Avoid Latin abbreviations, such as cf. or ie. if possible. If you must use them, add a full stop after them. Even internally, terms such as ceteris paribus, inter alia, ex officio and pro bono are best left to formal documents.


Legal terms such as sub judice should remain as they are – but if you use them, check that you know what they mean.


legislation and governing bodies

When referring to legislation and governing bodies, follow the organisation’s style, ie. Health & Safety Executive (HSE).


Also bear in mind that external audiences may not know what the HSE is, therefore, when writing for an external audience use a phrase such as ‘changes to health and safety regulations’ instead of ‘HSE changes’, to explain your point.


life saver/life saving

These terms always appear as two words, and are never hyphenated.



Bullet points or numbered lists can make lists easier to follow. There are two types of list:

  • In some lists, such as this one, every bullet point contains one or more complete sentences
  • Each bullet point in the list starts with a capital letter and the last bullet point ends with a full stop.

In the other type of list, each bullet point forms part of one overall sentence that begins with the text preceding the list – as in the example immediately below.


When writing about St John Ambulance you must use:

  1. the appropriate key messages
  2. the style guide
  3. good grammar.

Note that these points do not start with capital letters.

As with all lists, the last bullet point or number ends with a full stop. A numbered list also takes a full stop at the end of the last line only.


Only use the standard black circular bullet point icon to precede each point in your list. If you need to write a bullet point list within a bullet point list, each sub list should also end in a full stop. Slightly smaller bullet point icons should be used. Do not use the minus/hyphen (-), en dash (–) or em dash (—) symbols.



is correct. Not ‘Ltd.’ or ‘LTD’.


Contact and copyright info