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Application: whitehall

Publishes government content on GOV.UK

AWS, on the whitehall_backend machine class
Continuously deployed?
Rake tasks
Integration, Staging or ⚠️ Production ⚠️

Relevant manual pages

Imported documents

Example pages published by whitehall


whitehall is a Ruby on Rails content management application for content published by government departments and agencies.

Running the Application

Startup using govuk-docker.

There are two different views within this App, a Publishing view and a Site view. Once running, whitehall does not have an index, some suggested starting pages are below:

Publishing view:

Site view:

Some pages will need data locally to display, whitehall uses mySQL. You’ll need to gain relevant permissions to access data from AWS


  • Govspeak A variation of Markdown used throughout whitehall as the general publishing format

Technical documentation

whitehall is a Ruby on Rails app built on a MySQL database. It is deployed in two modes: ‘admin’ for publishers to create and manage content and ‘frontend’ for rendering some content under and whitehall also sends most content to the publishing-api and rummager.


Local development dependencies

This application uses Ruby dependencies installed via Bundler and npm dependencies installed via Yarn.

These can be installed with:

bundle install
yarn install

Dependent GOV.UK apps

Other documentation

Generating technical documentation

We use YARD for the technical documentation. You can generate a local copy with:

yard server --reload

You can also read the docs on


MIT License