HTTP Error 500


I've just changed themes and started rebuilding my site, and then realised that I needed to copy a few codes in my old theme header. & footer. files into my new child theme.

However, as soon as I activated my old theme to access the header codes, my site crashed and came up with the following error..

The **** page isn’t working
**** is currently unable to handle this request.

I'm nearly 100% sure that this is an issue with my old theme as this has happened before and thats one of the reasons I changed themes.

I have just requested FTP access from my server host, but only know VERY basic FTP. Once I'm in the FTP client, what do I do to fix this?!

Thank you so much in advance!


  • Tyler Postle
    • CGO

    Hey Mark,

    So you just want to deactivate the old theme so you can reactivate the new theme?

    When you login into your FTP, go to:


    and re-name the folder of the old theme that you have active right now. This will force your site to swap to the default 2016 theme, then you should have access again assuming the issue was indeed your old theme and you can re-activate your new one :slight_smile:

    What header codes do you need? If they are in your header template for your old theme then you should be able to just grab them from the header.php template file itself.

    Hope this helps! If you still have further questions on this just let us know.


  • Mark
    • Flash Drive

    Hi Tyler,

    Thanks so much for your reply. That all sounds easy enough! I'll get that done tomorrow when (if) my sever admin ever replies!

    I actually deleted the 2014, 15 & 16 themes from my WP as I thought they were pointless now (guess I was wrong), will WP automatically activate the other theme I have active, or does it only do this with WP default themes?

    It's only the various meta tags for social media & analytics verification, etc. More hassle then it's worth now, I should have just generated new tags!

    Thank you, again!


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