Specialised support services

Did you know?

The specialist support we provide range from key holding and security training through to CCTV recording and storage and a comprehensive alarm response service. These services are chargeable and may be available to colleges. 

For more information about the details and cost of our services, please view our Service Definition Catalogue.


Find out about our specialised support

Photo of a man wearing Security Services hi-vis jacket looking at a cabinet full of many different keys and access cards

We provide a comprehensive response service out of normal working hours (Monday to Friday 17.00 to 8.30, weekends and public holidays).

This gives reassurance that all issues will be dealt with appropriately to a satisfactory conclusion on behalf of the department. 

This service includes:

Key management

  • We ensure all building access keys/cards are registered in our secure key management systems. These are located at our Old Observatory and Old Road Campus centres.
  • Access to building keys is strictly controlled with biometric access limited to authorised security personnel.

Fire alarm response

If an alarm is activated out of normal working hours (Monday to Friday 17.00 to 8.30, weekends and public holidays), we call the Fire Service and send a patrol to the scene to liaise with the Fire Service and ensure the premises have been evacuated.

We work closely with the Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue Service, Chief Fire Officers’ Association and the University Safety Office and operate in accordance with the University Fire Safety Policy Statement S2/05.

Intruder alarm response

If an alarm is activated out of normal working hours (Monday to Friday 17.00 to 8.30, weekends and public holidays), we send a patrol to the scene to investigate the cause, if necessary.

If we believe a crime has been committed we will call the police. We will also contact the department’s nominated emergency contact, who may need to attend the premises to provide details of any stolen or damaged property.

Plant, environmental and building systems alarm response

Security Services is able to provide, by prior agreement with the department, an appropriate response to specialist alarms. This agreement takes into consideration all safety regulations and practices for the type of system.

Personal attack alarm response

Once an identified personal attack alarm is activated, we immediately send a patrol to the premises, investigate the reason for activation and take any necessary remedial action. We also arrange for assistance and support to be provided when necessary.

Lift alarm response

When a lift alarm is activated, we send a patrol to the scene to reassure the person trapped. The University contracted lift maintenance company is called to attend, and the department is also informed. If necessary, we also call in the Fire and Rescue service for assistance.


We carry out a daily un-lock of a building and deactivate any intruder alarm systems at the agreed time to suit the department’s working hours.


We carry out a daily lock-up of a building in accordance with the department’s instructions. A uniformed patrol completes a full internal security check of the building to ensure all personnel have left. The patrol will also:

  • set any intruder alarm systems and secure the building
  • ensure the building lock-up time takes place as close to the agreed time as possible to suit the department’s working hours

Any security related matters noted will be recorded on the Security Services Incident Management System and a detailed incident report sent to the departments.

We provide an authorised lock-out/in service to members of staff and students locked out of, or inside, their place of work or accommodation.

Patrols attend the property outside normal working hours (Monday to Friday 17.00 to 8.30, weekends and public holidays). They will find out the reason for the person being locked out or in, confirm they are authorised to enter the property, and make reasonable identity checks.

If necessary, the patrol will contact the department’s emergency contact to confirm identity and obtain authorisation. We may also need to refuse access if the person does not have out of hour’s access permission or their identity cannot be confirmed. If the individual needs to collect belongings, the patrol will escort them into and out of the property.

All lock-out and lock-in incidents are recorded and a report is sent to the department. This then helps the department with any necessary preventative or corrective action.

Security Services manage the Estates Services radio scheme.

As the OFCOM licence holder, we can provide access to a high-quality, encrypted radio communications network offering:

  • improved staff safety and security, including lone worker monitoring
  • direct emergency contact with the security services control room
  • one-to-one private communications and individual talk groups

We also provide training for users and facilitate remote system upgrades, repairs and maintenance with its external service provider. Additional functions include text messaging, alarm activation notification and public address broadcasting.

Photo of a group of people in academic dress posing outside of the Sheldonian as part of Encaenia 2019

The annual Encaenia ceremony is one of the events where we provide specialist support

Security Services has extensive experience of supporting University and college VIP visits and ceremonial events.

We support event organisers with:

  • event planning
  • threat and risk assessment
  • uniformed security staffing
  • event access control management
  • liaison with Police and other emergency services
  • contingency planning and response

Our dedicated training and development officer can provide:

  • bespoke security and customer service training for key personnel
  • end-user and trainer training on CCTV and radio schemes
  • support with developing and testing local crisis management and response plans
  • structured incident de-briefings

For further information, please contact us on +44 (0)1865 2 72944 or email securityservices.updates@admin.ox.ac.uk

Service Definition Catalogue



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