Cookie Policy

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Pastmap Cookie Policy

Find out what cookies are and how they are used on the Pastmap website.

Like many websites, (the Service) uses small files called cookies to help provide the best possible online experience for you. 

Below, we explain what cookies are, what they do, how we use them, and how you can view or change your cookie preferences.

Who are we

The Pastmap website is managed by Historic Environment Scotland, the lead public body established to investigate, care for and promote Scotland’s historic environment. We’re a non-departmental public body (NDPB) with charitable status. 

We are committed to protecting your personal data and your privacy. Find out more about how we handle personal data in our privacy notice.

What are cookies? 

Cookies are small pieces of text sent by your web browser on a website you visit. A cookie file is stored in your web browser and allows the Service or a third-party to recognise you.

Cookies can be either "persistent" or "session" based.

  • Persistent cookies continue to exist after you finish your website visit. They are eventually deleted, often after 6 months or longer. They are used to help the Service recognise when you return to the site; these cookies will remember key information about you, such as your site preferences.

  • Session cookies are deleted automatically soon after you finish your website visit, usually within 30 minutes. They are used to help the Service remember the status of your current visit, for example, a session ID might be stored to ensure you remain logged in.

You can remove cookies from your device at any time, and your device will automatically delete expired cookies.

First-party cookies entail a small text file that is stored on your computer when you visit a specific domain (website) and which cannot be shared with others. These cookies are set directly by the Service and only the Service can read them.

Cookies that do not originate from the Service are called ‘Third Party’ cookies.

Such cookies are set by other digital services and are accessible by those services only. For example, if a webpage contains an embedded YouTube video, YouTube will set its own cookies to enable the video to work properly.

Some cookies are set by services for advertising purposes. For example, an advertising platform may set a cookie that recognises the online journey a user has taken across different websites. The advertising partner may set or read the cookies on other websites/services and link the users’ activity on this Service. Third-party cookies are not set by the Service itself.

How we use cookies

We categorise cookies based on how they are used; this section will help you make broad choices about which cookies you set.

Essential cookies

These cookies let you use all the different yet essential parts of the Service. Without them, the Service cannot be provided. Therefore, they are sometimes called “strictly necessary” cookies.

For example, we use essential cookies to:

  • remember your preferences (for example, whether you have given your consent for cookies to be set)

  • remember security settings that affect access to certain content, for example, whether you are logged in, or for enabling consistent access to our web servers.

  • enable certain essential services you need, such as a shopping cart

Performance cookies

These cookies help us ensure the website is working properly and they highlight when we need to fix issues or improve experiences.

While we do not collect data directly about each user’s age, gender, or interests, we use Google Signals to receive anonymised data that groups and summarises information about the users who visit our Services. This includes the categorisation of users’ ages, genders, and interests, which provides more context to our performance data.

Any performance cookies we use only collects anonymised data to protect your identity, so we cannot identify any individuals from this data. We do not collect any data on sex, political or religious beliefs, nationality, or postcodes through cookies.

You can manage what data Google stores about you, and whether it can collect or share that data at

The cookies we set

Essential cookies

Drupal Privacy Policy

Name Data stored Purpose Expires
SESS649c8a41f5f53ce2c2b5ea46f2ef96f4 A session ID Used for store session ID 23 days
has_js Boolean Used to store whether your browser allows JavaScript to run End of session
Name Data stored Purpose Expires
.CookiePreferences A string for each preference set Used to store information about a visitor's cookie preference settings After 1 year

Performance cookies

Google Analytics is an example of a first party cookie used for performance. Other organisations can’t access your data or view cookies used by our website, and we do not sell your data to any third parties. We also do not allow Google to share our analytics data.

Google’s privacy policy

Name Data stored Purpose Expires
_ga Browser ID Collects information about how you use this website After 2 years
_gid User ID Used to distinguish users 23 hours
__utma User ID Used to store time of visit. After 2 years
__utmb A timestamp Used to store time of visit. 29 minutes
__utmc A timestamp Used to store time of visit. End of session
__utmt None Used to store number of service requests 9 minutes
__utmz Data pertaining to use of Google's search engine if you used it to find this website Used to store used keywords and search engine inputs. 182 days
_gat_UA-40578997 A numeric value Used to throttle request rate 30 seconds

As we use Google Signals, there are some related third-party cookies that may be set, depending on if you have consented to be tracked by Google.

On the Pastmap, we only use Performance cookies after you have given your consent.

You can do this by selecting your preferences in the cookie banner or below. If you don’t give your permission, we will only collect basic, essential cookies.

You can also control your cookies in your web browser settings. To find out more about cookies, including how to manage and delete them within your browser, please use the following links:

To quickly manage third party cookies generated by advertisers, visit Your Online Choices.

We aren’t responsible for the information or the setting of cookies on these external websites.