Staying safe when you return to campus
The safety and wellbeing of the Keele community - including our staff, students, partners and visitors - is our highest priority and on this page you can find out more about how to stay safe on campus when you return.
Staff should complete the Covid-19 staff risk assessment (available on the intranet) before returning to campus, as part of the return to work checklist.
What you should do
- Wash your hands regularly, with soap and water, for at least 20 seconds.
- Catch coughs and sneezes properly and then wash hands thoroughly.
- Maintain 2m social distancing at all times from those outside your student household.
- Wear a face covering when you are indoors, except when in your student household
- Adhere to all social distancing guidance regarding one-way systems, queuing, and building and room entrances and exits.
What we will do
- We will make sure that surfaces will be cleaned regularly.
- We will provide extra cleaning of rooms and buildings, ensuring they are Covid secure.
- We will provide hand sanitiser stations across campus.
- We will timetable your classes so that you will be in small groups on campus.
- We will provide extra support for staff and students who are classed as being vulnerable.
- We will provide support to you if you have symptoms of coronavirus, have tested positive, or need to self-isolate due to exposure to the virus.
- If you have symptoms of Covid-19 then you should get a free NHS test. Until you have the test results, you and anybody who you live with must self-isolate
- If you test positive for Covid-19 then you and anybody who you live with must continue to self-isolate for the remainder of 14 days.
- If you test negative, you do not need to self-isolate and neither does anybody else in your household.
- Please be considerate and do not be offended if someone politely reminds you of the rules in place to keep you and everyone else safe. However please note that for various reasons relating to health and equality some people may be not able to wear a face covering.
If you have symptoms of Covid-19 then you should get a free NHS test. Students should also notify the University via the Covid-19 notification form. Until you have the test results, you and anybody who you live with must self-isolate.
If you test positive, then you need to notify the University via the Covid-19 notification form.
As part of our efforts to keep the Keele community safe and minimise the spread of Covid-19, all staff and students are asked to download and use the ‘SafeZone’ app to assist with our track and trace requirements should there be a confirmed case of Covid-19.
By downloading the app once and enabling “automatic check-in" you don’t need to do anything else, and our Covid Response Team will then be able to let you know if you ever need to self-isolate, etc.
The SafeZone app is:
- Free to download
- Easy to use
- Also gives you immediate access to on-campus security
- Is privacy protected
Everybody is also encouraged to use the NHS Covid-19 app both on and off campus as part of the national track and trace campaign
Updated 29 September 2020
The University requires that staff, students and visitors wear a face covering in all indoor public spaces, in line with UK government advice.
A face covering is face mask, scarf, bandana, or religious garment that fit securely around the face. Please note that face visors will not be accepted as a form of face covering, unless other face coverings cannot be worn due to health reasons.
Areas covered are as follows:
- All indoor public areas e.g. building foyers, thoroughfares, and corridors
- Lecture theatres and teaching rooms
- Library facilities
- Communal areas of all buildings e.g. kitchen facilities
- Multiple-occupancy toilet facilities
- Campus shops
- Faith spaces
- Students’ Union Building
Please note: Teaching staff will not be required to wear a face covering when delivering in situ teaching (though they may choose to wear a face visor that will be provided) as a minimum of 2m social distancing should be in place. Where maintaining this distancing is not possible, additional mitigations will be implemented, informed by risk assessments.
Face coverings will not be required in the following spaces:
- Offices (including multiple occupancy office areas)
- Areas where the use of face coverings would be impractical (e.g. where staff and/or students eat or drink – however coverings should be worn in these areas if not eating or drinking)
Exemptions - Sunflower lanyard and ID card scheme available
A small number of staff and students may be unable to wear a face covering e.g. for medical reasons. In these cases, individuals will be offered with a means to easily show that they are exempt from the requirement.
