Skip to main content

Stay Safe

Stay safe

Exeter, Falmouth and Penryn are generally safe places to live but it’s always best to be aware of how to stay safe and who to contact for help. These pages provide information, advice and guidance on how to have fun, stay safe and be respectful.

We encourage all students to take the Respect Matters quiz and look out for training information on how to become an active bystander.

For information and guidance from the university on coronavirus (COVID-19) please visit our coronavirus website.

SWaN (Safety of Women at Night) Exeter Charter

This charter has been developed as part of Exeter’s commitment to keeping the city a safe place, where women feel confident and safe at night. The Safety of Women at Night Charter is a voluntary pledge to prioritise the safety of women in Exeter, and to acknowledge it is the responsibility of all of us to take practical steps together to keep our city safe for everyone.

Who to call in an emergency

If there is an immediate emergency call 999 and ask for the police, ambulance, fire service or coastguard. If you have a hearing or speech impairment, you can use their textphone service 18000 or text 999 if you’ve pre-registered with the emergency SMS service.

If you live in Exeter, for support on campus, you can also contact:

If you live in Falmouth or Penryn, for support on campus, contact:

When you call 999 you should request the police if a serious offence is in progress or has just been committed, someone is in immediate danger or harm, property is in danger of being damaged, or a serious disruption to the public is likely. Request the ambulance service for a medical emergency, or the fire service for an unplanned or dangerous fire. For an emergency on the beach, coast or in the sea, call 999 and ask for the coastguard.

To call the police for non-emergency enquires, use 101. If you have a hearing or speech impairment, use their textphone service on 18001 101.

You can also call the NHS for non-emergency health issues on 111 or visit their website here.

Report an incident

In an emergency always call 999.

If you feel that you have witnessed or been subject to any form of harassment, bullying, intimidation or discrimination we encourage you to report it and to seek the help or advice you may need on these webpages. We have a variety of reporting tools including anonymous tools as well as advisors you can speak to about your experience.

We have produced student pathway and staff pathways‌ flowcharts about the complaints process.

To report a crime to the police email, phone 101, or use webchat services on the Devon and Cornwall Police website.

Getting home safely

The best way to stay safe getting home at night is to stick with your friends. 

Walking home

In case you do find yourself on your own:

  • You are safest in well-lit and busy areas. Avoid badly lit car parks, underground walkways and open areas
  • Cover up expensive-looking jewellery, mobile phones, keys, cash and cards
  • If you feel unsafe while walking, Nightline offer a free confidential helpline in which someone will stay on the phone with you: 01392 724000 
  • If you find yourself in trouble, the best form of defence is to get away and head towards busier areas
  • If you are trapped, bring attention to yourself and make as much noise as possible by shouting or screaming
  • Call 999 as soon as it is possible to do so

Staying safe on public transport

  • Always plan your journey, knowing departure times and checking for changes to the schedule
  • Try to have your ticket or money to hand so you do not have your purse or wallet on show
  • If you are travelling alone, especially at night, try to stay with groups of people or arrange to be met at the end of your journey
  • When you are waiting for a bus or train, try to stand in well-lit places
  • If the bus or train is empty when you start your journey try to sit near to the driver or conductor.

Night Bus service in Exeter

We’ve worked with Stagecoach to introduce a Night Bus service in Exeter this academic year 2021/22. It runs on Wednesday-Saturday, from late evening until 4am. The service will incorporate the Streatham campus and is designed to support students returning from the city centre. You can view the Night Bus Timetable 2022. You can use all Stagecoach network tickets on this service along with the discounted Unirider tickets. Meanwhile, the single fare is only £2 as the University has subsidised the service to ensure affordability for students.

Whilst you are out

If you are feeling uncomfortable or need help on a night out there are number of different ways to get support. In an emergency you should always call 999.

Ask for Angela (Exeter and Falmouth)

Currently in operation in the Exeter Students’ Guild venues (The Lemon Grove and The Ram), at the Penryn campus (The Stannary) and shortly to be introduced in Exeter city venues, the Ask for Angela initiative can provide a safe way out of a situation that has gone wrong. Anyone in a vulnerable or just uncomfortable situation that needs help can ask "for Angela" at the bar or to a member of staff who will then ensure they are taken to a safe place already allocated in the venue. From there a parent, friend or taxi can be called and if necessary the other person asked to leave the venue. The vulnerable person’s safety is paramount and staff will have been trained to deal with such a situation.

