As the style guide has a lot of detail that is not always applicable from day to day, below are a few key features to follow when adding text on the website.

Job titles

If used before/after a name it is upper case, e.g.: Tammy McGloughlin is Publications Manager at the Centre.

If used as general titles, it is lower case, e.g.:  There is only one publications manager at the Centre at the moment.

Use of quotations

Single quotation marks should be used with all quotations.

Double quotation marks should be used where there is a quotation within a quotation.


Use upper and lower case as follows:

  • Court of Appeal
  • Crown Court
  • High Court
  • Supreme Court
  • District Court
  • Family Court
  • Magistrates’ Court
  • Youth Court

Institutions, departments and units

Use upper and lower case as follows:

  • the cabinet
  • government (unless ‘the British Government’ as an exception)
  • parliament
  • coalition government
  • Home Office
  • House of Commons
  • the Treasury
  • Crown Prosecution Service
  • Police Service
  • Prison Service
  • Probation Service/National Probation Service/Probation Trust

Acts, Bills and Papers

Where an Act or Bill is quoted in full, use upper case initial letters, italics and follow with the date:

  • Crime and Disorder Act 1998
  • Criminal Justice Act 2003
  • Green Paper and White Paper take upper case initial letters.

Titles of White and Green Papers use the above format. For example:

The White Paper, Supporting Magistrates’ Courts to Provide Justice


Abbreviations should be spelt out when they first appear, followed by the abbreviation/initial letters in brackets. The abbreviation may then be used throughout the remainder of the text. For example:

  • The National Audit Office (NAO). Use in full on first mention, then use NAO.
  • At the beginning of a sentence do not use the abbreviation.

In long and complex reports, it may be necessary to repeat the name in full the first time it appears in each section or chapter.

Dates and years

  • Dates: use the format: 9 October 2006; October 2006; Monday, 9 October 2006.
  • Centuries: spell out centuries in full: in the sixteenth century; in the twenty-first century.
  • Decades: use either ‘the 1990s’ or ‘the nineties’. Avoid ‘the 90s’.


Use words for one to ten, and numerals for 11 onwards.


  • Use numerals in figures and tables.
  • At the start of a sentence all numbers should be spelled out in words – for example, Eleven people came for an interview, Sixty-five.
  • Avoid mixing words and numerals.


  • Use commas in thousands – for example, 20,000, 15,000.
  • Do not use apostrophes in decades – for example, the 1960s not the 1960’s.
  • Use numerals for millions and billions – for example, £10 billion.
  • Use per cent rather than percent or %.

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