Is Belfast a 'safe' city to live in?

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SNR
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It might sound a strange question but when I told my dad that I was considering Queen's, he told me that it was a worse place to live than somewhere like London or Nottingham. According to him, kneecapping isn't uncommon and it has the potential "to kick off at any time" with the IRA.

Obviously this may sound very narrow minded and such, but my dad is usually quite accurate when it comes to things such as crime rates and the like (since he's part of a football crew, he's usually quite familiar with knowing how rough places are without been spoon fed it from the news) so I was just wondering what people's experiences were with Belfast and Northern Ireland.
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medbh4805
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Lol. http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/ne...-15033392.html

Unless you go out of your way to get involved in sectarian violence it is not anything more than an annoyance/inconvenience (and embarrassment) for most people. You should however acquaint yourself with symbolism of both 'sides', the geography of Belfast (you don't want to walk into the wrong area wearing a celtic top for example) and the history of NI as it's something you need to be sensitive if you don't want to inadvertently offend the other students at QUB (the overwhelming majority of whom are will be from NI).

Football has a long history of being associated with violence in NI, because support for particular teams in NI and Scotland is drawn up on sectarian lines. The attitudes and behaviour of football supporters is not representative of NI as a whole. Students in general will be quite liberal and openminded (exceptions ofc) in contrast to other demographics.

unless you're planning on dealing drugs I don't think you're at risk of being kneecapped.
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Jack93o
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better than mogadishu, but I'd still take london or nottingham over it any day
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Dumdedoobie
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I went to both Primary school and Secondary school in Belfast. Me, as well as most of my friends, have never been in physical fights. As said above, you have to be slightly careful about what you wear in certain areas, etc. However, everybody I know in England (where I live at the minute) that has visited Belfast has ranted and raved about how everybody was extremely friendly and welcoming. Queens is a lovely, and well thought of university.
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SNR
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(Original post by medbh4805)
unless you're planning on dealing drugs I don't think you're at risk of being kneecapped.
Damn, look's like I'm going to have to find another way of funding my rent whilst I'm there. :innocent:

I'm not much of a football fan, I go to York and Leeds matches semi-regularly but I don't advocate it that much. It's more any potential anti-English problems I might have, though I don't doubt that for the most part it's fine. Just in case I've got a plan to lie and say that I have Irish parents who moved (might work since I've got the 'Irishest' of names ) and see whether I'm accepted or not.
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Fusion
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Northern Ireland is the second safest country after Japan
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medbh4805
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(Original post by SNR)
Damn, look's like I'm going to have to find another way of funding my rent whilst I'm there. :innocent:

I'm not much of a football fan, I go to York and Leeds matches semi-regularly but I don't advocate it that much. It's more any potential anti-English problems I might have, though I don't doubt that for the most part it's fine. Just in case I've got a plan to lie and say that I have Irish parents who moved (might work since I've got the 'Irishest' of names ) and see whether I'm accepted or not.
There are lots of English people in NI, and most NI people have family living there (like me ). There were even English people in the IRA (lol all you will, it's actually true). You might get some ****ging but I don't imagine any serious abuse unless you're hanging out in dodgy bars on the Falls Road. That said I myself have encountered English people in said dodgy bars before and no one seemed to care , but even so I would exercise caution about where you go and who you go with (like any city really)
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MAINE.
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(Original post by Arirang)
Where you'll be living you'll probably be near the city centre (in second year anyway) and seriously, 99% of any violence that does occur, does not happen in the centre or around it
O Rly?

http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/nicrimemap/

Because this map of crime rates in NI, seems to suggest otherwise (zoom in on Belfast).

(Original post by medbh4805)
I don't imagine any serious abuse unless you're hanging out in dodgy bars on the Falls Road.
Falls Road...that's near the centre right.

Generally speaking what do you think people's attitudes are towards multiculturalism? I have heard there is a lot of racism towards Asians, and Eastern Europeans especially after alot of those countries joined the EU around 2006 and immigrated to NI.

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/ja...thern-ireland/

I mean if you go a third of the way down this article and start reading it describe NI as the "race hate capital of Europe". Not exactly invoking much confidence for people thinking of moving there.
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aimccartney
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Visited the weekend after the 12th July..... Still had the bonfires smouldering and got my friend who is local to deliberately take me to some of these "worse" areas.... Found it same as any other city really, don't be stupid and use your common sense and you'll be fine.
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Angury
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(Original post by MAINE.)
Generally speaking what do you think people's attitudes are towards multiculturalism? I have heard there is a lot of racism towards Asians, and Eastern Europeans especially after alot of those countries joined the EU around 2006 and immigrated to NI.

