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Distinguished academic educates officers on CPTED

A distinguished academic has been working with the Police Crime Prevention Academy in the delivery of an accredited specialist crime prevention qualification for West Yorkshire Police staff.

Professor Rachel Armitage, Professor of Criminology within the School of Human and Health Sciences at the University of Huddersfield and a leading expert on the subject of Crime Prevention through Environmental Design (CPTED), shared her expertise with West Yorkshire Police delegates undertaking the Level 4 Certificate in Crime Prevention for Practitioners qualification delivered by the Academy.

Professor Armitage has conducted research on the subject of CPTED for over 20 years, evaluating the effectiveness of the Secured by Design (SBD) award scheme, investigating the links between housing design and crime risk, exploring the tensions and synergies between security and sustainability and studying international approaches to preventing crime through design. Her work has been referenced in local, national and international planning policy and guidance, and she aims to ensure that consideration for crime prevention is on the agenda of all agencies involved in planning and developing the built environment.

Rachel Armitage

Professor Armitage has published extensively on the subject of designing out crime, including a sole authored book: Crime Prevention through Housing Design (2013) published by Palgrave Macmillan, and edited collections: Rebuilding Crime Prevention through Environmental Design (2019) published by Routledge, and Retail Crime – International Evidence and Prevention (2018) published by Palgrave Macmillan. She is on the Editorial Board of several journals including: Security Journal (Book Reviews Editor), the European Journal on Criminal Policy and Research, Crime Prevention and Community Safety and Frontiers in Psychology, Forensic and Legal Psychology.

More recently, Professor Armitage has conducted several projects exploring the role of design in counterterrorism at critical infrastructure sites, in particular, multi-modal passenger terminals. She is currently working closely with major supermarket chains (in the UK) and local police forces to establish the extent to which design changes can impact upon shoplifters’ perceptions of risk.

Professor Armitage said, “I was thrilled to be invited to assist in the delivery of this crime prevention qualification, and helping practitioners understand the concept and application of CPTED is one of the most rewarding elements of my job. Those attending the course were extremely engaged and really took to the idea of how design can influence offender decision making, and how to ‘think offender’ when considering the environment around them.

“Enabling these practitioners to take this knowledge back to their communities is a real privilege and I look forward to being involved in any future delivery of these courses”.

Speaking on behalf of the Police Crime Prevention Academy (PCPA), the Head of Academy Guy Collyer said, “Facilitating the Level 4 crime prevention qualification for West Yorkshire Police provided a great opportunity for the Academy to access the expertise of Professor Armitage on behalf of the delegates. Her knowledge of, and communication about CPTED, brought it to life for the delegates who can then apply this knowledge in the classroom based exercise and in their own working environments for the benefit of local communities.”

West Yorkshire Police is the fourth largest force in England and Wales by number of officers, with 5,671 officers serving approximately 2.2 million people living in one of the five metropolitan districts of Bradford, Calderdale, Kirklees, Leeds and Wakefield.

The Level 4 Crime Prevention for Practitioners qualification is aimed at those who will be providing specialist advice within their role, and it provides a stepping stone to the accredited designing out crime qualification.

The Academy is part of Police Crime Prevention Initiatives, the police owned, non-profit, organisation that works on behalf of the Police Service throughout the UK to deliver a wide range of crime prevention and police demand reduction initiatives.

The Academy maintains close working links with the National Police Chiefs’ Council, as well as senior police officers from across the UK, and is the established supplier to the police service for crime prevention learning & development.

The Academy is an established provider of police training offering a local delivery option that significantly reduces costs, as well as providing the flexibility to dovetail content into Continued Professional Development (CPD) and to reflect local issues.

The Academy also delivers a number of qualifications to the private sector, working closely with local authorities and relevant specialists such as architects and planners, and offers a number of distance learning qualifications which can be accessed without the need to be away from home or work. The Academy pride itself in keeping the quality of qualifications at a premium and the costs at a minimum.

The Academy is an approved centre for the awarding body ProQual, and has the exclusive link with the Secured by Design initiative.

Further information about the range of qualifications offered by the Academy, can be obtained by visiting or emailing