Personal safety

Sheffield is reported to be the safest large city in the UK, but like any big city, it is not crime-free. It is sensible to take precautions to protect yourself and your belongings.


Stay safe principles

The personal safety of staff and students at the University of Sheffield is paramount, and with this in mind we wanted to share with you the Government's advice on what to do in the unlikely event of a safety threat such as firearms or terrorist activity on campus.

Whilst there are no specific threats to the University of Sheffield, the UK’s national threat level is currently set at 'substantial' (March 2023) and we want to ensure that everyone is informed about how to stay safe and secure on campus and in your student residence.

The Government's advice in such incidents is to ensure you follow the Stay Safe principles: Run, Hide, Tell.

Your personal safety

  • Stay alert - awareness is your best defence.

  • Never leave your drinks unattended, even soft drinks get spiked

  • Drink water in between alcoholic drinks.

  • You don’t have to be drunk to have a good night, set limits and stick to them. Alcohol can change your behaviour and make you do things that you wouldn’t normally do.

  • At night, avoid taking risky shortcuts through back alleys, parks or waste grounds. Where possible, stick to pavements and well-lit areas.

  • Be confident - even if you don't feel it.

  • Trust your instincts - if you think something is wrong, then act on it.

  • Always pre-book a licensed taxi for your journey home.

  • Stay with your friends and never walk home alone.

  • Walk facing traffic so you can see what's heading towards you and so a car can’t pull up behind you unnoticed.

  • If you regularly walk home or go out jogging, try to vary your routes (without taking risky shortcuts).

  • Wearing earphones is common practice, but please be aware that they may appear attractive to potential attackers and reduce your alertness to your surroundings.

  • If you are carrying a bag make sure the clasp is facing inwards, all zips are closed correctly and all pockets closed. If your bag is snatched let it go, your safety is more important than your property.

  • If you have expensive items such as jewellery, mobile phones or music listening devices, keep them out of sight.

  • If you are threatened by a person, scream, shout and set off a personal attack alarm to startle the attacker giving you time to escape. Try to make a note of details such as registration plates, clothing, and height, then report the incident to the Security Team and Police.