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What are cookies?

A cookie is a file containing an identifier (a string of letters and numbers) that is sent by a web server to a web browser and is stored by the browser. The identifier is then sent back to the server each time the browser requests a page from the server. Cookies may be either “persistent” cookies or “session” cookies: a persistent cookie will be stored by a web browser and will remain valid until its set expiry date, unless deleted by the user before the expiry date; a session cookie, on the other hand, will expire at the end of the user session, when the web browser is closed. Cookies do not typically contain any information that personally identifies a user, but they may identify your browser or device.

Granting us permission to use cookies

If the settings on your software that you are using to view this website (your browser) are adjusted to accept cookies we take this, and your continued use of our website, to mean that you are fine with this. Should you wish to remove or not use cookies from our site you can learn how to do this below, however doing so will likely mean that our site will not work as you would expect.

Our use of cookies

We use cookies for the following purposes:

Authentication – we use cookies to identify you (your device/browser etc) when you visit our website and as you navigate our website
Security – we use cookies as an element of the security measures used to protect our website and services generally.
Advertising – we use cookies to help us to display advertisements and affiliate product links.
Analysis – we use cookies to help us to analyze the use and performance of our website and services

We use Google Analytics to analyze the use of our website. Google Analytics gathers information about website use by means of cookies. The information gathered relating to our website is used to create reports about the use of our website. Google’s privacy policy is available at: https://www.google.com/policies/privacy/

There is no way to prevent these cookies being set other than to not use our site.

Social website cookies

We have included sharing buttons on our site to allow you to easily "Like" or share our content on the likes of Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram and Twitter.

The privacy implications on this will vary from social network to social network and will be dependent on the privacy settings you have chosen on these networks.

Anonymous visitor statistics cookies

We use cookies to compile visitor statistics such as how many people have visited our website, what type of technology they are using (e.g. Mac or Windows which helps to identify when our site isn't working as it should for particular technologies), how long they spend on the site, what page they look at etc. This helps us to continuously improve our website. These so called "analytics" programs also tell us if, on an anonymous basis, how people reached this site (e.g. from a search engine) and whether they have been here before.

Affiliate cookies

We have a number of affilliate programs who allow us to promote their products and we may recieve commissions on sales. Cookies are required to allow us to receive this commission from these programs and these cookies are usually provided by specialist companies (known as affiliate networks e.g. Awin). Neither us, the networks, or the program advertising are able to identify you personally. We ask you to support us by allowing these cookies which ultimately help us to offer you the service we do.

Turning cookies off

Most browsers allow you to refuse to accept cookies and to delete cookies. The methods for doing so vary from browser to browser, and from version to version. You can however obtain up-to-date information about blocking and deleting cookies via these links:

https://support.google.com/chrome/answer/95647?hl=en (Chrome);
https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/enable-and-disable-cookies-website-preferences (Firefox);
http://www.opera.com/help/tutorials/security/cookies/ (Opera);
https://support.microsoft.com/en-gb/help/17442/windows-internet-explorer-delete-manage-cookies (Internet Explorer);
https://support.apple.com/kb/PH21411 (Safari); and
https://privacy.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-10-microsoft-edge-and-privacy (Edge).

Please note that blocking cookies may have a negative impact on the functions of many websites, including our site. Some features of our site may cease to be available to you.