The disabled and current state of some elements is not announced
- Custom controls, such as accordions, toggle buttons, switches, tooltips, date pickers and tabs are difficult to use
- Dynamic page updates on the What’s On pages are announced but could be lengthy.
- Some error messages only appear for a few seconds
- For support.kew.org (membership and donate journeys)
- When using a keyboard and the Chrome browser, focus might become trapped in the credit card number field.
- A few bits of text lack contrast
- The focus states and indicators lack contrast
- Several form fields do not have the correct markup
- For tickets.kew.org (membership and donate journeys)
- The order summary markup does not match the table layout used. Information inside is accessible but might be more difficult to understand for screen reader users.
- Some minor pieces of markup did not adhere to HTML specifications.
- Input field were missing autocomplete values to support automatic filling of personal information.
- The auto complete function on the address field is not accessible but users can field in their address manual.
- The World Pay payment interface has known accessibility barriers but is out of control for Kew. Issues have been reported to World Pay for remediation.
- When using a keyboard some items in the focus order are hidden.
- Many items might not receive visible focus indicator
- Focus order isn’t always logical with the page layout
- Not all components are markup with the appropriate HTML to convey purpose
- Heading levels are skipped, making the page structure less clear
- Alt text for some images wasn’t informative
- On-screen buttons for the menu are too small to operate easily
- There was no audio description available for videos that required it.
- When zooming in there is a persistent navigation bar blocking large part of the screen
- On-screen buttons for the menu are too small to operate easily
- There was no audio description available for videos that required it
- The usage of the title attribute hides extra information for keyboard users
- The focus order on the search results page does not match the visual information
- Content is obscured and scrolling occurs in both directions when zooming in past 150%
- The green on white text combination does not meet contrast requirements
- The white text on images does not meet contrast requirements
- Several links are only indicated by use of colour
- Several interactive elements don’t meet contrast requirements, like focus outlines and activated states on several buttons
- Some images contain alt text but are considered decorative as they duplicate information
- Visible sections of the page, like the header and footer, aren't marked up as such
- Some texts and lists are visible headings but aren’t marked up as such
- Interactive buttons to sort tables don’t convey their current state (ascending/descending)
- Related form fields aren’t grouped using fieldsets to indicate they belong together
- Various inputs are missing a visible label which makes it difficult to identify them and for speech software to activate
- Undescriptive link texts like “click here” can be found across the pages
- Page titles don’t reflect the current page
- Parts written in other languages don’t have that language identified for screen readers
- Multiple interactive elements act like buttons but aren’t marked up as such
- The sliders don’t communicate information like the currently selected slide and don’t give information on what’s being displayed
- The pagination is unclear in general as it does not indicate current page, it’s not marked up as a navigational landmark and the link text isn’t clear enough
- Tabbed interface components are difficult to use as they don’t have the expended roles and interactions
- Input fields are missing autocomplete values to help users automatically fill in form information
- Visitors will be timed out after a period of inactivity and redirected to the homepage
Feedback and contact information
If you need information on this website in a different format like accessible PDF, large print, easy read, audio recording or braille:
- email email@example.com
- call 020 8332 5655
We'll consider your request and get back to you in 3-5 working days.
What to do if you can't book tickets or purchase something on one of our websites
We are working to improve our ticketing websites as part of a large programme of work to improve visitor experience at Kew. In the meantime:
- if you wish to make a group booking please email firstname.lastname@example.org
- if you wish to book tickets for a member event ticketed through tickets.kew.org or purchase a membership please email email@example.com
- if you wish to book tickets for anything else via tickets.kew.org or See Tickets please email firstname.lastname@example.org
- if you wish to purchase anything from our online shop please email email@example.com
Reporting accessibility problems with our websites
We’re always looking to improve the accessibility of our websites. If you find any problems that aren’t listed on this page or think we’re not meeting accessibility requirements, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
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).
Technical information about the accessibility of kew.org and support.kew.org
Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew is committed to making its websites accessible, in accordance with the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018.
This website is partially compliant with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines version 2.1 AA standard, due to the non-compliances and exemptions listed below.
The content listed below is non-accessible for the following reasons.
Non-compliance with the accessibility regulations on kew.org
- Several elements do not include a visible focus indicator, failing “Focus Visible” (2.4.7).
