Keep your bicycle secure at UoR

Two students using bikes to get around Whiteknights campus

Cycling is a great way to keep fit, keep travel costs down and be kinder to the environment, and we have a perfect campus to do it on. With cycling comes the responsibility of keeping your bicycle safe and secure. 
Our top tips for keeping your bicycle secure: 

  • Use one of the dedicated areas with bike locking points 
  • Lock the frame of your bike to the locking point and whenever possible include the wheel(s), particularly if they are quick-release, or take them with you 
  • Never leave your bike unattended overnight unless in secure storage 
  • Record the make, model and serial number and any other unique identifying features of your bike 
  • Enquire at Security or your local police station whether it is possible to have your bike frame marked with your postcode followed by your house number 
  • Take out insurance cover 
  • Register your bike on the national database, Bike Register – this is the database that the police will check in the event of any bikes being stolen and then recovered 

Check out the University’s safe cycling pages for more information on how to keep your bike secure, what to do if your bike is stolen, and for some cycle safety advice.  

Visit Essentials for more advice on securing your valuables at university.  

Lock your bicycle securely – D-Locks available from Security Services 

Make sure you lock your bicycle securely to a solid object, using a D-lock, or even better using two locks. D-Locks are available to purchase from the online security shop for £14.00. When you come to collect your D-lock from the security window in Whiteknights House, please bring proof of purchase.  

Check out these tips for how to lock your bike most effectively.  

Get your bike a free security label available from Security Services 

A security label on your bike doesn’t necessarily stop it from being stolen but makes it less attractive to thieves. It allows police to prove the bike does not belong to the thief and to return it to the owner. Free labels and advice are available from the security window in Whiteknights House. 

How the University is working to keep you safe  

The University’s security team is on hand 24/7 and strives to maintain a safe and secure environment across the University’s sites. They provide: 

  • Security patrols, surveillance, and emergency response for all University property 
  • An extensive CCTV network
  • 24-hour control room  

They also offer a range of security equipment, including high visibility vests, and personal attack alarms. These can be purchased from the security team’s online shop, and orders can be picked up from the Security Office in Whiteknights House. 

This is alongside a programme of work to implement additional crime prevention methods:  

  • This academic year, the estates team, working together with Thames Valley Police, commenced Operation Velo in response to the rise in bike thefts. As part of this operation, there are more patrols visually around campus and controllers are watching more CCTV and respond as soon as possible if they see bike thieves come on site. These measures have helped reduce bike thefts by 6% in the last six months.  
  • The estates team are working hard to update the University’s CCTV as a priority. They are in the process of surveying our 640 cameras across campus and implementing a new digital system, we will prioritise bike shed locations as priority for the installation of these new cameras.
  • The University are also looking at a project to enhance the current secure bike shed at the library. This new security system would include a larger more secure unit with CCTV and tanoy system as well as upgraded locking swipe card. 

The University and the estates team are continuously working to make campus as safe as possible. If you need to contact the security team you can email, or call 0118 378 7799 for general enquiries. For emergencies, call 0118 378 6300.  

To find out more about the University’s security team, and for advice on keeping safe at university, check out safety and security pages on Essentials.  

Dr Bike on Wednesdays between 12.00 – 14.00 at the Palmer Quad for free bike maintenance and safety checks 

As well as bike security, the University is also working hard to ensure that all students who cycle to campus can do so safely. Drop-in Dr Bike sessions are available on campus from 12:00 – 14:00 every Wednesday in during term time. These take place in Palmer Quad. 

Bring your bike to be checked and fixed by a bike mechanic for free, charging only for the parts that might be needed.  

For the full list of Dr Bike sessions taking place throughout the summer term, check out the cycling to University page, where you’ll also find useful information on how to keep yourself safe when cycling.  

Hire a bike with Unicycle

If you want to use a bicycle while you are in Reading but do not want to buy one, you can take advantage of the Unicycle scheme run by Reading Students’ Union and loan recycled bicycles by the term or year.

Bikes can be hired for £40 per term or £80 for the full year + a £100 refundable deposit (includes a secure D-lock, lights and insurance).

Enquire quickly, as they only have a limited number of bicycles available! To find out more information, contact

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