British Cartoon Archive and University of Kent Special Collections accessibility statement

This accessibility statement applies to: the British Cartoon Archive (BCA) online catalogue ( and Special Collections online catalogue ( Both catalogues are run by the University of Kent and use CalmView, a third-party web publishing platform for archives, developed by Axiell. The content of the online catalogues are developed to meet the accessibility standards outlined in this statement.

View the site your way 

There are a number of customisation options for your browser and device that could help you use the archives and other websites more effectively.  

AbilityNet provide advice on making your device easier to use if you have a disability. 

Explore some of our recommendations for tools that can make your online experience better

Feedback and contact information 

Please contact us if you have an accessibility query including: 

  • If you are experiencing issues with accessing information or using the British Cartoon Archive or Special Collections online catalogue 
  • If you find an accessibility problem not listed on this statement 
  • If you have positive feedback on the accessibility considerations made.  

When you contact us there is a process in place that will acknowledge your contact, tell you who is dealing with it and give you a timescale by which you can expect a reply. 

Alternative formats 

We have designed our content to be as accessible as possible. If you still experience barriers, you can request alternative formats

For more information please contact us.  

Reporting accessibility problems with this website

We’re always looking to improve the accessibility of this website. If you find any problems not listed on this page or think we’re not meeting accessibility requirements contact us to register your difficulty. This helps us improve our systems. 

Enforcement procedure 

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 this website’s accessibility 

The University of Kent is committed to making its website and associated subdomains accessible, in accordance with the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018.

Compliance Status 

The British Cartoon Archive and Special Collections catalogues are partially compliant with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines version 2.1 AA standard, due to the non-compliances and exemptions listed below. 

Non-accessible content 

We formally test the accessibility of key user journeys that represent the breadth of content across our website on a regular basis against WCAG 2.1 AA standards.  

Some parts of the website may not work for everyone. Below are known issues that we either need to fix, cannot fix, or do not need to fix right now. 

If you find an issue that we have missed please contact us.

The content listed below is non-accessible for the following reasons.

Non-compliance with the accessibility regulations 

This section covers issues that we need to fix and are working to do so. 

Content issues 

The content on the British Cartoon Archive and Special Collections online catalogue are predominantly archival standard catalogue records and digital images. Other content may include audio material which may not have alternative formats (such as transcriptions) by default. If you would like to access this material in alternative formats, please contact us to discuss your requirements.

Some images contain embedded text that is part of the work itself. The images are accompanied with metadata created by the curators of the archive. Text content within the image (such as dialogue or signs), or captions accompanying the image, are included as true text in the accompanying metadata. There will be some description of, or contextual information about, the image within the archival catalogue record, but the level of description is not consistent across all records.   

Full accessible adjustments are not always possible, for example creating alternative text descriptions for every item in the archive. Please see the Disproportionate burden section for further details.  

We will create accessible adjustments, such as providing alternative text descriptions, upon request following a discussion of requirements with the requesting user. Please contact us for further information. 

Platform issues 

Page titles

Some of the page titles do not accurately describe the content of the page (WCAG: 2.4.2).

Form labels

Some of the form elements are missing labels which explain the type of content to enter (WCAG: 3.3.2).

Mislabelled elements or missing labels

Some of the user interface elements, such as buttons and headings, do not have appropriate labels that define their roles. This includes labels which do not match the purpose and elements which do not have a label (WCAG: 4.1.2).

Images without a description

Images (from the database) do not have meaningful alternative text descriptions. Instead they have the filename (eg Af1234.jpg). The cartoon may contain embedded text such as a caption or speech bubble. Please see the Disproportionate burden section for further information on this (WCAG: 1.1.1)

Buttons are image only or have embedded text 

Some of the buttons in the user interface use images with text embedded in the image instead of rendering the button using real text and CSS styling (WCAG: 4.1.2).

Page structure missing landmarks

Some of the pages have elements which are not contained in appropriate landmarks such as ARIA labels and HTML 5 tags (WCAG: 1.3.1).

Issues with focus indicator 

Some elements may not always display effective focus indication. (WCAG: 2.4.7).

Incorrectly tagged decorative images

Images which are purely decorative are not identified as such. (WCAG: 1.1.1).

Issues with the accessibility mode option

The buttons (‘Search’ and ‘Text Only’) are not altered when using the accessibility option to increase the text. If the user performs a search, then adjusts the text size using the accessibility mode, it refreshes the page and loses the search and its results.

Contrast Issues

Some pages contain elements with low contrast between the elements and its background particularly when under focus. This can cause the text to be difficult to read, especially for those with low vision, poor eyesight or colour blindness.(WCAG: 1.4.3).

CalmView is developed by a third-party, Axiell, with customisation applied locally by the university. Thus, some of the issues with the colour contrast may be fixed by Kent, however, some issues may be part of the CalmView platform that we cannot control (WCAG: 1.4.3).

The website’s language is not specified

The website does not have a language specified. This can cause issues for the accuracy of screen reader applications. (WCAG: 3.1.1)

Headings are not sequential

Some pages may not contain consistent marked-up headings. (WCAG: 1.3.1).

Text styled to look like a heading but lacking appropriate HTML tag

Some of the text on the page has been styled to appear visually like a heading. This means emphasis is only visual and the heading is not defined with an appropriate HTML tag (WCAG: 2.4.6 and 1.3.1).

Disproportionate burden 

This section covers issues that we cannot fix right now. We’ve assessed the cost of fixing these issues but believe that doing so would be a disproportionate burden within the meaning of the regulations. 

We are unable to provide alternative text descriptions for all visual materials within the British Cartoon Archive and Special Collections catalogues.

We have created a full disproportionate burden assessment for the British Cartoon Archive (BCA) and Special Collections online catalogues that is available on request.

If you are unable to access any content on our online catalogues, please contact us to discuss your requirements.

Content that is not within the scope of the accessibility regulations

This section covers issues that we do not need to fix right now. The law calls these exemptions.  

Third-party content 

The British Cartoon Archive online catalogue and Special Collections (SC) online catalogue uses CalmView, a third-party web publishing platform for archives developed by Axiell. Some aspects of its accessibility are outside of our immediate control.

We are currently investigating the accessibility benefits of upgrading our online catalogue CalmView.

The images depicted on the British Cartoon Archive and Special Collections online catalogues may be owned by a third-party. This may or may not be the creator of the item themselves, and they may be living or deceased. It may not possible to ask the original creator to assist with the creation of accessibility requirements such as providing a definitive alternative text. 

British Cartoon Archive and University of Kent Special Collections staff have undertaken training to understand how to effectively describe the visual context of content to ensure that future records are created as accessibly as possible. 

To help accessibility compliance across the sector, the University of Kent supports searchBOX, a centralised, independent directory of third-party accessibility information. 

searchBOX catalogues the contact information and accessibility statements of third-party suppliers, enables the sharing of community-generated accessibility statements, and allows users to map their supplier ecosystem. 

Users can access third-party accessibility statements using the free searchBOX Finder service. 

The University of Kent encourages all our partners and suppliers to support this effort by ensuring that their accessibility information is included in the searchBOX directory. 

Preparation of this accessibility statement 

This statement was prepared on 3rd July 2020. It was last reviewed on 20th March 2022. 

This website was last tested on 29 May 2020. The test was carried out by University of Kent.

Last updated