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Cookie Policy

Information about our use of cookies

Our website uses cookies to distinguish you from other users of our website. This helps us to provide you with a good experience when you browse our website and also allows us to improve our site. By continuing to browse the site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies.


A cookie is a small file of letters and numbers that we store on your browser or the hard drive of your computer if you agree. Cookies contain information that is transferred to your computer’s hard drive.


We use the following cookies:


  • Strictly necessary cookies. These are cookies that are required for the operation of our website. They include, for example, cookies that enable you to submit your details to our website.
  • Analytical/performance cookies. They allow us to recognise and count the number of visitors and to see how visitors move around our website when they are using it. This helps us to improve the way our website works, for example, by ensuring that users are finding what they are looking for easily.
  • Functionality cookies. These are used to recognise you when you return to our website. This enables us to personalise our content for you.
  • Targeting cookies. These cookies record your visit to our website, the pages you have visited and the links you have followed. We will use this information to make our website more relevant to your interests. We may also share this information with third parties for this purpose.


You can find more information about the individual cookies we use and the purposes for which we use them in the table below:


Name Purpose
_gat This cookie name is associated with Google Universal Analytics, according to documentation it is used to throttle the request rate – limiting the collection of data on high traffic sites. It expires after 10 minutes.
_gid This cookie name is associated with Google Universal Analytics. This appears to be a new cookie and as of Spring 2017 no information is available from Google. It appears to store and update a unique value for each page visited.
_ga This cookie name is associated with Google Universal Analytics – which is a significant update to Google’s more commonly used analytics service. This cookie is used to distinguish unique users by assigning a randomly generated number as a client identifier. It is included in each page request in a site and used to calculate visitor, session and campaign data for the sites analytics reports. By default it is set to expire after 2 years, although this is customisable by website owners.
_atuvc This cookie is associated with the AddThis social sharing widget which is commonly embedded in websites to enable visitors to share content with a range of networking and sharing platforms. It stores an updated page share count.
_atuvs This cookie is associated with the AddThis social sharing widget which is commonly embedded in websites to enable visitors to share content with a range of networking and sharing platforms. This is believed to be a new cookie from AddThis which is not yet documented, but has been categorised on the assumption it serves a similar purpose to other cookies set by the service.
csrftoken This domain is owned by Instagram, a photosharing application. It appears to be used for integration with external web site services.
ouid This domain is owned by Addthis. AddThis provides web widgets that site owners embed into their pages or other content, to enable visitors to create and share links to the content across social networks. They also make use of the data collected to provide advertisers and marketers with profile information for targeted, behavioural advertising. It has also recently been reported that Addthis makes use of experimental browser and canvas fingerprinting techniques, which enables tracking of visitors without the use of cookies. These techniques also mean that most browser privacy settings are bypassed.
loc This domain is owned by Addthis. AddThis provides web widgets that site owners embed into their pages or other content, to enable visitors to create and share links to the content across social networks. They also make use of the data collected to provide advertisers and marketers with profile information for targeted, behavioural advertising. It has also recently been reported that Addthis makes use of experimental browser and canvas fingerprinting techniques, which enables tracking of visitors without the use of cookies. These techniques also mean that most browser privacy settings are bypassed. Stores the visitors geolocation to record location of sharer
xtc This domain is owned by Addthis. AddThis provides web widgets that site owners embed into their pages or other content, to enable visitors to create and share links to the content across social networks. They also make use of the data collected to provide advertisers and marketers with profile information for targeted, behavioural advertising. It has also recently been reported that Addthis makes use of experimental browser and canvas fingerprinting techniques, which enables tracking of visitors without the use of cookies. These techniques also mean that most browser privacy settings are bypassed.
bt2 This domain is owned by Addthis. AddThis provides web widgets that site owners embed into their pages or other content, to enable visitors to create and share links to the content across social networks. They also make use of the data collected to provide advertisers and marketers with profile information for targeted, behavioural advertising. It has also recently been reported that Addthis makes use of experimental browser and canvas fingerprinting techniques, which enables tracking of visitors without the use of cookies. These techniques also mean that most browser privacy settings are bypassed.
