Accelerate Your Web Build with the Acquia UK Government Accelerator

Acquia's UK Government Accelerator combines the power of low-code developer tools and adhering to the GDS framework to build and launch sites faster.

We recently launched our new UK Government Accelerator, a package of Acquia products specifically designed and priced for UK government websites and users of the GOV.UK Design System by the UK Government Digital Service (GDS). The GOV.UK Design System went into beta in 2018 as a community-driven effort to bring government design patterns, styles and components together in one place. With governments and public institutions often having to work with limited budgets and resources, anything that helps them do more with less means they can spend more time serving their constituents. Design systems allow government institutions to build and iterate on the work of others, so they can create faster and ensure that their websites are accessible and user-friendly.    

At Acquia, we share the vision of the GDS to streamline digital work and make it easier for those in the public sector to design and build new sites quickly. With our UK Government Accelerator, the goal was to offer an out-of-the-box solution that makes it easier, faster and cheaper for users of the GOV.UK Design System to design, build and manage Drupal websites while ensuring that compliance and governance was baked in. 

What's included with the UK Government Accelerator?

Acquia’s UK Government Accelerator is built on Drupal, the world’s finest open source enterprise CMS, with Acquia’s leading developer tools, all hosted on Acquia Cloud Platform.
The UK Government Accelerator also offers you:

  • A Sector Design Kit (PSDK) that gets you started fast, whilst adhering to the GDS framework.
  • A functional design specification to make it easy to implement
  • One license for Acquia Site Studio, our low-code site builder with intuitive page building and editing
  • Full access to our training and support resources to make sure you get the most out of the accelerator

Watch the video to find out more:

Watch Acquia GOV.UK Design System on YouTube.


What’s included in the design kit?

​​​​​​​  Implementation guidance and example markup for every component, as listed in the GOV.UK Design System

Pre-built components, helper templates and styles that comply 100% with the UK Government Design System. These are supplied as a file that can quickly be uploaded and used to start your build.

We also provide full documentation on how to use the Site Studio design kit, including:

  • Implementation guidance and example markup for every component, as listed in the GOV.UK Design System
  • Design and configuration options for our Extended Design System (EDS) components to accelerate your build
  • Guidance on a library of common “Helper” patterns to speed up your build

Take a look at the documentation to see exactly what's included and the detailed implementation help that's provided. 

gds design specification


Faster Site Creation with Extensible and Customizable Features

Through re-usable components and low-code developer tools, the Accelerator simplifies and speeds up any project. Typically, we see a 5-10x increase in production speed for the content pages of your website, plus much less initial setup. But the benefits don’t stop there! By freeing up valuable developer resources, they can focus on higher value tasks such as building applications and services for your customers.

The best way to show you is to... well... show you. This video is only using components, helpers and styles that are included in the design kit and have been used without modification.

We have built only one page and then started to input the content, but as you can see, it took just a couple of minutes to create a complex layout that adheres to the GDS framework. 

Watch UK Government Accelerator on YouTube.

And if you need to add an additional feature that isn’t included in the kit? Not a problem. Both Site Studio and the Public Sector Design Kit are designed to be fully extensible. You can add new components, create new layouts, add new custom styles and bring in external applications in just a few clicks, all without any need for coding. 

Moreover, using a standard design kits doesn’t mean your sites all need to look the same. Often these master design components serve as a foundation, meaning your web team won’t be building anything from scratch, but individual organizations have the freedom to customize the look and feel of their sites. 

 It’s easy to create sites that follow your brand and your layouts, usually just using the settings already built in to our components and helpers. Settings such as colours and fonts can be added with just a few clicks and you can even update the editing experience for your content team, should you need to.

We recently ran a webinar about not only how to use the design kit, but also how it can easily be adapted to deliver very different looking website experiences while still adhering to the GDS guidelines. Check out the full webinar recording on Acquia UK Government Accelerator to find out more. 

Sounds great. How can I get access? 

If you already work with Acquia, then please speak with your account manager. If you’re new to Acquia, then you can request access on our UK Government Accelerator webpage.
All the products listed in the accelerator are available on the G-Cloud framework, should you need to procure services in that way.

What if we don’t use the Gov.UK Design System?Do you have plans for other markets or verticals?

Yes we do, although we don’t have a specific timeline yet for when those might be available. If you want to register a specific use case that your business might be interested in, then either speak with your Acquia account manager or email [email protected]

Featured Resources

View More Resources