Street Pastors (Exeter)

Street Pastors help all people, whether or not you have a faith. They offer reassurance, safety and support through listening, caring and helping.

Falmouth Street Pastors are in Falmouth town every Saturday night between 10pm and 3am. They patrol from the main street down to Event Square and back and can generally be found near Club I and Mangoes.

Exeter Street Pastors are out on a Friday and Saturday night in Exeter City Centre.

  • Drink Aware Crew (Exeter)
    Go under different names in different venues but an example is the very successfully run scheme in Timepiece where “Care Bears” are there to look after anyone who needs a bit of support due to alcohol or just someone to talk to. Having someone of a younger age makes them easier to approach and talk to than an adult member of staff if an issue arises. This help can be anything from locating friends to helping arrange to get home.
  • Best Bar None accredited pubs (Exeter)
    46 venues in Exeter proudly display maroon coloured plaques to show they are Best Bar None Accredited venues. This m.eans these venues promote responsible management and have met high standards to reduce alcohol related crime and antisocial behaviour in Exeter by providing a safe venue for customers to enjoy

Night Bus service in Exeter

We’ve worked with Stagecoach to introduce a Night Bus service in Exeter this academic year 2021/22. It runs on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, from late evening until 4am. The service will incorporate St Luke’s and Streatham campuses and is designed to support students returning from the city centre. You can view and download the Night Bus Timetable here. You can use all Stagecoach network tickets on this service along with the discounted Unirider tickets. Meanwhile, the single fare is only £2 as the University has subsidised the service to ensure affordability for students.

Street marshalls (Falmouth)

There will be night-time street marshals in the town, around the beaches and some residential areas every night help the police ensure everyone enjoys themselves in a Covid-safe way.

Drink spiking

A person’s drink can be spiked to make them more vulnerable for a variety of reasons, including theft, sexual assault, or as an attempted joke. Drink ‘spiking’ includes the act of adding alcohol (not just other unwanted chemicals) to a drink.

Drink spiking is taken very seriously and carries a maximum 10 year prison sentence. Adding a few extra shots to a friend’s drink may seem like a harmless bit of fun but not only could it ruin a good night out, it could also result in serious criminal charges.

Don’t leave your drink unattended and never accept a drink if you haven’t seen it being poured/opened, or accept a drink from someone you don’t know or trust.

It can be a scary experience and it’s important to be able to recognise the signs your drink has been spiked or how to help someone you suspect has been a victim. If you start to feel strange or more drunk than you should be, then get help straight away.

Find out more about recognising the signs of drink spiking and getting help.

On campus


Campus Safety Guide

Our Campus Safety Guide includes information on safer walking routes, CCTV, and tips for staying safe on nights out.

Estate Patrol

Estate Patrol is a mobile, response based service covering all aspects of security, safety and welfare for staff and students.  They are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Contact Estate Patrol:

  • Routine: 01392 723999
  • Emergency: 01392 722222

Residence Life Team

Residence Life Teams support students living in University accommodation. They can provide a listening ear, advice on student life and signposting to other support services.

Night patrol

Residence Patrollers work overnight during term time to provide extra security around the accommodation blocks and also to be available for any welfare issues that might occur out of hours.

The Residence Patrollers are available during the night if any student feels that they need to talk with somebody or they have a concern that they would like to discuss but don’t feel comfortable talking to the Estate Patrol Team

Guardian Angel Service

Estate Patrol provides a “Guardian Angel” service to any member of the University who needs to walk alone after dark from any location on campus to any of the car parks. This will involve using the CCTV system to monitor their route.

Anyone wishing to use this service should call the Estate Patrol on 3999 when they are getting ready to leave their building to arrange with the duty supervisor to monitor CCTV cameras on the route that will be taken.

Neighbourhood Beat Manager

Our University Beat Manager is PC Alex Banks, her details can be found on the community warden page


Need help now?

Check out our pages for advice about where to receive it, particularly out of hours.

Campus Security

Campus Security provides security services for students, staff and visitors 24 hours a day, 365 days of the year. They’re available as a point of contact for welfare-related issues outside normal working hours for students.

You can contact them on 01326 255875 or in an emergency (or if you need First Aid) call 01326 254444.

Night Services team

If you need help out of hours you can contact the Night Services team based at Glasney Lodge. They also conduct regular out of hours patrols of each of the residences. They can help with concerns about noise, behaviour or welfare – you can call them on 01326 253503.

