Accessibility statement for The Literary Encyclopedia

This website is run by The Literary Dictionary Company Ltd.  We are committed to providing an online environment that is accessible to everyone, including individuals with visual, hearing, cognitive, or motor impairments, in accordance with the Public Sector Bodies (Websites and Mobile Applications) (No. 2) Accessibility Regulations 2018.

In line with these goals, we follow the general principles of web usability and universal design and, where feasible, endeavour to make the Literary Encyclopedia platform accessible to all regardless of physical or cognitive impairment or the device used. We are currently partially compliant with the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines version 2.1 AA standard, due to the non-compliances listed below.

How accessible this website is

Most of our website is already accessible in accordance with WCAG 2.1. We are making ongoing improvements, however, in order to deliver improved accessibility compliance over the coming months and beyond.

Non-compliance with the accessibility regulations:

A few parts of this website are not fully accessible.

  • Non-text content: our images do not have a text alternative, so people using a screen reader cannot access the information. In most cases we provide captions. However, images form less than 2% of the content we provide, and are not essential to the service we provide.
  • Older functions (such as Author Chronologies) are difficult to navigate in an accessible manner.
  • Many of our PDFs do not meet accessibility standards - for example, they may not be structured so they’re accessible to a screen reader. This does not meet WCAG 2.1 success criterion 4.1.2. However, our use of PDFs (as a download option for articles, for instance) is secondary to the provision of our content, which is primarily available in HTML format.
  • The third party content used in creating timelines or the social media ‘share’ buttons.

Areas currently identified for improvement include:

  • Improve how elements are read out by screen readers
  • Improve our provision of alt text
  • Improve the usability of dynamic content such as dropdowns and filters for screen readers
  • Add captions to tables where they are missing

Since commencing our programme of improvement, we have delivered or are in the process of finalising the following improvements:

  • The text reflows in a single column when you change the size of the browser
  • You can skip to the main content in the page header
  • Improved use of headings to correctly organise content
  • Improved use of tables to correctly organise content
  • Corrected or removed invisible links
  • Added/are in the process of adding captions to tables

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 the Managing Editor.

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).

How we tested this website

This website was last tested during December 2019. Since we are a small company, a detailed accessibility audit performed by a third party would have been a disproportionate burden on our resources. In addition, most of the content and functionality we offer is in the form of text (rather than images, videos, embedded content, tables etc.), so easier to make WCAG 2.1 AA compliant. We therefore opted for a basic check, which was carried out in-house by our own systems engineer, using the software Total Validator. We tested our main website platform, available at

This statement was prepared on 25/01/2019.

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