A stronger police presence will be seen in Durham City this week as university students arrive for the start of the term.
With Covid-19 restrictions relaxed, students are expected to go out more often, with many exploring the city for the first time.
Additional patrols are carried out during the evening to help keep those studying in the city safe, and officers urge students to make sure they are taking care of themselves and others.
Go here for more County Durham news and updates live from County Durham
Inspector David Turner, of Durham Constabulary, said: âWhether you are a student coming to Durham for the first time or coming back for another year, this is obviously an exciting chapter in your life.
âConsidering the restrictions related to Covid-19 last year, it’s understandable that you want to go out and meet friends.
“However, it’s important that you do it safely, whether it’s knowing your limits if you drink, planning your route to and from your home before you go out, or making sure no one is left behind. for account. “
Insp. Turner added, âDurham is one of the safest cities in the country, but for many of our students it is an unfamiliar place, and we need them to remember it when they are on the move.
âOur agents will be on site throughout the welcome and orientation week, and we encourage students to say hello.
An agent-produced video is available to students during induction and orientation week, which covers a range of personal safety issues.
As students move into their new accommodation, they are also reminded of the importance of not leaving valuables on display, locking doors and windows, leaving lights on when going out to that the property looks occupied and respect its neighbors.
Durham University also offers lectures and safety information to students during Welcome and Orientation Week and appointed freshman representatives help new students find their way around the city.
A nightlight map has been designed to highlight illuminated walking routes.
While Durham Students’ Union operates an overnight taxi service that students can call home, costing Â£ 2 each way.
Sam Dale, Director of Student Support and Well-Being at Durham University, said: âThe safety of our students is of the utmost importance to us.
âDurham is a safe place to live, work and study and we are committed to making it even safer.
“This is why we are part of key partnerships such as Durham City Safety Group and why we work closely with the Police Liaison at Durham Constabulary University.
âOur key tip for students to stay safe is: if you choose to drink alcohol, please do so responsibly; always plan how you will get home before you go out; take safe paths back home avoiding the river; and take care of your friends and stay together. returning on foot.
“If students have security concerns, they can contact their college or the University Police Liaison Team.”
Alan Patrickson, Chairman of the Durham City Safety Group and Chief Executive Officer of the Durham County Council for Neighborhoods and Climate Change, said: âWe are delighted to welcome new students and return to our wonderful city and hope that they will once again be able to fully enjoy what Durham has to offer as Covid restrictions continue to ease.
“Durham is a very safe place, but we encourage students to follow the advice of the police to both plan ahead for how they and their friends get home after a night out and know their limits when drinking. . “
For the latest County Durham news delivered straight to your inbox every day, go here to sign up for our free newsletter