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University of Birmingham - Students be careful where you choose to live

(34 Posts)
GingerPunch Fri 28-Feb-14 16:11:55

Very disturbing story in the paper today, 8 students robbed at knifepoint in their student rented house close to the University, shocking.
www.birminghammail.co.uk/news/midlands-news/university-birmingham-students-robbed-knife-point-6755298

creamteas Fri 28-Feb-14 17:13:57

Clearly this incident is unpleasant, but one story does not really indicate a crime wave.....

LRDtheFeministDragon Fri 28-Feb-14 20:26:49

It doesn't, but it's good advice.

Students are usually renting for the first time, in a city they don't know. They do need to think about things like crime which they might be a little naive about. Most universities have some guidance on offer, but it's not always as well publicized as it might be.

PrincessOfChina Fri 28-Feb-14 20:29:36

That area is pretty damn safe. Very busy, and I doubt there's a single house on the street that's not a student house.

I suspect this was a planned raid on any group of students and could have happened in any student area.

Terrifying though.

LRDtheFeministDragon Fri 28-Feb-14 20:32:15

I apologize; I don't know Birmingham and just assumed. blush

I expect you're right. Scary. sad

georgie22 Fri 28-Feb-14 20:39:27

As others have already commented most houses in this area of Birmingham are occupied by students. It's not a dodgy area but I'm sure criminals target student houses as they know that there will be several laptops, tablets etc. in each house. Poor girls must have been terrified.

PrincessOfChina Fri 28-Feb-14 20:45:56

No worries. That area of Selly Oak is very much a student area. I've also heard stories of taxi drivers passing on info about when students are out etc so I think a warning about personal safety and general awareness is very timely.

MostlyMama Fri 28-Feb-14 21:10:08

I used to live in a hostel near the university and I can assure you it is NOT a nice area.

rightsaidfrederick Fri 28-Feb-14 23:56:45

Princess - I've heard stories of taxi drivers doing that in another city. I don't normally get taxis to nights out, but when I do I always make sure that the taxi driver is under the impression that someone's still in, e.g. standing on the doorstep and calling "bye Fred" to an imaginary resident before locking the front door.

BackforGood Sat 01-Mar-14 00:07:34

What CreamTeas and PrincessofChina said.

Firstly the first years live in halls a little way aware from there anyway, and 2ndly, all the roads there are student houses. It's a very alive, vibrant student area - no, if you weren't a student you wouldn't want to live there, but it doesn't make it a NOT nice area MostlyMama

Must have been horrible for the girls involved, but it's hardly typical.

Katkins1 Sat 01-Mar-14 00:09:46

Mostlymama, I used to live in the same hostel! I suspect the student's union will be on to this; they are quite protective of the University community. I go to another uni in B'ham,lots of non-resident students rent houses in Bournville. Never any problems.

Katkins1 Sat 01-Mar-14 00:15:46

Also, just read it. It's not like it was broad daylight, the girls were walking home alone at 3am, most likely tipsy and vulnerable. That does not make it right, but as above, personal safety needs re-iterating rather than marking an area as 'bad' because of one incident.

Theas18 Sat 01-Mar-14 20:33:52

Honestly? I'm a brummie and live close to that area. It's a student area. Fully of "party animals" as KK said - mostly rolling in the road at 3am! ( I know, I've driven dd home from work at 2.30 along the Bristol road). If you were going robbing it wouldn't be rocket science that it'd be a good place...

People get mugged all over the place in "good" and "bad " areas but when you see people behaving in an obviously vulnerable way .....

The uni are hot on safety I'm sure they'll be into it.

Katkins1 Sat 01-Mar-14 20:37:49

Hopefully, shame for the girls, they must be so scared to go out now. I'm at uni (not Birmingham); and I don't think Universities emphasise personal safety enough.