Anyone you see wearing a Hidden Disabilities sunflower lanyard, or carrying an ID card, is doing so to make the reason they are not wearing a face covering clear to everyone. If you're exempt from wearing a face covering for medical reasons and would like a free lanyard and ID card to show this, please email firstname.lastname@example.org and we will post these to you (this is open to both students and staff). In your email, please include:
- The address you'd like the lanyard and ID card posting to.
- Which ID card type you would like - you can choose for it to read 'face covering exempt' or 'hidden disabilities'.
Please note, there are some circumstances - for example, in laboratories - where wearing the sunflower lanyard will not automatically exempt you from wearing PPE, for health and safety reasons. If you're a student, please contact email@example.com to discuss your specific requirements.
Provision of face coverings
Individuals are asked to provide their own face covering. Disposable face masks can be purchased from the campus supermarket and will be available at certain building/room entry points to ensure all individuals can comply with the University’s policy.
All of our buildings have now been risk assessed with appropriate measures put in place to remove or minimise risk of Covid-19 transmission. Click here to access these risk assessments.
Where possible, all buildings will have one door for entry and one for exit. Signage will be in place to remind people of the need to keep social distancing.
In some cases, we may track how many people enter each building to ensure it does not become overcrowded.
Hand sanitisers will be made available at all entrances and exits and within buildings.
All fire doors will remain operational as normal.
Corridors in buildings may have a one-way system in place to ensure social distancing. If a corridor is wide enough, there may be two ‘lanes’ to mark out the flow of traffic.
In places where queues are likely, floor signs will be placed every 2m.
Lifts should not be used, unless you have a disability which prevents you using the stairs, or if you are moving heavy/hazardous materials (i.e. where using the stairs is unsafe or not possible).
Staircases may be one way, split into ‘lanes’ or have a stop and go system. Signage will be in place to keep you informed.
Shared living, social and study spaces in our halls will be open with Covid-secure measures in place. Please refer to our coronavirus accommodation web page for full information.
To protect all our residents, please note that guests won’t be allowed into any halls of residence for at least the first semester. You cannot enter a household on campus unless you live there.
Signage will be in place to show people where to queue and barriers/screens may be put in place to aid social distancing. Some buildings may regulate how many people enter a reception area at any one time to reduce overcrowding.
High-contact areas such as service desks and communal computer equipment will be cleaned regularly.
All non-laboratory rooms will be set up in the way which best allows for social distancing – please do not attempt to rearrange these rooms.
Please ensure that you queue 2m part alongside the wall when waiting to enter a room, and make sure to wait for everyone previously in the room to leave before entering.
In all laboratories and/or workshops, the maximum occupancy of the room is likely to be no more than 25% (to be agreed) of the normal maximum occupancy depending on the activity.
Lab work should be carried out in shifts, to allow the maximum number of workers to access a space.
Workspaces should be left as soon as possible once you have completed your work, or if there is a long delay within your work.
In laboratory and workshop environments, floors will be marked every 2m to ensure social distancing. Where there are workspace bays/pods, there should be no more than one person per half bay (maximum two people per full bay).
Where a lab has more than one entrance, a one-way system will be in place, with doors being designated for entry or exit only.
Where walkways are narrow, you should communicate with others in the room when you walk around to make sure you maintain a social distance. If you are working in a bay you should face away from the main walkway and work 2m away from the main walkway if possible.
Cleaning frequencies have been increased throughout the pandemic to provide a safe environment for all.
Cleaning/sanitisation materials will be provided in teaching areas, and users will be advised to sanitise hands and their proposed workspace prior to use.
Sanitising kits will be provided in areas where users are recommended to sanitise items they may touch.
Cleaning teams will clean kitchens and communal bathrooms once a week using sanitising spray. Staff are trained to maintain social distancing and are provided with appropriate personal protective equipment.
Sanitising kits will be provided in all kitchens so students can maintain hygiene levels in-between staff cleaning the kitchens.
All mattress protectors will be laundered in-house before being placed in each unoccupied bedroom.
