Help with changing text size and colour, viewing documents, viewing BSL video, council social media and with Internet safety.

Access keys

This site does not use access keys.

Change font and text size

It is possible to change both the font and text size of all our pages.


The quick way to change font size in Internet Explorer, Firefox and Safari is to use the zoom function:

  • To zoom in Ctrl (cmd on a Mac) and +
  • To zoom out Ctrl (cmd on a Mac) and -
  • To reset to the default Ctrl (cmd on a Mac) and 0

Some browsers keep everything in proportion, increasing and decreasing page width and image size. Therefore if you zoom in you need to scroll the page sideways to read a complete line.

Change page colours

It is possible to change both the text and the background colours of all our pages. Below are details of how to do this in Internet Explorer and Firefox. It is not possible to set colours within Safari. Where possible we have given the keyboard shortcuts, shown in brackets.

Internet Explorer

  • From the tool bar, select Tools (Alt + T).
  • Select Internet Options (Shift + O). This will open a new window.
  • Select Colors (Alt + O). This will open a new window.
  • Uncheck 'Use Windows colors' (Shift + W).
  • Select the first of the coloured box (Shift + T). This will open a new window.
  • Select the colour you want.
  • Select OK. This will shut the window.
  • Repeat for the other coloured boxes background (Shift + B); visited (Shift + I); unvisited (Shift + N); hover (Shift + O).
  • Select OK. This will shut the window.
  • Select Accessibility (Alt + E). This will open a new window.
  • Check 'Ignore colors specified on web pages' (Alt + C). This will put a tick in the box.
  • Select OK. This will shut the window.
  • Select OK. This will close the last of the new windows and the page should be in the colours you have just set. If the page isn't, hold down the Ctrl button, press F5, then let them both go.

Further help and advice from Microsoft can be found by going to the accessibility section of the Microsoft web site.


  • From the tool bar, select Tools (Alt + T).
  • Select Internet Options (Shift + O). This will open a new window.
  • Select Content on the top bar of this new window (use the left and right arrow keys).
  • Select Colours (Alt + C). This will open a new window.
  • Either click on the first coloured box, or hit any of the arrow keys. This will open a new window.
  • Choose the colour you want. Clicking on the colour will close the window. Hitting return will close both this window and the 'Colours' window.
  • Repeat for the other three coloured boxes. If using the keyboard, you will need to tab to each one in turn.
  • Uncheck 'Use system colours' (Alt + S).
  • Uncheck 'Allow pages to chose their own colors, instead of my selection above' (Alt + A).
  • Select OK. This will shut the window.
  • Select OK. This will close the last of the new windows and the page should be in the colours you have just set.


Can't find what you need?

Think of different words or be more specific.
Example: Instead of policy, try vulnerable adults policy.

Search looks for words which start with your search word.
Example: woman automatically searches for woman, womans and woman's.

Making your search more accurate

Use quotes for a phrase, eg "adoption panel".

PDF documents

PDF documents look like a printed page and are often used for documents on this web site. Most computers will open them automatically, but you may need to download the latest version of the reader from the Adobe website for free.

Reading PDFs

When you select the link to a PDF, it will open in your browser window.

A toolbar will appear below the browser address bar, featuring a number of tools to help you view and search the document.

If you use a mouse, running your mouse over the icons in PDF reader, without clicking, will tell you what each of them does.

Especially useful are the page size tools. You can use these or the dropdown view menu to select a suitable view.


Sometimes a PDF file will open but only a blank page is visible. This may be because the view is zoomed into a blank section of the document. Use the dropdown view menu (bottom left hand corner of the screen) to select a suitable view, 100% or 'Fit Width' are usually best.

It may also be because the you are using an older version of the reader, you may want to upgrade to the latest version of the reader from the Adobe website.

If you are still having problems, try clicking on the link to the PDF file you want to see with your right mouse button (Control-click on Mac). This will bring up a small menu - if you select 'Save Target As' (or Save Link As) from this you will be able to save the file and open it outside the browser.

For more help visit the adobe reader help and support web site.

Online communities and social media

Online communities are websites that enable people who share a common interest to interact with each other. Bristol City Council uses some online communities such as Twitter, Flickr and YouTube to communicate with local residents and businesses.


Twitter is a free social networking and micro-blogging service that allows its users to send and read other users' updates (otherwise known as 'tweets'), which are text-based posts of up to 140 characters in length.

Bristol City Council 'tweets' a few times a day about news and events. You can follow us at @BristolCouncil.

We also have specialised Twitter accounts:

@AskBristol Webcasts, consultations, discussions, citizen ideas & e-petitions to help you engage and raise issues with us
@Bristol_Health BCC Health Policy, working in partnership with Bristol NHS, local charities and businesses, to promote health in our city
@ConnectBristol The City Council's digital development agency
@bristolmuseum Bristol's premier museum and art gallery houses world-class collections of art, archaeology, geology and natural history
@betterbybike Information on Bristol as First Cycle City
@BristolLibrary Information on Bristol Library Services
@stnicksmarket Information about Bristols St Nicholas Market


Flickr is a free online photo management and sharing application. We use Flickr to share and bring together all images of the city: Flickr: Bristol City Council.


YouTube is a free online video sharing application. We use YouTube to share videos about the work we do, our people and events: You tube: Bristol City Council.


Facebook is a free social networking website. Users can join networks organised by city, workplace, school and region to connect and interact with other people. Bristol City Council is our Facebook page.


Please follow safe surfing guidelines when using the Internet and social media:

The presence of any advertisement on online communities is not an endorsement of the authenticity or quality of the goods, services or website and Bristol City Council can not be held responsible for any claims arising in this respect.


Please take care not to make libellous statements. In law this means a statement that lowers the reputation of a person or organisation in the eyes of a reasonable person. By publishing such a statement we can both get into serious trouble. We will therefore take down any statement that could be deemed libellous.

Pre-election period

In the six week run-up to an election (local, general or European), councils have to be very careful not to do or say anything that could be seen to support any political party or candidate in any way. This is known as the 'pre-election period'. We will continue to publish important service announcements using social media but may have to remove responses if they are overtly party political.