Security Services

Security Services

Dedicated to providing a welcoming, safe and secure campus

Leeds is a great place to live and study. It’s important to be prepared and take simple steps to stay safe and to know what to do if you’re a victim of crime. The University’s Security Service operates 24 hours a day, every day of the year. We offer crime prevention advice, patrol the campus, investigate crimes and respond to alarms and emergencies.

Security office175 Woodhouse Lane
Non-emergencies(0113) 343 5494/5
Emergencies only(0113) 343 2222
WhatsApp video call07876 866747
First aid processFirst Aid & Ambulance info


Simple steps to keep yourself and your possessions safe.

SafeZone is an app that everyone on campus can use to ask for help.


Find out how you can reclaim lost property from the Security office.


Contact information for staff within Security Services.

Police Higher Education Liaison Officer

The University of Leeds works with West Yorkshire Police to provide a Police Higher Education Liaison Officer (PHELO) offering help, advice and support to students and staff on campus.

PC Laura Beaton works with the University’s Security Service on campus. You can contact her at:

07719417879 (8am-4pm, Mon–Fri)

Our services

We operate by the Security Service Level Agreement and offer a range of security services:

  • Uniformed security patrols and static guarding both with and without the use of dogs
  • A 24 hour monitoring service for all networked closed circuit television cameras and University alarm systems
  • Initial response to alarms and emergency situations
  • Investigating, recording and analysing crimes and incidents
  • Crime prevention advice
  • Event/venue security for University functions including access control and guarding
  • Briefings to staff and students on personal and property security
  • Lost/found property system
  • Management information on crime figures and trends as they affect the University
  • Security services on a ‘charged’ basis for non academic activity on University property
  • Other specialist support as necessary or required
  • Hear more about recent improvements by Security Services

Reporting a crime

If you witness a crime, or are a victim of a crime, always report it to the police and to the University Security Service.

Security Services and the police work together to keep Leeds students as safe and secure as possible. It should be understood that, although a security officer will take a report of crime from an aggrieved person, it is important that the person also reports the matter to the police. This is necessary for insurance purposes.

For all non-emergency situations call the police on 101
You should also telephone the University Security Service on 0113 343 5494
Emergency only
For emergency situations call the police on 999
You should also telephone the University Security Service on 0113 343 2222

Examples of descriptions that can help identify criminals

The most important pieces of information you can give the Police or Security, if you see someone acting suspiciously or committing a crime are:

DESCRIPTION of the offender.  LOCATION of the offender. DIRECTION the offender is travelling in.


  • Age and height (approximately)
  • Male/female
  • Hair: colour, length, style, etc
  • Build: tall, thin, stocky
  • Clothing
  • Other distinguishing features: scar, tattoo, missing fingers, etc


  • Make
  • Registration
  • Colour
  • Description of driver
  • Number of occupants
  • Type: saloon, estate, van, lorry, including any displayed names

Crime prevention

Leeds is a great place to live and study, but it’s important to take simple steps to keep yourself and your possessions safe.