The Students’ Union

Your Students’ Union has a wellbeing database packed with welfare and safety information to help you find the information and advice you need, 24 hours a day, 365 days of the year. 

Multifaith Chaplaincy

The Multifaith Chaplaincy is there to offer pastoral and spiritual care to all students – whether or not you are a person of faith. You can get in touch with them at or visit them at Cottage 8, Tremough Barton Cottages – Monday – Friday 9am to 5pm.


SafeZone is an online app that helps us to help you whilst on campus, if you request it. The app is available for all colleagues and students to download and sign into if they wish. Find out more.

Sexual consent

Consent means that you have given permission, or that someone has given you permission to engage in any intimate activity for sex. Any sexual contact without consent is illegal.

Consent is an essential part of healthy relationships and it’s really important to know what it is and the many ways to spot it. Both you and the person you’re with always need to consent before sex or any intimate activity.

Take the Respect Matters quiz to understand more about consent or watch this video.

When you or someone says no, then it means no. If someone is not able to give consent, this also means no.

Sexual misconduct can have a devastating impact on those who experience it, and cause significant physical and psychological harm as well as being a violation of human dignity.

We take sexual misconduct extremely seriously and expect that all members of our community will take responsibility for building and maintaining an inclusive, equal, positive and safe cultural environment for all.

We understand that coming forward to report sexual misconduct can be hard. We will take any reports of sexual misconduct seriously and make sure individuals are treated with dignity and respect and receive support.

You can find out more, including how to report, and what to do if someone shares with you that they have experienced sexual misconduct on our dedicated pages.

Hate crime

Hate crime is against the law.

A hate crime is any crime perceived to have been motivated by hostility or prejudice. It can be committed against a person or their property based on:

  • Disability
  • Race or ethnicity
  • Religion or belief
  • Sexual orientation
  • Gender identity
  • or any part of someone’s personal identity

Hate crimes can include things like:

  • Being called names or other forms of verbal abuse
  • Being sent offensive letters, emails or text messages
  • Being attacked or threatened with violence
  • Having your property interfered with or damaged

If any of these things are happening to you, you should report them to the police and also report them to the University.

The University and police take reports of hate crime seriously. We have a zero tolerance approach to hate crime and work together on this.

The police are committed to investigating all forms of hate crime. The University cannot report a hate crime to the police on your behalf but we can support you in making a complaint to the police.

If you are not sure if you have experienced a crime or not, we would still encourage you to report it to the police or talk to someone about this. Sometimes what you have experienced may not be a crime, but if it is motivated by hostility or prejudice these are called hate incidents and these are also monitored by the police.

How do I report?

If it is an emergency where life is threatened, people are injured or offenders are nearby and an urgent response is required, ring 999.

You can report hate crime to the police in a number of different ways:

If you do not wish to report to the police direct, you can report through a third party who may also be able to provide help and guidance:

By reporting through a third party you can remain anonymous if you wish to, but please read the guidance on the provider website about how to do this.

The University cannot report a hate crime to the police on your behalf but we can support you to make a report to the police. You can ask for this support when you report an incident informally or formally or through the Wellbeing Service or the Student Cases team.

You can read more about hate crime, how to report and details of third parties on the Devon and Cornwall Police website.

Fire safety

We’re committed to your safety and do all we can to reduce the chances of a fire occurring. Fortunately, fires and other emergencies are very rare but please read the following advice to help keep you safe:

  • If you hear a fire alarm leave the building immediately (don’t stop to collect your belongings) and don’t go back in until authorised to do so
  • Make yourself aware of the emergency exits from your building/s and never obstruct these routes or doorways. Avoid wedging open Fire Doors
  • Don’t cover up or remove any fire or smoke detectors
  • Be careful when cooking and don’t leave cooking appliances unattended. Don’t use appliances (including toasters) in any room other than the kitchen
  • Don’t overload plug sockets
  • Switch off electrical equipment like hair straighteners and mobile phone chargers when not in use

Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service also provide fire safety advice for students, as do Cornwall Fire and Rescue Service student webpages.

Private rented accommodation

If you’re in private accommodation your landlord should have given you fire safety information – if not ask your landlord for it, or seek advice from Devon & Somerset Fire and Rescue service

Using decorations

If you want to put up some decorations for Christmas or other occasions think carefully about whether they may be flammable and don’t put them near lights or heat sources. Remember, candles and other open flames aren’t allowed in residential halls and most private rented accommodation. 


**Always know your escape route – the quickest way out – and have an alternative plan**