- Several controls do not meet the contrast threshold, failing “Non-Text Contrast” (1.4.11)
- The date picker is not easily dismissible, failing “Content on Hover or Focus” (1.4.13)
- Some key icons, controls, and other images are missing alternative text, failing “Non-Text Content” (1.1.1)
- Some content and page structure are not marked up using the most appropriate markup meaning that screen readers users miss out on some meaning and functionality. Some headings are used incorrectly. Several form controls are not correctly structured. These fail “Info and Relationships” (1.3.1)
- Entering a past date in the date inputs and moving keyboard focus away causes the date to change to the present date, failing “Error Identification” (3.3.1)
- At least one video does not have speech and communicated through embedded text or imagery and does not have an alternative in the form of a transcript or a synchronized audio track. This fails “Audio-only & Video-only” (1.2.1)
- Some links do not clearly describe the purpose of the link or which page would be reached if someone followed the link, failing “Link Purpose” (2.4.4)
- Content written in different languages (common names of plants) was not identified in the code of the page, failing “Language of Parts” (3.1.2)
- Several buttons and controls do not use the appropriate roles. Disabled and current states are not programmatically communicated. Custom controls, such as accordions, toggle buttons, switches, tooltips, date pickers and tabs, have not been fully implemented in a way that makes them easy for assistive technology users to use. This fails “Name, Role, Value” (4.1.2)
- The HTML code of the pages is not always nested according to the specification, failing “Parsing” (4.1.1)
Non-compliance with the accessibility regulations on support.kew.org (donation and membership journeys)
- The help icon for the CVV field does not include a visible focus indicator, failing “Focus Visible” (2.4.7)
- A few areas of text do not meet the minimum contrast threshold, failing “Contrast (minimum)” (1.4.3)
- A few inputs do not meet the contrast threshold, failing “Non-Text Contrast” (1.4.11)
- All pages have the same title, failing “Page Titled” (2.4.2)
Non-compliance with the accessibility regulations on growwild.kew.org
- Some form fields do not meet the contrast threshold, failing “Non-Text Contrast” (1.4.11)
- Some content is overlapped when the page is zoomed in, failing “Reflow” (1.4.10)
- An aria-required attribute has not been implemented on required form fields, failing “Info & Relationships” (1.3.1)
- Radio buttons have not been grouped in a field set, failing “Info & Relationships” (1.3.1)
- Where a video has visual content that is not described by audio, there is not alternative for people with visual impairments, failing “Audio-only & Video-only” (1.2.1)
- The “email address” input on the Newsletter Signup has no autocomplete attribute, failing “Identify Input Purpose” (1.3.5)
Non-compliance with accessibility regulations on endeavour.kew.org
- Some elements in the drag and drop equipment activity are not in sequential order, failing “Keyboard” (2.1.1)
- A visible focus indicator was missing on the linked cards, expanded profile submenu, certain links, radio buttons and buttons, failing “Focus Visible” (2.4.7)
- Some elements are missing role = img, failing “Non-text Content” (1.1.1)
- The fixed navigation bar causes an obstruction when the page is zoomed in and it is not possible to access some items in the menu bar, failing “Reflow” (1.4.10) and “Keyboard” (2.1.1)
- HTML didn’t conform to the W3C specification. Not all validation issues effect accessibility but there was an error that could change the way the page was read to assistive technologies, failing “Parsing” (4.1.1)
Non-compliance with accessibility regulations on tickets.kew.org
- Tabular data wasn’t marked up using HTML table element (fails 1.3.1 Info and Relationships)
- HTML did not conform the W3C HTML specifications. There were duplicate IDs on the pages, potentially causing problems with screen reader associations. (fails 4.1.1 Parsing)
- The relevant autocomplete attributes were missing from input fields requesting personal information. (fails 1.3.5 Input purpose)
We plan to resolve the issues on kew.org, support.kew.org, growwild.kew.org and endeavour.kew.org over the next 12 months and will update this statement when progress has been made.
Adopt a Seed
Adopt a Seed is a fundraising initiative that allows members of the public to ‘adopt’ a seed in the Millennium Seed Bank. As part of an organisation-wide programme to improve visitor experience, we are in the process of replacing the majority of our ecommerce platforms, including Adopt a Seed. This programme is underway and we expect Adopt a Seed to be migrated into a new platform by 2023.
Prints.kew.org is used to sell prints-on-demand of images held within RBG Kew’s collections. As part of an organisation-wide programme to improve visitor experience, we are in the process of replacing the majority of our ecommerce platforms, including our Prints on Demand offer. This programme is underway and we expect the new platform to be functional by 2023.
Some pages on growwild.kew.org have Dotdigital forms embedded. Addressing accessibility issues on these forms would require development work by Dotdigital. As part of an organisation-wide programme to improve visitor experience, we are in the process of reviewing some systems, including the CRM. This programme is underway and we expect Dotdigital forms to be migrated into a new platform by early 2024.
Tickets sold via See Tickets
We sell tickets to Kew Gardens and Wakehurst via a third-party supplier, See Tickets. We have just undergone a procurement for our online ticketing services, and have made WCAG 2.1 AA compliance a requirement of the procurement. An updated ticketing service is due to launch in early 2024, and as such we believe the current service to be a disproportionate burden to fix.
Tickets sold via tickets.kew.org
Although we sell the majority of our tickets via third parties, we do sell tickets to some smaller events via the tickets.kew.org website. We also use this to facilitate group bookings. This site is built on a third-party platform which is currently being upgraded to reach WCAG 2.1 AA standards. This site will re-launch in 2023, and as such we believe the current site to be a disproportionate burden to fix.
Content that’s not within the scope of the accessibility regulations
Temperate House microsite
We believe that our Temperate House microsite, that was created for the launch of our renovated Temperate House is exempt from the Public Sector Accessibility regulations as it is a legacy site and has not been updated since 2018. In time, we plan to migrate the content contained within this site to kew.org.
What we’re doing to improve accessibility
In the next 6-12 months we are making significant improvements to kew.org, support.kew.org, tickets.kew.org, growwild.kew.org and endeavour.kew.org to address the issues outlined above.
We are also rebuilding or significantly updating the following websites:
- online ticketing via See Tickets
Where else to find information about the accessibility of our sites:
Preparation of this accessibility statement
This statement was prepared on 19th September 2019. It was last reviewed on 6th May 2022.
This website was last tested in April 2022. The test was carried out by Nomensa.
We took a sample of pages that represented the templates and types of content available on the website and tested the donation and membership journeys. We also ran an automated scan of the website to find areas that might have different issues.