42 per cent of Leeds students say they have had Covid since September 2020

20 per cent of students chose not to follow self-isolation guidelines


Nearly 20 per cent of Leeds students have not followed self-isolation guidelines and 42 per cent of students have had Covid since the start of the academic year, according to a Leeds Tab survey of 1,000 people.

This has led to Hyde Park, one of Leeds’ most popular student areas, having the highest rate of coronavirus in the country, at an astonishing 1,570.8 per 100,000 people.

The Leeds Tab also spoke to a number of students in the area, who are unsurprised with this figure, providing insights that illegal house parties and not sticking to self-isolation have led to the massive spike.

The survey also revealed that only 33 per cent of Leeds students are aware that Headingley, Hyde Park, Little London and Woodhouse combined have one of the worst rates of coronavirus in the UK.

Our Survey found:

42 per cent have had Covid-19 since arriving at University. 

61 per cent who answered know someone isolating with Covid-19 currently. Over 500 students told us they know someone who is currently isolating with Covid-19.

Nearly 20 per cent of Leeds students haven’t followed the self-isolation guidelines. 

28 per cent of those surveyed wouldn’t isolate if Test & Trace told them to. One student indicated that the app had been riddled with problems, “sending me loads of random notifications often at 2am or on weeks where I hadn’t gone anywhere.”

9 per cent of Leeds students have had Covid-19 during May or June. 78 students said they tested positive for the virus in May or June alone, with one student having it three times since coming to university in September.

33 per cent of Leeds students are aware Hyde Park has one of the highest Covid-19 rates. 

The great majority of students are unsurprised.

Almost all Leeds students would get tested if they had symptoms. With Lateral Flow Tests being incredibly easy to get ahold of now (you can order them next-day to your address via the gov.uk website), students reported they have tested more if they do get simple symptoms like a cough or cold, and then made a judgement based on the test result.

Almost all would get the Covid-19 vaccine if offered. 96 per cent said they would get the vaccine, certainly providing a large buffer for coronavirus around Leeds and in the student areas of Hyde Park, Burley and Headingley.

Leeds students give their verdict

The Tab Leeds spoke to two Leeds students about the rising rates in Leeds, student attitudes towards the pandemic and vaccinations.

Alex Goksaran, first year UoL Geophysics student

Alex, a first year Geophysics student

Alex revealed: “I’ve been told to isolate almost a week after I’ve been to a place where I may have had contact,” and “received no notification when I’ve been in a place with somebody who soon after did get Covid.”

She believes that it is “more effective to test frequently and isolate if you know you’ve been in contact, not if you might have.”

Regarding vaccinations, Alex felt “18-30 year olds should have been the priority to keep the spread down because generally they’re the age group that do the most moving round.”

When asked about students’ attitudes about Covid being reflective of the higher Covid rates in Hyde Park, she agreed but said “most students I know are struggling and are becoming increasingly angry that we’ve been blamed since the beginning.”

Emma Roids, 23, Leeds Trinity graduate and Leeds resident

Emma Roids, LTU graduate and Leeds resident

Emma suggested as students move home, they would be more careful about passing the virus as “they witness the direct impacts it can have in those older and more vulnerable.”

After living in Leeds for over five years, she isn’t surprised that Hyde Park has the highest rate of coronavirus in the country, as it feels like “you’re being summoned amongst a mosh pit at Woodhouse Moor.”

Emma is sympathetic of students, but understands that their attitudes are related to the higher rates of Covid in Hyde Park, telling The Leeds Tab that “people are rebellious, most of which are students,” and that she feels we are stuck in a cycle of “lockdown loneliness, wanting to drink, becoming affectionate and socially starved and then becoming careless.”

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Cover Image credit, gov.uk.

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