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Search Help


How our search engine works

Our search engine searches several databases to match your search query. A higher ranking is given to sites in the Cambridge Directory, as this is a handpicked collection of the most popular and important Cambridge Web sites. If no matches are found from the directory listings, our search engine will return results from a larger database which includes thousands of Web pages not listed in our directory. These Web pages are still relevant to Cambridge.

Choosing a search centre

You can manually choose which search centre or database to search either by selecting it from the dropdown menu above, or by choosing from the Search Centre page as linked below. Currently it is possible to search for Cambridge websites, local shop listings, visitor reviews or a general Web search. In the future we plan to offer specific searches for every major UK city.

Click here to choose a search centre.

Searching technique

No results returned? Are you sure the words you are entering are spelled correctly? Incorrect spelling is one of the most common causes of people not being able to find what they are looking for.

Too many or too few results? If you are presented with too many results, try adding more keywords to narrow down the search. If you are presented with too few results, try removing keywords - search results are only displayed if they contain all the words you have specified. You can also omit pages by specifying words that must not appear in the results - see below.

Customising your search

1. You can search for an exact phrase. Simply place your search phrase in double quotation marks. So if you want to search for sites about Cambridge University, and don't want to be bothered with sites that contain information about universities in general, or general Cambridge information, type in "Cambridge University".

2. All searches are case insensitive and accent insensitive Searching for "Cup" will match the lowercase "cup" and uppercase "CUP", so you may get results about drinking vessels when you are doing a lazy search for Cambridge University Press.

3. Including or excluding words: To ensure that a specific word is always included in your search topic, place the plus (+) symbol before the key word in the search box. To make sure that a specific word is always excluded from your search topic, place a minus (-) sign before the keyword in the search box.

Example: To find information on Cambridge jobs, but excluding the large number of computing opportunities, try something like:

cambridge +jobs -computing