In news copy, refer to people by their full name e.g. Benaba Youma. Thereafter by their first name (Benaba).

If referring to politicians (or others when appropriate) use a title on second mention e.g. Mr/Mrs/Ms.

Do not use someone’s surname on its own.

Yes: Mr Sunak has refused to ask for international assistance.
No: Sunak has refused…

For the people we support, use their first name only, or their pseudonym if they have been given one as per ResourceSpace.

There should be no spaces or full stops between initials.


Capital N when referring to Jesus’ birth. So: Luke’s version of the Nativity, the Nativity story, a Nativity play.

no one

Two words, no hyphen.


Hyphen but no capitals, e.g. the north-east coast…, three miles north-east of the city.

north/North, northern/Northern etc

Names of areas are capitalised if they are part of the title of a recognised geographical area or political division (e.g. North Dakota, Northern Ireland)

They are not capitalised if they are descriptions in general terms (e.g. northern India, north London).

north/North, the

Lower case for the northern part of a country. So: schools in the north of England...


Write one to ten in words and 11+ in numerals. So: She has three children…, There were 40 students in the class. This applies to headlines too.

Exception: when writing e.g. 1 in 40, write both numbers as numerals.

1,000 and 2,000 have a comma.

2,500,000 is more easily expressed as 2.5 million or 2.5m. Likewise 2,500,000,000 is better written as 2.5 billion or 2.5bn. See million.

Fractions are best written in words, e.g. three-quarters of the world, a quarter of the church.

If you must use decimals, give them to one decimal place, e.g. £14.8 million. Within the same document, always use the same number of decimal places.

Exception: a piece of collateral where it is felt that a giving handle or stat is more clearly communicated using numerals.