The Library is currently open for click and collect book collection service, for returning library books and for printing. From Monday 28th September the Library will be open from 9am - 8pm Monday to Friday and 9am - 5pm at the weekend. Click and collect will be available during these times along with printing, and bookable study spaces.
You can find out more information on the Library’s FAQs pages.
The Chapel will have a one-way system in operation: entry will be only at the west end (nearest to the Walter Moberly building), and exit at the east end (nearest Union Square). This will be clearly marked inside the building to remind you.
The kitchen area will be closed, meaning the tea/coffee-making facilities and microwave will not be available for the time being.
Sunday services will resume from Sunday 13 September and these events are in the Keele App:
- Ten:15 service: 10:15
- Catholic Mass: 12:30
The East Chapel and the Space will both remain open for private prayer while the building is open. Social distancing measures will be in place.
There will be limited capacity in the Chapel. We will provide more information as soon as we can.
The Islamic Centre relocation
The Islamic Centre (next to Barnes halls of residence) will itself not be reopening yet as it is not safe to do so. The Earth Observatory, part of the Sustainability Hub at Home Farm, is the alternative Islamic faith space available from Monday 5 October, 09:00-21:00 daily. Find out about the Covid-secure guidelines in place on the Islamic Centre web page, and access the building layout and user guide here.
Campus cafes and restaurants will be open with revised opening hours, increased levels of cleaning and social distancing measures in place.
Hand sanitiser stations will be available for use prior to entering, and on leaving food areas. Table layouts have been adjusted to allow for social distancing, as well as circulation flows within and around the outlets.
Front of house staff will be wearing visors, and face coverings should be worn by students, staff, partners and visitors when not eating. Click here for further information on face coverings around campus.
The preferred method of payment within these outlets is by Keele Card, Chip and Pin or contactless, however cash will still be accepted.
We are offering an order ahead: Click & Collect food service at our campus food outlets through the Upay app. Find out more about the order ahead service.
Due to current social distancing measures, Lindsay Bar and Barnes Bar will remain closed until further notice. KeeleSU and The KPA Clubhouse will be reopening this academic year with social distancing measures in place, providing a safe social space for all students.
Keele campus shops will be open with social distancing measures in place. All customers will be expected to follow the University Policy regarding the wearing of face coverings whilst in the store.
Hand sanitiser stations will be available for use inside the store entrance, and a member of staff will be stationed at the door to monitor capacity and answer any queries.
Campus shops may limit capacity during busy periods. It is expected that all customers follow the 2 metre social distancing rule whilst in the store.
The preferred method of payment within campus shops is by Keele Card, Chip and Pin or contactless, however cash will still be accepted.
Well Pharmacy will be open with social distancing measures in place. Please ensure that you do not enter the pharmacy if you have tested positive for coronavirus or are displaying coronavirus symptoms.
Face coverings must be worn unless medically not recommended. Hand sanitiser will be available for use prior to entering, and on leaving.
There is a maximum limit of 3 patients/customers in the pharmacy at any time, and all customers must follow the one way system and observe 2m distancing. It is no longer possible to wait in the pharmacy for prescriptions.
We have measures in place to help protect all of us and we would like to thank you for your patience and support.
- Do not enter the pharmacy if you have had a positive Covid-19 test or if you have any of the following symptoms: fever, dry cough, shortness of breath, loss of sense of taste/smell. Instead you need to ask someone else to come to the pharmacy for you. Please find out more about what to do if you have symptoms as students and staff must notify the university.
- As we enter the cough/cold/flu season, many people will experience symptoms similar to those listed above. Although they may not be Covid-related, the rule still applies that even if you think you have just a cold or simple cough, you must not enter the pharmacy. Instead you need to send a friend who is well and who has not been in contact with someone with symptoms.
- Maximum of 3 patients/customers in the pharmacy at any time (please don't come in with friends who are not collecting anything) – please follow the one way system and observe 2m distancing.
