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downloading documents from our website

Some of the information on our website is contained in a format that can be downloaded. This means that you don't look at the information on our web page - instead you download a copy which you can save to your computer and read offline (when you're not connected to the Internet). The download files on our website are in PDF format - PDF stands for Portable Document Format.

opening pdf files

All you need is the Adobe Acrobat Reader software on your computer to open and save these files. Most computers these days come with the Adobe Reader already installed, but if you haven't got the software on your computer - or you want to get the very latest version of it - visit the Adobe website, where you can download the software you need free.

Get Adobe Reader

Whenever we publish PDF files for you to download, we always put the file size in brackets alongside the title of the document. This gives you an idea of how big the file is.

flash: what is it?

Flash is an enhancement which you download (install) free from Adobe. Once Flash is installed on your computer, you are then able to use applications which have extras like moving graphics, sound or animation. It is a much more interactive way of giving information.

how to download flash

You can download Flash from the Adobe website, or click on the icon below. This will mean you have the latest version.

Get Adobe Flash Player

printing & saving pdf files

Once you have opened a PDF you can either print a paper copy, or you can read it on-screen. Some of the PDFs we provide contain detailed information. The Adobe Reader lets you zoom in and out of the PDF so you can make text and images bigger and easier to understand. The zoom tool is a small magnifying glass with a cross symbol in it (to zoom in) or a minus symbol (to zoom out). It looks like this:

image of the zoom icon in adobe reader

If you want to save a copy of a PDF to your computer, click on the 'Save a copy' button, then choose somewhere to save it to. You will then be able to read the information without having to stay connected to the Internet. The button looks like this:

image of the 'save a copy' button in adobe reader

filling in pdf forms

There two ways you can fill in PDF application form.  You can either print the form and fill it in by hand or, in some instances, you can type in your details in Adobe Reader before printing the form and returning it by post.

You can only save a blank copy of a PDF application form. If you require a copy of a form you have completed in Adobe Reader you should print a copy before you close the PDF file.