Residents and visitors to Bradford can now use a free app to feel safer when walking around the city centre.
The Walksafe app gives people power to be in control of their own safety by following safer routes home, sharing their location and arrival times with family and friends, and automatic alerts for people who don’t reach their destination.
The WalkSafe+ app also shows the location of 30 safe spaces as well as the live location of the city’s Street Angels and evening and night marshalls.
Jonny Noble, manager of Bradford BID said: “We know that Bradford’s night-time economy has so much to offer, and we also know public safety is a concern for those coming into the city centre in the evening.
“The launch of the WalkSafe app is just one of the long line of actions and changes we are doing with Bradford at Night and our members to make Bradford centre a thriving, safe space for people to enjoy.”
Elizabeth Murphy, manager of Bradford at Night added: “We have over 30 vendors, including bars, pubs and hotels identified on the city centre map that have really got behind this initiative.
"These are designated ‘safe spaces’ that have undergone additional training and support. Any member of the public can go into one of those venues if they ever feel unsafe and speak to a member of staff who has been trained to help.”
The app’s team have been updating the technology based on initial feedback from pubs, bars, and other businesses.
Other features of the WalkSafe app include information about crimes that happened around them on their route and the SOS button to alert a user’s friends about the danger.
It originally launched in January after the Business Improvement District (BID) and Bradford at Night partnered with WalkSafe’s creators.
The app has been funded with the support of the Safer Streets Fund, led by the Mayor of West Yorkshire Tracy Brabin, which aims to tackle violence against women and girls.
Alison Lowe OBE, West Yorkshire Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime and a patron of Bradford at Night, was among those at the app’s launch.
WalkSafe was founded by 34-year-old Emma Kay, a daughter of a Metropolitan Police officer who has experienced catcalling, following, groping and flashing whilst out and about.
“I’m thrilled that Bradford is the first ever WalkSafe city in the world,” she said.
“My passion for creating the app stems from empowering people with something they can control and use for their own safety.
"Together with the Bradford BID team, Bradford at Night and the vendors, we believe our partnership will provide the tools to keep the town a safe and welcoming city for all.”
The app is available now to download for android and apple devices.