- Face masks must be worn unless medically not recommended, and please use hand gel on entry.
- For any services where the consultation room is used we will need to check your temperature beforehand using a contactless infra-red thermometer.
- Minimise your time spent in the pharmacy - have a clear idea of what you need before you arrive.
- Please wait at least half an hour from having a GP/nurse appointment (at your medical practice) to coming in to pick up medication. Anyone needing to wait for a prescription will be asked not to wait in the pharmacy but to instead wait elsewhere to minimise the time spent on the premises and allow others to enter.
- For repeat prescriptions, please leave at least 3 working days from requesting your medication from Keele surgery before it will be ready for collection. For prescription collection from other surgeries, please ideally leave one week, as per local NHS guidelines.
- Sign up for our SMS text messaging service - that way you'll know when your prescription is ready to collect. If you have ordered a repeat prescription from the surgery yourself allow a minimum of 3 working days for that prescription to be ready. Sign up to this service by calling 01782 633785 or in person when you are already in the pharmacy.
Keele Sports Centre will reopen from Monday 14 September with social distancing measures and new deep cleaning procedures in place. The reopening will be phased with the fitness Centre opening initially, followed by outdoor facilities and fitness classes, and then indoor sports.
The Sports Centre will have a one way system in place, please follow the signage to ensure social distancing guidelines are followed at all times.
Showers will not be available during this time, and only a certain number of lockers will be available for pre-booking. Users should arrive to the Sports Centre ‘exercise ready’ with minimal possessions.
Extensive deep cleaning is in place to ensure all equipment is safe to use, additional blue roll and sanitiser is available for additional cleaning during sessions.
Our water fountains and filling stations will remain closed during this time, please bring your own water to sessions or purchase from reception.
Please have a look at this video playlist for more information, including walk-throughs of how to use our facilities safely.
Session times and capacity levels have been adjusted to allow for the safe arrival and dispersal of users. All sessions, including Athletic Union Club sessions, must be pre-booked in advance.
Social distancing guidelines of 2m apply in all areas, and we request that touching equipment such as goals / nets is kept to an absolute minimum.
The fitness Centre capacity is capped at 20 users at any one time to maintain social distancing. All fitness studio sessions must be pre-booked in advance.
Class locations and timetables have been changed to allow for better air circulation, social distancing and increased cleaning levels.
All classes must be pre-booked in advance – please ensure you arrive on time for classes, do not attend in advance of the allocated class time.
We are not yet in a position to allow indoor sports to operate, this restriction will be removed when safely able to do so.
Please note: if you feel unwell or are experiencing any Covid-19 symptoms, do not come to the Sports Centre under any circumstances. Click here for further guidance if you think you may have coronavirus.
As well as providing risk-assessed, socially-distanced spaces for your in-situ teaching, our University campus is offering a range of spaces that you can opt to use for 'informal learning': the self-directed reading, preparation and online work that contributes to your modules.
As in the list above, this includes bookable study spaces in the library, designated 'informal study' spaces within accommodation blocks, and a range of 'drop-in' spaces across campus (including in Chancellor’s Building) which will be set-up and furnished for socially distanced, independent study. A set of simple guidelines will be in place at the venues to ensure that students use them safely and responsibly.
This means that you will be able to find study spaces to use before and after - or between - your timetabled 'on campus' classes and labs. Some of these spaces may be prioritised for students who do not have adequate study conditions at home, but will be either bookable or open to other students who are on campus that day for teaching or other appointments.
A ‘one in, one out' system may be applied to toilet blocks.
If you need to form a queue for the toilets you should queue down one wall if possible and maintain a 2m distance.
Toilets will be cleaned and inspected regularly.
There are two people allowed in the Post Room at one time. Like all other buildings, you will need to wear a face covering when you enter the building, and only students collecting items will be allowed to enter.