  • Make sure you keep your front door closed and locked even if you’re in. When you leave, close all of your doors and windows
  • Use a timer device so your lights will still come on when you’re away for any period of time
  • Make sure you have high quality locks on your doors. Ask your landlord/letting agent if they meet the latest standards – TS007 (3 star rating) or SS312 (Sold Secure Diamond Standard)
  • Use your burglar alarm even if you’re just going out for a short period of time
  • Keep all of your valuables stored out of sight and away from windows
  • When you’re out and about keep your valuables out of sight. Have your phone in your pocket or bag, and don’t wear headphones as these can be valuable and make you less aware of what’s going on around you
  • When you’re in a bar or a café, consider looping your bag strap under your chair leg
  • Never leave your valuables unattended, even if you are studying in libraries or study areas
  • Be aware of someone trying to distract you (for instance by trying to hand you a leaflet) in order to make theft easier
  • Download tracking software to your laptop and phone –
  • Be aware of how to stay safe online. If it looks too good to be true, it’s probably a scam – don’t buy it or engage with it
  • Make sure you check the details of who you’re talking to. If they claim to be an official representative of an organisation, ask for their name and department. You can then check online to confirm their identity
  • If in doubt ask for advice from Security, your personal tutor, your friends or your family.
  • Never send money to a stranger, no matter what they have said
  • For more information on online security, make sure you complete the online IT induction
  • Make sure to secure your bike with a D lock with a ‘sold secure’ rating. Anything without this is a poor quality lock, and will leave your bike at risk of being stolen
  • Always secure your bike to something solid and secure, ideally a bike rack
  • Mark the frame of your bike with your permanent home postcode and house number using an ultraviolet pen or etching tool
  • At night, avoid taking shortcuts through badly lit areas such as alleys and parks. Stay in groups and stick to well-lit areas. Never walk home with strangers
  • Know your limits with alcohol, and make sure that you watch your drinks. If a stranger buys you a drink, make sure you can see it being poured and that you take it straight from the bartender
  • Use a taxi to get home, make sure it’s a legitimate taxi either from a marshalled taxi rank or a pre-booked private hire such as Amber Cars. Never share a taxi with strangers
  • Amber Cars will take you home even if you don’t have any money on you. Simply give them your student ID, and you can collect it and pay for the taxi at the students’ union three days later

Crime prevention advice

For further advice and guidance please feel free to contact us via phone, email or visit our Security Office:

Security Office
175 Woodhouse Lane
0113 343 5494/5

SafeZone is an app that everyone on campus can use to ask for help. It is there to give you extra peace of mind in addition to the other support offered by the University.

It is linked to the University’s Security team who are on call to help you 24/7.

The app is free and easy to use. It has three main functions:

  • For help with a physical or mental health incident, press the green First Aid button if you are unable to follow local procedure, and a member of the Security team will assist you.
  • Press the blue ‘Non-Urgent’ button to connected to Security in a non-emergency situation, for example, if you are locked out of a building.
  • The red ‘Emergency’ button is for threatening situations when you are in immediate danger.

Once you have raised an alert, do not press ‘Cancel’ until your issue has been fully resolved.

Check-in timer

You can use this to share your location with the Security team if it would help you to feel more comfortable, for example if you are working alone in a building. Set the timer and if they don’t hear from you by the time it runs out, they’ll check in to see if you’re ok.

The check-in function has a drop-down menu with a Notes section. You should include details of your location and your activity, as well as the details of who to contact in case of emergencies.

You can use the SafeZone app on the main University campus, the University sports facilities at Weetwood and Bodington.

These areas are geofenced which enables the app to connect to the Security team. If you use the app outside geofenced areas, you will still be able to call 999 in an emergency.

Whether or not you are in a geofenced area, the coordinates of your location will be displayed on your screen.

SafeZone app

How to use SafeZone

To download, search for ‘SafeZone’ or go to app stores.

Compatible to iPhones IOS v12+ and Android v6+.

To register, please use your University email address – personal email addresses will not work. Providing a photo when prompted is helpful so that responders can identify you.

Your location and profile is shared only when you check in or submit an alert. Once an alert has been closed, your location will stop being shared with the Security team.

SafeZone conforms to the University’s data protection policies, and only shares your location when you submit an alert or use the check-in function which is located above the green, red and blue buttons.

For general questions about using the app, the technology or privacy, SafeZone has a comprehensive list of FAQs on its website. Please note that not all the FAQs on the SafeZone website apply to the way that the University is using the app.

For any other questions, please contact

Read more about advice for students on staying safe in Leeds.

Lost property

Updated January 2022

If you have lost an item, you should check first with staff in the area that you last saw it. For instance, in a University library go to the enquiries desk.

The University now uses an online system that aims to speed up the process of reuniting staff and students with their lost items. If the item is not at the location, please log it using our online form.

Managed by the central Security team but linked to hubs around the University, the system logs found items and stores them locally. It searches for your property and keeps you notified of progress by email.

Using cloud-based software, the Not Lost system brings many new efficiencies.


There are lost property hubs at the Print Copy Bureau at the Roger Stevens Building, Laidlaw Library, Brotherton Library and Edward Boyle Library.