HanSolo Sat 01-Mar-14 21:06:36

The young man that was knifed to death recently (?Ribera) was just by there when it happened (attending the funeral wake of a friend that had also been stabbed to death). I had been surprised, as this is really a student area- not many families/professionals at all. There's usually plenty of people about, even late at night.

GingerPunch Sun 02-Mar-14 14:26:17

Knowing a student who lives in this area, I have been told that in recent months their friends were burgled when they were in the house near to the street in this story, a woman was raped in the next street, and there was a murder at the bottom of the road as already mentioned. I totally agree with Katkins1 that Universities do not emphasise personal safety enough. Clearly lack of police presence doesn't help. Students are naive targets and they don't realise it. This story is alarming and should have made headline news. I want to warn all parents who are considering sending their sons or daughters to university to be aware of these frightening incidents when renting student accomodation as landlords will not tell you bad news.

creamteas Sun 02-Mar-14 15:16:52

My university, like many others, puts on lots of events around personal safety, but they are usually poorly attended.

Young people aged 16-25 are at the highest risk of crime whether students or not.

Much of this has nothing to do with being at university as where ever they are, they are more likely to be out in public spaces, more likely to be drinking and less likely to be conscious about the risks of crime.

Katkins1 Sun 02-Mar-14 15:44:07

That's awful, Gingerpunch. I didn't realise the extent of it. I live on a council estate in South B'ham , and it's not a nice area, you do have to be incredibly careful. I'm doing my post-grad there, and was thinking of moving closer, but I'm re-thinking that idea now

eurochick Sun 02-Mar-14 15:55:50

It's an awful incident, but that area is student central so it's not really sensible to warn students off it. It's far better that the police should focus on catching the criminals, rather than suggesting a wholesale move of the student population.

I lived in the next street to Tiverton Rd for my second and fourth years at Brum, and almost every house round there was a student house. The housing was poor, but the area felt safe as there were so many students that it seemed like an extended part of the campus. You have two of the big student pubs at the top of the road. If you were coming home late, it's likely there would be other students around and so on. There will always be crime - my wallet was stolen by some cheap woman my housemate dragged home one night. But that can happen anywhere. I've lived in big cities all my life and been mugged once - in Clapham, where the houses go for £1m+.

GingerPunch Mon 03-Mar-14 10:47:09

This should be featured on Crimewatch imo, four men with knives, intending to rob & stab young women, very serious crime, like I say this area is dangerous and having heard of other awful crimes nearby from terrified students I wonder why there is a lack of police presence late at night in this street. Something really needs to be done to safeguard people regardless that these properties are rented by students. If this robbery had happened in an old peoples home or Buckingham Palace I'm sure it would have been high profile news.

WaywardGirl Mon 03-Mar-14 10:58:09

Having lived a couple of streets away until a couple of years ago, this is a very unusual crime. Yes, lots of burglaries, but as others have said that's unsurprising in an almost exclusively student area where every house is practically guaranteed to have multiple laptops/phones/cameras etc. Mostly where doors and windows have been left unlocked. Our neighbours were burgled whils I lived there - turned out they never bothered to lock te front door hmm

And the SU there is very proactive about promoting safety, lots of initiatives, schemes, campaigns etc. The only time I ever had trouble (attempted mugging) was earlyish on a weekday morning in broad daylight.

WaywardGirl Mon 03-Mar-14 10:59:38

Also, I vaguely know one of the girls through friends and have heard that some of the news reports aren't particularly accurate/have exaggerated some aspects.

GingerPunch Tue 18-Mar-14 12:53:47

Another shocking armed robbery and a violent mugging on University of Birmingham campus:

birmingham.tab.co.uk/2014/03/18/selly-crime/

Students take care

UptheChimney Tue 18-Mar-14 13:54:32

GingerPunch I'm not sure of your motives? Birmingham's a big city, with pockets of deprivation & areas of affluence. No different to any other major city.

You could be seen as scaremongering.

GingerPunch Tue 18-Mar-14 18:57:55

No UpTheChimney just posting relevant current alarming news stories for naive students.

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