[Shelby Loasby | News Sub Editor]
The University of Hertfordshire has been named in the list of top 20 safest town for students in the UK.
Hatfield was rated 18th by StuRents.com – a student accomodation search portal – who compiled official police data which looked at how exposed a student would be to crime in 64 of England and Wales’ student towns and cities.
The ratings analysed 535,468 crimes occurring across the various towns and cities in the areas surrounding 608 private halls of residence, between February 2014 and January 2015.
Hatfield ranked higher than Cambridge, London and Exeter with 157.7 crimes per thousand, whilst Swansea and Brighton ranked the bottom two with 633.1 and 829.4 crimes per thousand, respectively.
Deputy Dean of Students at the University of Hertfordshire, Geraldine Ward, said: “This isn’t the first time Hatfield’s safety has been recognised and we welcome this reiteration. We want our students to have the best possible time with us and we take their welfare very seriously.”
Ward added: “The university is proud of the highly productive partnership we have with the Hertfordshire Constabulary and the Welwyn Hatfield Community Safety Partnership and the University policing team. We do all of this to ensure our community is safe and welcoming for everyone.”
Michael Rainsford, Co-Founder of StuRents.com said: “Crime statistics serve as an important metric for students looking to make an informed choice about where to live. Our research had uncovered the alarming statistic that students line in areas with crime rates 2.5 times higher than the national average.”
Rainsford added: “This year so far has been huge for investment in the student accommodation market. We hope that going forward student safety will be high on the agenda.”
Every town and city has its good and bad areas and Hatfield is no stranger to this. Whilst it is statistically one of the safest student towns in the UK, many students still feel unsafe when walking around after a night out, primarily due to the street lights automatically turning off at midnight. In a previous UniVerse article we looked at the ‘for and against’ of street lights being turned off and found a majority vote in favour of keeping them on.
Since the article no change has been lobbied, but we would love to hear your thoughts and want to know if you feel safe in your university town. Tweet us @TridentMediaUK
For more information about student safety pop in and see our Advice and Support team at the Hutton Building, 10am-4pm, or visit sturents.com for the official report.