The more hubs for lost property there are around the University, the more effective the system. There’s no charge for becoming a hub and support is provided by the Security team.

To find out more, complete our ‘request to become a recognised ‘NotLost’ property hub’ online form.

Identity documents

Student ID cards are handed into the Student Services Centre, Level 9, Marjorie & Arnold Ziff Building. If your student card is handed in, you will receive an email to your student email account to let you know. Please follow the instructions in the email to collect your student card.

Passports are returned to the Passport Office or the relevant Embassy after one week.

British driving licences are returned to the DVLA after one week.

Accessible campus route

Security Services can provide out of hours key fobs to the University’s North-South Access Route.

The route is open to all students and staff throughout the day during the University’s main opening times. However, you will need a key fob if you need to access the north-south access route out-of-hours and at weekends.

The route begins at the main entrance of the University, near Parkinson Building, and ends at the Worsley Building. This route, which is marked by internal and external signage and involves the use of lifts at some points, is open to all staff and students during the day during the University’s main opening times. However, out of hours and at weekends, students and staff requiring access to this route will need to use a key fob (an electric unlocking device). You can apply for a key fob using the application form below.

Key fob application form

Please complete and return to the Security Services team (details are on the form) who will process this request for you.

Customer Service Excellence 2019-2020

Security Services has achieved Customer Service Excellence ®, a government standard that recognises an organisation’s commitment to putting customers first. The Customer Service Excellence ® standard challenges organisations to examine their service in relation to 57 criteria that have been shown to influence customer satisfaction. We achieved a significantly positive result, receiving ‘Compliance plus’ for eight standard criteria across all assessed services, the most criteria that any first time participating organisation has ever received.

PC Becky Hurrell and Security Services walking near Laidlaw

Walk Safe


Customer identification

Every year, for the past 20 years, Security Services have run a successful student safety event during Fresher’s Week called Walk Safe.

Each year, the University of Leeds welcomes thousands of new students from around the world, many of whom are away from home for the first time and living in University accommodation. Freshers Week is a very important and busy time on campus when students are offered events, nights out and meet & greets to help them get to know the campus and the City of Leeds.

The Walk Safe project runs for nine consecutive nights, with the entire Security Team tasked with providing crime prevention and safety advice. In 2018, the team succeeded in building on previous initiatives to deliver the biggest event, interacting with over 4000 students.

The project is organised by Malcolm Dawson, Security Services Manager, who consults with West Yorkshire Police on crime trends around the University and the surrounding areas. This information is then used to create the operational order that is passed between the Security Teams on duty during Walk Safe.

Throughout Walk Safe, the Security Teams undertake highly visible patrols covering the Woodhouse corridor running from the university to the Brownlee Centre. West Yorkshire Police also increases its number of highly visible patrols around the University and the surrounding areas.

In the first part of each evening, Security Officers try to engage with as many students as possible, offering crime prevention and personal safety advice and encouraging students to mark up their valuables with a UV marker. Freshers like to have fun and the later part of each night is dedicated to getting them to their accommodation safely if they are struggling.

The project provides the Security Team with a great opportunity to meet new students and talk to them, not only about Walk Safe, but about the 24-hour, 365-day service provided by the team throughout the rest of the year. It also helps students familiarise themselves with Security Services and learn how to contact the team should the need arise.

It is vital for security officers to establish this initial bond with students, especially international students, who historically are more likely to have a cultural mistrust of police and security services and can sometimes find it difficult to come forwards if they are a victim of crime.

Welcome talk

Welcome talks


Engagement and consultation

Security Services have held Staying Safe induction talks at the beginning of each academic year, for the past 20 years, with the aim of making students feel safe both on and off campus.

In 2018, a total of 40 talks were given to over 4,000 international and non-international students over a three-week period.

Staying Safe is one of the most important parts of day to day life and the Security Team aims to give proactive advice and to explain how the team can help throughout a student’s university journey.

The talks are organised by Andy Gordon- Platt, the University of Leeds Crime Prevention Advisor, and are created through discussion with West Yorkshire Police, Safer Leeds, the International Office, the Crime Reduction Officer and the Neighborhood Policing Team for the area.

