Accessibility statement

UPDATE as of 6 March 2023: Following the major redevelopment of the website, we are currently testing accessibility and will be updating this page soon. 

This accessibility statement applies to

This website is run by the National Portrait Gallery. We want as many people as possible to be able to use this website. 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 made the website text as simple as possible to understand.

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

How accessible this website is

We know some parts of this website are not fully accessible:

  • the text will not reflow in a single column when you change the size of the browser window
  • you cannot modify the line height or spacing of text
  • most older PDF documents are not fully accessible to screen reader software
  • some older videos do not have captions

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:

We’ll consider your request and get back to you within 10 days.

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: [email protected]

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).

Contacting us by phone or visiting us in person

You can call us on +44 (0) 20 7306 0055

We accept text relay service calls for people who are D/deaf, hearing impaired or have a speech impediment. The Gallery’s switchboard is currently operating a reduced service with limited staff resource from 10:00 – 17:00 Monday – Thursday.

Find out how to contact us

Technical information about this website’s accessibility

The National Portrait Gallery is committed to making its website accessible, in accordance with the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018.

Compliance status

This website is partially compliant with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines version 2.1 AA standard, due to the non-compliances we have identified, which are listed below.

Non-compliance with the accessibility regulations

  1. Third-party widgets running on our site, including the ‘subscribe to our newsletter’ notice, cannot be fully accessed using a keyboard. This fails WCAG 2.1.1 success criterion (Keyboard – Parts or all of the page cannot be accessed via keyboard). We are investigating this issue and are working to have this resolved by the end of December 2023.
  2. Some features on the website (listed here) do not have visible focus. This fails WCAG 4.7 success criterion (Focus Visible – No or barely visible focus). We are working to have this fixed by the end of December 2023.
    • There is no visible focus on some of the features on the carousels of which we are reducing and looking into alternatives.
    • Contact: On the 'subscribe to our newsletter' pop up notification, there is no clearly visible focus on the email input or subscribe button. This is currently disabled while we investigate further.
  3. Menu header items disappear of the screen at 400%.  We are working to have this fixed by the end of April 2023.
  4. In the header there is no skip to main content. We are working to have this fixed by the end of March 2023.
  5. On the ‘Blog’ page, not all link names are accessible by a screen reader or descriptive enough to tell a user where that link will take them. This fails against both success criteria WCAG 2.4.4 - Link Purpose (In Context) and WCAG 4.1.2 - Name, Role, Value. We are working to have this fixed by the end of December 2022.

What we’re doing to improve accessibility

We work with a range of partners to evaluate and continually improve our ways of working. We have previously commissioned audits by VocalEyes, RNID (the Royal National Institute for Deaf People), the RNIB (the Royal National Institute of Blind People) and Shape Arts.

We use a tool called SiteImprove to look at our accessibility at A, AA and AAA standards on an ongoing basis. Since 2020 we have continue working towards being completely compliant to the full AAA standards WCAG 2.1. We currently have an accessibility score of 72.6 out of 100. Over the course of 2023-24 we will be making this our priority.

We are also looking at the use of older technology across our webpages and are currently conducting an extensive audit of our learning resources and exhibition microsites. We are in the process of removing or converting content so that these are accessible to all audiences moving forward and expect to have this completed in late 2023.

Preparation of this accessibility statement

This statement was prepared on 10 August 2020.

This statement was reviewed and updated on 6 March 2023.

This website was last externally tested on 22 March 2021. The test was carried out by the Government Digital Service, and then supplementary audits carried out by the National Portrait Gallery between April and June 2021.

The Government Digital Service’s test was conducted using a mixture of simple manual checks and automated tests to find only the most common barriers to users with accessibility needs. Manual checks included using each page without a mouse, viewing the page at different zoom settings, and simulating viewing the page on a small screen.

The automated tests were completed using the latest version of axe.

Tests were completed using different settings in the Google Chrome browser on Mac OSX with a 15-inch screen.

Our ongoing audits have been conducted using SiteImprove.