Featured: How to use the forums

Not that familiar with using forums? No problem - here's a guide on how to use our community forums.

If anything is missing, or you need any further detail, please let me know and I'll update this post accordingly.


What is ‘Our community’ in the website navigation?

This is the hub of our community. Here you will find a forum for General Discussions, as well as forums dedicated to some of our targeted programmes: Landscape Partnerships, Parks for People, Skills for the FutureYoung Roots, Catalyst and Collecting Cultures. Only HLF administrators can set up new forums, but any user who is registered and logged in can start a discussion within a forum.

Here are some guidelines to using the forum features:

Joining and contributing to discussions

This is simple! Once you have logged in (using the 'Log in / Register' link at the top of this page, or at the bottom of a discussion you want to respond to), you can add your comments by simply clicking in and then typing your response in the ‘Add new comment’ box at the end of the discussion. Once you are happy with your response, scroll down and click the ‘Submit’ button. You'll spot that there are some additional options for adding videos, attachments or images to your post before you get to the 'Submit' button - these are explained in further detail below. You can also add some formatting to your post which, again, is explained in further detail below.

Starting a conversation/discussion

If you want to start a discussion in a forum, you can do this by clicking the ‘Start new discussion’ button at the top of the forum page that you want to start your discussion in. When you are happy with your post, click the 'Save' button to publish it. Don’t forget, you must be logged in to start a new discussion. It's also worth noting that there is a 75 character limit on discussion titles (including spaces and punctuation). Don't forget - you must be logged in to do this!

Formatting text 

There are some options available for formatting text and adding extra content when starting or contributing to a discussion within the community. These are as follows:

Bold / italic / underline / bullet points

These icons, as seen at the top of the 'Add new comment' box work exactly the same as they do in a Word document or in your email. Simply highlight the text you wish to format and click on the relevant icon in the text editor at the top of the comment box to apply the formatting.

You can also apply heading styling to your copy if you wish to. To do this, highlight the words you wish to apply a heading style to, then click the dropdown menu in the text editor with the word 'Normal' in it and select your heading style to apply the formatting.

Hyperlinking text

To hyperlink a word or words within your post for users to click on to read more, highlight the word or words you wish to link and then click the 'Link' button in the text editor (it looks a little like a paperclip on its side). This will open up a pop up window. Type or paste your chosen URL into the URL field. It’s advisable that you also click on the ‘Target’ tab and select the ‘New Window (_blank)' option - this means that if someone clicks on your link, it will open in a new browser window or tab, therefore not taking them away from the site. 

If you want to remove a hyperlink within your post, click on it then click the 'Unlink' button in the text editor (this is the icon that looks a little like a paperclip on its side with a cross next to it).


There is a spellcheck option for all posts within the community. This can be accessed by clicking the ‘ABC’ button in the text editor at the top of the box you are typing your post into. It contains two options:

  1. 'Enable SCAYT': this means ‘scan as you type’. Select this option and any incorrect spellings will be highlighted with a red underline as you type. Right click on these to see options for correcting your spelling.
  2. 'Check Spelling': this runs a similar spell checker to Microsoft Word, and will check everything you have typed all in one go.


If you wish to respond to a specific post in a discussion, it can be useful to use the 'Quote' feature. Simply click the ‘Quote’ option on the post in the discussion thread that you wish to quote from and it will appear in your reply box. Type your response or comment beneath this and when you submit your post, the quote will be shown in italics copy within a quotation box.

Adding video

You can add video to your post for people to watch. Simply scroll below the 'Add new comment' box to the 'Videos' box and paste in the URL of the video you wish to share (note: the community only supports videos already hosted on YouTube and Vimeo). If you wish to add more than one video, click the 'Add another item' button and follow the same instructions.

Uploading a document

Underneath the 'Videos' box you'll find one called 'Attachment' - this is where you can upload documents for other users to download. To share a document with other community members, click on the 'Browse' button and find the document you want to upload in the pop up window, then click 'open' to close the window. Click the 'Upload' button to attach your document and it will appear above the 'Add new file' text. If you have selected the wrong document, you can click the 'Remove' button to delete it.

Please note that we currently support pdf, txt, doc, docx, xls, xlsx, ppt and pptx files up to 20MB only (try to keep file sizes to a minimum, ideally below 5MB). Please ensure that you have the correct permissions to upload your file, and that it does not contain any sensitive or private content before you upload it, as it will become accessible to anyone logged in to the HLF website to download once you have submitted your post.

Adding an image

Just like videos, you can also add images to your post to share with the community. Scroll to the 'Images' box, click on the 'Browse' button and find the image you want to upload in the pop up window, then click 'open' to close the window. Click the 'Upload' button to attach your image and it will appear. Add in the 'Alternate text' and 'Title', both of which should be a short description of what your image is. 

If you select the wrong image you can click the 'Remove' button to delete it.

To add more images, follow these steps below.

Please note that we currently support png, gif, jpg and jpeg image files only which must be below 4mb in size, and a maximum of 1,000 x 1,000 pixels.

Editing your post after you have published it

You can go back and edit any of your posts once they have been published. Simply find the post you wish to edit and select the ‘Edit’ option from the links at the bottom. Make the changes you want and then click the ‘Submit’ button. Your original post will be overwritten with the changes made.

Liking content

If you wish to show appreciation for a post, there is a ‘like’ option available on all posts, much like Facebook and other social media sites. Simply click the 'thumbs up' icon beneath the post you wish to like!

Flagging and reporting content

If you feel that content is inappropriate or goes against our community guidelines you can flag it by clicking on the ‘Report’ link at the bottom of the post. You will then be asked to provide a reason and short description as to why you are reporting the content - don't forget to click the 'Report' button when you're done. Once a piece of content has been reported an administrator will be notified and will review the content as soon as possible. More information on reporting content can be found in our community guidelines.


If you need any more help with using the community features, check out the other posts in this section. If you still can't find what you need, please let me know.


Submitted by ian@iannsmith.co.uk (not verified) on Thu, 10/15/2015 - 12:25


Do you have any further news about the LPOW VAT scheme which is threatenen to close next March.

Ian Smith

Submitted by Amy Freeborn (not verified) on Thu, 10/15/2015 - 12:27


Hi Ian - If you could please start a new thread in our General discussions forum to ask this question, I will find the right person to respond to you there: https://www.hlf.org.uk/community/general-discussions