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/ja...thern-ireland/

I mean if you go a third of the way down this article and start reading it describe NI as the "race hate capital of Europe". Not exactly invoking much confidence for people thinking of moving there.
I am a British Asian who went to primary and secondary school in Northern Ireland. My secondary school was very close to the city centre, and I spent a lot of my time in Belfast. My parents and I have never experienced any racism while living in Northern Ireland for eleven years, and I've found people to be very friendly. Whilst I was growing up in NI, I never really saw many Asians, and a lot of my friends and their families knew very little about other cultures, but I never found this to be a problem either. They usually showed a lot of interest in my culture, and would sometimes ask me questions about it, but no one ever felt uncomfortable, never mind any feelings of hatred or racism.
This is, of course, only my (and my family's) experience, but even at school, none of my friends had heard of any hate crimes going on, and racism was virtually unknown in my school.

I've always felt safe walking through the city centre, even late at night with a few other girls or by myself. Belfast is a lovely city to live in, the locals are very friendly and I have found that many will go out of their way to help you out if you need it. At my university, a lot of people seem to have this opinion that NI is a very dangerous place to live in, and tend to imagine my childhood as running back from school with bombs following my footsteps or something.. it's taken a long time for me to convince people here that NI is actually a wonderful place to live in, but the riots haven't really helped much either.
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Clare~Bear
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There are worse parts than others and parts where things kick off more often than others.

But in general this question is similar to asking if the middle east is a safe place to go on holiday.
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p1nkang3l
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Every country has its problems. Like another poster said, just familiarise yourself with the history and what areas are where. However these are usually marked out by flags flying on lamp posts, even then it's not necessarily reflective of the area as they tend to be hung out in mixed areas.

The majority of people in Belfast welcome multiculturalism and peace despite what the media reports at times.

I attend a multicultural breakfast club with my toddler and it has Chinese, French, Romanian, Turkish, English, Slovakian and Polish parents and children that attend.

Also. I'm in a mixed marriage (Protestant and Catholic) and have never had any issues and don't expect too. I don't live in a mixed area either.

I have made a really good friend who is Chinese and she lives not far from me and both our daughters attend playgroup together and play alongside one either.

It is a great place and is what you make of it. You'll most probably find that the people here will keep you right on what's what of you do decide to study and live here.
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DK_Tipp
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I'm from the Republic of Ireland but I moved up to Belfast to go to university.

There are obviously still political issues and the scars from 30 odd years of violence but I'll say this for Belfast people as a whole- they are among the most welcoming and friendly people I have met. The city feels pretty safe, obviously like any city be it London, Nottingham, Dublin or wherever, there's violent crime and you need to take precautions but as to whether there's a bit of an atmosphere or aggression towards outsiders than no, absolutely not.

I just hope this flag issue reaches a conclusion...
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David Healy is God
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Live and work in Belfast and feel entirely safe.


This was posted from The Student Room's iPhone/iPad App
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bikemoon
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Yes it is. I grew up in Northern Ireland and lived in different places in or around Belfast until I was eighteen. For the next twenty years I lived in England: Petersfield; Plymouth; Exeter; Taunton. I've now moved back to my home town of Bangor. Belfast is as safe as any UK city - if not safer. Due to our problems in Northern Ireland, it will be difficult for anyone who has not lived there to understand that, but it's true I can assure you! Mostly, I've found that many people on the mainland hold fairly archaic views of Northern Ireland which belong in the 1970s or 80s. There are plenty of people from other nations here who do not hold such views, only positive ones. Sometimes I think people in mainland Britain wish to keep Northern Ireland as a backwater, maintaining prejudiced views that it is violent and unsafe, but that's fine as far as I'm concerned; that suits me just fine - our population will stay low, our pace of life slightly slower than the mainland. Thank you - keep up the negative views!
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UnknownError
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Belfast is probably the safest big city in the uk except the east your exceptionally safe at most times


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bikemoon
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yes indeed, the gentleman here is absolutely right in saying this
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Gillybop
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Just don't be walking around with Rangers or Celtic regalia on and you'll 'be grand' as they say.
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username2769500
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Belfast is great you will be fine. I don't make friends with people who wear Celtic or Rangers tops.
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JohnBellHouseBelfast
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Hi there,

Hope you don't mind us jumping in here. If your looking for safe and modern accommodation in Belfast then you could take a look at John Bell House.

All rooms are en suite, with comfy small double beds, storage space, and a shared kitchen and living area for each student apartment. Plus, we also have some en suite studios available too! We also have a great Social Space as well a great outdoor space in our courtyard. Our location is perfect too – the main campuses for Queens University and University of Ulster Belfast Campus, plus the city centre are all within walking distance.

Check out our facebook page over at www.facebook.com/johnbellhousebelfast to see the latest events and photos or contact us on 02895901683

Anna
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