Since BFI Player development was bought in house in September 2016, we have been working to make the site as accessible as possible.  

In 2018, we worked with the Digital Accessibility Centre (DAC) to review our work and improve on it.

We develop according to level AA of the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines. However, our accessibility can be impacted by some of the tools that we use and some of our content is limited by its age and/or source.   

This page outlines the most accessible ways to use BFI Player as well as areas of our site where some users with additional needs may experience issues.

Please send feedback about the accessibility of BFI Player to [email protected].

Using BFI Player

To maximise the accessibility improvements we can deliver, we have focused on desktop performance, and with the following browser and tools:

  • Mac: The latest version of Chrome, using Voiceover if you use a screen reader;    

  • PC: The latest version of Chrome, using NVDA if you use a screen reader.

However, other browsers, tools and devices are used for basic accessibility testing and improvements - but the accessibility of some features may be more limited if you use those.

Accessible content on BFI Player

A selection of our content is available with audio description (AD), but only on PC and mac.

Some of our films are also available with subtitles, known as closed captions (CC).

The easiest way to find films with AD or CC is via search.

You can do this by:

  • Finding the search field via our navigation at the top of our pages - it should be one of your first few clicks on the page;

  • Then, enter a search term;

  • The search page will show, with film links based on your search term: you can navigate between results on Rental, Subscription and Free tabs;

  • If any films based on your search term have AD or CC, you will then be able to navigate to the Accessibility filter on each tab;

  • The Accessibility filter will have checkbox options for either/or: audio described and closed captions, with the number of films available and you can navigate to the film links in the search results;

  • To access all films with AD or CC, you can clear the top search box and the Accessibility filter will show automatically, with the number of films available and you can navigate to the film links in the search results.

Clickable labels listing either/or CC and AD can also be found on each film page, towards the top, as one of your first few clicks after the search field.

These labels link to all films with the same accessibility feature (CC or AD) within the same section - that is, Rentals, Subscription or Free.

BFI Player accessibility testing

Through DAC’s services, BFI Player has been tested on desktop and mobile, by users with sight, mobility, hearing and learning disabilities.

DAC testers used the latest versions of the most popular browsers and accessibility tools where needed, including:   

  • JAWS screen reader

  • NVDA screen reader

  • Dragon voice activation software

  • ZoomText magnification

  • Keyboard only navigation

  • Voiceover (on iOS, with the use of rotor menus)

At the BFI, while we focus on Chrome for both mac and PC accessibility improvements, using Voiceover and NVDA screen readers, we test at a basic level on the following:  

  • Browser versions: Latest versions of Firefox, IE, Edge, Chrome and Safari (on iPhone and iPad);

  • Screen readers: NVDA (PC), Voiceover and Chromevox (Mac) and Voiceover (on iPhone and iPad);    

  • Keyboard navigation: On the following browsers: Firefox, IE, Edge and Chrome.

Accessibility of features on BFI Player

This section summarises accessibility improvements we have made, are in progress or need to make - and we welcome your feedback:

Visual design:

  • We have made it easier to distinguish between site elements by increasing the size and weight of our fonts and increasing the contrast of our brand colours.


  • We have removed film title names from images where there is no further description about the image’s content.

  • We have removed dynamically changing multiple images, to avoid disturbance; now they change only on a new page load.


  • We have made link text larger and also clearer, adding and/or clarifying the type of content linked to and whether is it shown in a pop-up or a new page.

  • Keyboard-only navigation improvements have been introduced for the first time with DAC’s feedback, which has also helped improve the user experience for people with visual disabilities;

  • It is now easier to navigate between video accessibility options;

  • Dropdown navigation, used in our Help and similar sections, has been enabled;

  • We have removed scrolling content that hides on-page text;

  • Silent double clicks are no longer audible;

  • The order of headings that refer to different page sections have been made more logical, in line with heading numbers.

  • However, we have not yet improved all changes required to The Cut section, which will require a significant rebuild of the content;

  • It is also difficult to navigate the Britain on Film map, which relies on third party development and tools. We recommend that you use our search field and results to find films, as described above.

Registration, payment and account sections:

  • We do have improvements to make on account and payment sections, but we have completed some work on improving:

    • The clarity and visibility of text used for field titles, explanations and error messages;

    • The ease of navigating between fields and text, including on pop-up error and descriptive messages, and also checkboxes;

    • The ease of navigating between user account tabs, text, buttons and tables.

    • The impact of non-visual elements - we have hidden security elements from screen readers.