The information gathered from these discussions is used to tailor the talks to recent crime trends so that they are as relevant and informative as possible. However, all new students who attend these induction talks can expect to receive advice on these core issues:

– Cycle safety

– Getting home at night

– Laptop, phone and tablet security

– Marking property

– Walk Safe

– Night bus service

– Losing your stuff

– Who to talk to or call

– Safety at home.

PC Rebecca Hurrell gives the talks alongside Andy in her role as Higher Education Liaison Officer (HELO), which is part-funded by West Yorkshire Police and the University of Leeds.

The international students arrive in the week before Fresher’s Week, which gives the team an opportunity to meet face to face with this important audience and to deliver specifically tailored talks.

PC Becky Hurrell

West Yorkshire Police Partnership


Co-operative working with other providers, partners and communities

In 2017, the campus-based position of Higher Education Liaison Officer (HELO) was established through a partnership agreement between the University of Leeds Security Services and West Yorkshire Police.

The agreement was established in 2014 by the Police and Crime Commissioner for West Yorkshire, Mark Burns-Williamson and University Secretary, Roger Gair and is reviewed every year.

The HELO position is part-funded by West Yorkshire Police and the University of Leeds and is currently held by PC Rebecca Hurrell.

Rebecca works closely with Security Services on a daily basis and directly with many Services and Societies on campus, including Leeds University Union and Student Counselling Services, to:

– Improve relations between West Yorkshire Police and the University of Leeds with the emphasis being on students

– Reduce crime, disorder and anti-social behaviour on campus and local areas

– Reduce the fear of crime among staff and students

– Improve the safety of the environment on campus

– Work with young people to increase their community safety

– Give a better understanding of the police force and the criminal justice system

– Provide a proactive response to crime helping to problem-solve with the current crime trends

– Take initial action with students who are involved in crime, for example, drug use and assault

– Assist Security Services with potentially dangerous situations

– Provide crime prevention advice to staff students and visitors.

Customer Testimonial

“I am based on campus and am here to help in any situation. Along with investigating crimes that happen on campus with the assistance of the Security Team, I can also give help, advice and support to staff and students about all manner of issues. I am always happy to meet anyone to talk about any issue, letting them know the probable lines of investigation and allowing them to be fully informed when deciding if they would like police or university assistance in the matter.” PC Rebecca Hurrell

Cycle crime reduction


Deal effectively with problems

The Cycle Action Group, set up in 2018, helped to reduce cycle crime on campus by 39% between January – October 2018.

Cycling is a favourite mode of transport for students, but cycle crime is one of the most prolific crimes the University must deal with.

Chaired by Security Services Manager, Malcolm Dawson, the Cycle Action Group brings together internal and external agencies to work collaboratively to tackle cycle crime. It consists of MEETinLEEDS, Sport & Physical Activity Services, the Sustainability Team, the Crime Prevention Advisor, the Higher Education Liaison Officer (HELO), Leeds University Union, West Yorkshire Police and Leeds City Council.

The group meets throughout the year and is supported by the ongoing work of Security Services. The main aim is to deter

cycle crime by responding to current crime trends, both on campus and at the surrounding halls of residence, plus offering crime prevention advice to staff and students.

Crime Prevention Officer, Andy Gordon- Platt, is integral to this process through the important work he does with new students each year relating to crime prevention. The security office sells bike locks and bike lights, helping prevent cycle crime and promoting safe cycling, and the Sustainability Team promotes the Cycling to Work Scheme and recycles bikes abandoned on campus by sending them to various charities.

The group is looking to continually improve with innovative ideas going forward. For example, improving the digital marketing of crime prevention by using social media, advertising good news stories and updating web content.

Key contacts

Contact information for staff within Security Services.

Security Office0113 343 2222 (emergency)
0113 343 5494/5 (general enquiries)
Mark BownassHead of Security0113 343
Phil ThompsonDeputy Head of Security0113 343
PC Laura BeatonHigher Education Liaison Officer07719417879 (8am-4pm, Mon–Fri)
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