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Take care of yourself out there! If you’re used to a city environment you may not feel particularly threatened by Tooting. However, many of you may not have lived in an area like this before, so if the idea of Tooting frightens you, there are a number of things you can do in order to reduce your risk and feel safer. The chance of becoming a victim of violent crime is low, but it does happen, so please take care.

  • Never walk home alone at night. This is even more important if you’ve been drinking, as alcohol affects your judgement of people and situations.

  • Be alert and aware of what is happening around you—don’t wear headphones as you won’t be able to hear if someone is coming up behind you.

  • Walk purposefully. If you look lost or frightened you are more likely to be attacked.

  • Buy some gloves and keep your hands out of your pockets so you are free to defend yourself!

  • Keep close to busy routes where possible.

  • Where possible, keep away from dark and deserted areas, especially alleyways.

  • Keep to the middle of the pavement and walk towards on-coming traffic; it deters kerb crawlers.

  • Never accept lifts from strangers, even if they say they are a taxi or mini-cab.

  • Keep jewellery out of sight.

  • Don’t walk around talking on your mobile phone (especially at night!). It will draw attention to you, distract you, and is easy to steal.

  • Keep your wallet/purse in an inside pocket, and don’t carry large amounts of cash.

  • Have your keys ready as you approach your house or car.

  • If you think you are being followed, stay calm and head towards people and a well-lit, busy area and ask for help.

  • Consider self-defence classes to build your confidence.

If you are attacked: scream, shout and run away at the first opportunity and call 999. Personal attack alarms are available to all first year students at halls. You can get one from security.

On public transport

  • Where possible, know the times of your buses or trains.

  • Avoid waiting at deserted stations/stops.

Avoid empty compartments and sit near the guard/conductor/driver rather than alone.


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