Students will still need to bring their Keele Card when picking up their post, and will be asked to scan the card themselves on our reader. We ask that students visit the Post Room at least once a week to check for letters, but please do not come to the Post Room for parcels until you have received an email to say it has arrived. You must not come to the post room if you are self-isolating - find out more about post delivery here.
Our busiest hours are between 12:00 and 16:30, where you may have to queue.
In accordance with advice from Public Health England and the Post Office, we will not be quarantining post and parcels when they arrive with us.
The University has agreed with First Buses to fund additional buses on the No.25 route during term time, to assist students and staff wishing to travel between Newcastle-under-Lyme bus station to the Keele University campus.
There will be six additional buses running a shuttle service from Newcastle to Keele, three per morning and three per afternoon.
This service will be labelled as the X25, and will run from Newcastle to the campus in the morning terminating at the Holly Cross / Covert bus stop, and then return directly to Newcastle.
In the afternoon, it will commence at the Holly Cross / Covert bus stop and run down to Newcastle and return directly to the campus. The timetable for the No.25 and X25 is can be viewed on the First Bus webpages.
The new X25 service will run from Monday 28th September until Friday 18th December 2020, and a decision on its future funding will be made in November 2020.
Students and staff using the service are asked to:
Wear face coverings when queueing to ensure that buses can be boarded as quickly as possible, and keep these on while on the bus
Either use pre-paid tickets or pay by contactless to again ensure that buses can be boarded as quickly as possible.
Be considerate if queues do occur, given the restrictions that services have in place
If you wish to travel on from Newcastle-under-Lyme then you are advised to catch either the No.25 or the X25 from campus and change at Newcastle bus station
The University will be reviewing bus passenger numbers and seeking passenger feedback on the service to fully understand how users are receiving the additional buses.
Parking permit applications for parking your car at Keele are now open.
A permit will cost £50 in total for the year, which you will pay in three instalments – this is a lower price than last year (it was previously £100) as we recognise that everyone will be spending less time on campus.
We are also pleased to be able to issue a higher number of student permits this year. This is both because we appreciate that it might be more difficult for students to get on and off campus via other modes of transport, and because additional spaces will be available as there will be fewer office-based staff on campus for the foreseeable future at any one time.
A few extra details:
This year it’s an entirely contactless and paperless parking permit system – no paper permits will be issued, and the permit will be matched to your vehicle registration plate number.
All permits are paid in three instalments, and you will need to apply and pay independently for each instalment:
28 Sept to 22 Jan - £20 - applications will open 9am Monday 14 September 2020
25 Jan to 16 Apr 2021 - £20 - applications will open 23 November 2020
19 Apr to 31 August - £10 - applications will open 1 March 2020
For the January and April permit instalments, the information you provide to us in your September application will determine whether you need to complete the full online application process again, or a shortened version of it.
Due to the exceptional and ever-changing circumstances brought about by Covid-19, we will keep you up to date with any changes to the above information.
If you were previously eligible to pay £50 due to placements, please note that you will still pay £50 – we are not able to offer a double discount.
Pay and display car parks:
Alternatively, you can use the pay and display car parks on campus. You will be able to use these by downloading and using the JustPark App to pay (Keele car parks will be visible in the app before the term begins). This will mean you can use the car parks without needing to touch a payment machine, and the in-app maps will show all pay and display areas on campus. Just look out for signs on all pay and display car parks for instructions on how to do this. These machines will still be accepting coins too.
Please note that parking enforcement on campus will begin on Monday 28th September for all permit / pay and display car parks.
The buildings and spaces on Keele campus have been risk-assessed and adapted to be Covid-secure. As with all other public spaces, this means that building layouts and the behaviours of the users within buildings have had to be modified to ensure that individuals can observe social distancing and other Covid-secure measures.
As a visitor to the campus, this webpage will provide you with an overview of the measures we have taken.
Find out about how can report a concern, and how we will respond to it, on this web page.