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Our house style

This style guide sets rules for how information should be written and presented on, our corporate website.

All of our partnership sites (such as Safer Derbyshire and Park Smarter), and digital platforms should also follow the rules where possible. However, each individual partnership website may have a different audience, purpose or style, which means content may need to be adapted or tailored to best suit the user needs of each website separately.

This guide has been developed in conjunction with our corporate identity and our knowledge of good practice in publishing information online. Our house style follows the principles used by the Government Digital Service.

Why we have a style guide

We need to be able to provide information clearly to anyone visiting our website. Having a style guide means we can make sure everything published to the website is written in the correct format.

When followed, the style guide ensures a consistent style and tone to all published information. This helps visitors and staff view the council as a unified and efficient organisation, and strengthens the existing, easily recognisable, corporate identity. It also encourages return visits to the website.

Benefits of a style guide

The style guide will help you develop a good practice approach to writing effectively for online.

As a content author, it will ensure your web pages look professional, help you through the dos and don'ts, and ensure your contribution to the website is accessible to all.

If there is anything you feel is missing from the style guide or if you have a question please contact us.


Arguments about points of style are decided on the principle: "what does the user say".

We don't make decisions on a whim. We find out what users want and the vocabulary they're using, and then we test it.

The digital communications team, working closely with the wider communications team and legal services, have final approval on all of our website content and design.