mus This domain is owned by Addthis. AddThis provides web widgets that site owners embed into their pages or other content, to enable visitors to create and share links to the content across social networks. They also make use of the data collected to provide advertisers and marketers with profile information for targeted, behavioural advertising. It has also recently been reported that Addthis makes use of experimental browser and canvas fingerprinting techniques, which enables tracking of visitors without the use of cookies. These techniques also mean that most browser privacy settings are bypassed.
uid This domain is owned by Addthis. AddThis provides web widgets that site owners embed into their pages or other content, to enable visitors to create and share links to the content across social networks. They also make use of the data collected to provide advertisers and marketers with profile information for targeted, behavioural advertising. It has also recently been reported that Addthis makes use of experimental browser and canvas fingerprinting techniques, which enables tracking of visitors without the use of cookies. These techniques also mean that most browser privacy settings are bypassed.
uvc This domain is owned by Addthis. AddThis provides web widgets that site owners embed into their pages or other content, to enable visitors to create and share links to the content across social networks. They also make use of the data collected to provide advertisers and marketers with profile information for targeted, behavioural advertising. It has also recently been reported that Addthis makes use of experimental browser and canvas fingerprinting techniques, which enables tracking of visitors without the use of cookies. These techniques also mean that most browser privacy settings are bypassed. Tracks how often a user interacts with AddThis
di2 This domain is owned by Addthis. AddThis provides web widgets that site owners embed into their pages or other content, to enable visitors to create and share links to the content across social networks. They also make use of the data collected to provide advertisers and marketers with profile information for targeted, behavioural advertising. It has also recently been reported that Addthis makes use of experimental browser and canvas fingerprinting techniques, which enables tracking of visitors without the use of cookies. These techniques also mean that most browser privacy settings are bypassed.
vc This domain is owned by Addthis. AddThis provides web widgets that site owners embed into their pages or other content, to enable visitors to create and share links to the content across social networks. They also make use of the data collected to provide advertisers and marketers with profile information for targeted, behavioural advertising. It has also recently been reported that Addthis makes use of experimental browser and canvas fingerprinting techniques, which enables tracking of visitors without the use of cookies. These techniques also mean that most browser privacy settings are bypassed.
bku This domain is owned by Blue Kai. The main business activity is: Advertising/Audience Targeting
bkdc This domain is owned by Blue Kai. The main business activity is: Advertising/Audience Targeting
_cc_cc This domain is owned by Lotame. The main business activity is: Data Management Platform – Targeting /Advertising
_cc_id This domain is owned by Lotame. The main business activity is: Data Management Platform – Targeting /Advertising
_cc_aud This domain is owned by Lotame. The main business activity is: Data Management Platform – Targeting /Advertising
_cc_dc This domain is owned by Lotame. The main business activity is: Data Management Platform – Targeting /Advertising
SEUNCY This domain is owned by Semasio, a German business specialising in profiling and behavioural targeting of consumers.
TapAd_DID This domain is owned by Tapad Inc. a US based company that provides technology to track users across devices to enhance targeting capabilities.
TapAd_TS This domain is owned by Tapad Inc. a US based company that provides technology to track users across devices to enhance targeting capabilities.
_cc_cc This domain is owned by Lotame. The main business activity is: Data Management Platform – Targeting /Advertising
lu This domain is owned by Facebook, which is the world’s largest social networking service. As a third party host provider, it mostly collects data on the interests of users via widgets such as the ‘Like’ button found on many websites. This is used to serve targeted advertising to its users when logged into its services. In 2014 it also started serving up behaviourally targeted advertising on other websites, similar to most dedicated online marketing companies. Used to manage the login process, remembers user on return visit if they choose to stay logged in.


Please note that third parties (including, for example, advertising networks and providers of external services like web traffic analysis services) may also use cookies, over which we have no control. These cookies are likely to be analytical/performance cookies or targeting cookies.


You block cookies by activating the setting on your browser that allows you to refuse the setting of all or some cookies. However, if you use your browser settings to block all cookies (including essential cookies) you may not be able to access all or parts of our site.