Below is a summary of functions for which cookies are employed.
We use Google Analytics to track where website visitors are coming from; which pages they view when they get here; and for viewing ecommerce behaviours like when people add items to the basket and if they abandon the basket without checking out. Unobtrusive use of analytics gathers far less data than simply talking to our customers (as we do in the shop) would. In any case, the cookies set by Google Analytics simply distinguish between users, without using personally identifiable information.
A further Google cookie is supplied by use of an embedded Google map on the Contact page; also by Typeform to manage file uploading and to present the correct version of the contact form.
Our website uses Cloudflare which, among other things, helps us with security. Cloudflare sets a cookie (again without requiring or storing any personal information) to manage trusted web traffic, so that our website doesn’t get attacked by people with malicious intent. It’s for your security as much as ours.
This is the big one. Without cookies we can’t show you your recently viewed items; or add things to the basket; or present you with the right basket at checkout; or check you out at all. You see now that the EU’s insistence on website owners posting rambling mea culpas about cookies doesn’t help anyone, either by design or in effect. Giving you the simulacrum of choice about cookies is just that – it’s really a choice about whether or not to use this website (indeed the vast majority of websites), because we can’t offer a cookie-free alternative.
You can block or disable cookies via your browser settings, but this would disable many of our website’s functions for you. Some, like the Cloudflare cookie, can’t be blocked or disabled at all. If you wish, you can clear cached cookies via your browser settings when you’ve finished your visit.