Wellbeing support this winter

Find out how to access support should you need it over the winter break

Wherever you are based, we understand that you may need some advice and support. This page lists the support available to all students that you can access remotely.

Student wellbeing and mental health support 

Throughout January, you can access a 24/7 out of hours mental health support line sponsored by the School via Spectrum.Life. All calls are answered by clinically trained counsellors or psychotherapists. You can talk to them about anything, including stress, anxiety, low mood, financial worries, loss and grief, relationship problems, and substance abuse issues. 

Contacting Spectrum.Life out of hours support

Please note Spectrum Life will ask for some basic details to ensure you're eligible to use the service. All services provided through Spectrum.Life are done so in total confidence. The identity of individuals and personal details will always be protected.

Getting support over the winter break - key services

Financial support 

If you do not have a computer at home or are experiencing unforeseen financial difficulties, you can apply to the LSESU Hardship Fund (means-tested).

LSE's Financial Support Office can also assist students with financial difficulties due to coronavirus.

Accessing medical care 

Please check with your General Practitioner (GP) surgery directly for opening hours. 

If you need to access medical care, visit the NHS services webpage to find local GP, Urgent Care, Hospital and Dentist provision. 

Emergencies on campus 

If you experience an emergency on campus, Security maintain a reduced service throughout the School closure period. They can be contacted by telephone: 020 7955 6555 or internal extension 666. 

Contact the UK Emergency Services (Fire / Police / Ambulance / Lifeboats) by dialling 999 from any telephone. Non-emergency medical advice can be sought by dialling 111 and the police non-emergency number is 101. 

For information about what to do in a mental health emergency, visit the Student Counselling Service's Emergencies / feeling suicidal webpage

If you are staying in an LSE-owned hall of residence over the Christmas break, there will be staff from the Warden's team on site throughout. You can contact them in the same way as you do during term time. 

Further information

Find additional information about LSE and London over the winter break in the sections below.

Community activities for students during the winter break

Whether you're staying in London or travelling home this winter, there are plenty of opportunities to meet others, recharge and explore the city. Visit our winter break student activities page to get involved.

You can also find out about any activities happening in your Halls by followng them on the Student Hub and Facebook.

Student Services opening hours

The SSC counter closes at 1pm on Friday 11 December and reopens at 10am on Monday 4 January. Please also note that any queries submitted via the Student Services online enquiry form during the LSE Christmas closure (19 December to 3 January) will not be picked up until 4 January and there will not be any live chat provision during this period. 

The Library, IT and Catering

IT resources and support

Visit the DTS webpage for information about Student Help Desk opening hours and how to access help during the School closure period.

Catering

Visit the catering outlets webpage to find out when LSE catering outlets will be open during the Christmas vacation.

Library

Visit the Library opening hours webpage for information about when the library will be open during the Christmas vacation.

What's open in London on the Christmas Bank Holidays

Christmas Day

Christmas Day is a national holiday in the UK and almost all shops and attractions will be closed. This includes most supermarkets, so you're advised to plan your shopping in advance. Some restaurants will open, although many will require advance booking and will be more expensive than usual with set menus starting at around £65 per person.

Public transport does not operate on Christmas day, although Cycle Hire bikes are available. There will also be a reduced service on Christmas Eve and Boxing Day (the days immediately before and after Christmas Day) so check with TfL before you plan to travel.

The streets of London are quiet on Christmas Day, so you could take this opportunity to wrap up warm and hire a bike or take a walk around the city in relative peace. 

Boxing Day

Boxing Day is the UK's name for the day after Christmas. It was traditionally a day when employers gave gifts to their employees, but it's now a day when the post-Christmas retail sales begin. Oxford Street and other shopping centres are likely to be filled with bargain-hunters and can get very busy. As Boxing Day falls on a weekend this year, the Bank Holiday will take place on Monday 28 December - shops and services may be shut or operating reduce hours.

New Year's Eve and New Year's Day

New Year's Eve is one of the biggest celebrations in London. There are usually firework displays in central London but these have been cancelled this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

New Year's Day is also a Bank Holiday, meaning shops and services may be shut or operating reduced hours.

Traveling in London over the Christmas period

Check with TfL before you travel for information about changes and reduced services over Christmas and New Year. There is no special overnight or free travel for this New Year.

Travelling over the winter break

There are likely to be restrictions in place for travel over the winter break. Please read the latest government guidance and follow their recommendations. You may also like to read the information and guidance in the 'Travelling over winter break' section on our FAQs page, and visit TFL's Christmas and New Year Travel page for more information.

Visa information for travelling overseas

If you are planning to travel outside the UK, it is a good idea to take photocopies of your passport, visa and a stamped copy of your Certificate of Registration with you when you travel.  

International students are also strongly advised to review the ISVAT information on travelling during your studies.

You should always check to see if you need a visa for the country you are travelling to and review visa application instructions carefully. The ISVAT webpage provides guidance on Schengen visas for travel in Europe. You can also find further information on the UK Council for International Student Affairs website. You will need a letter from LSE, so be sure to plan ahead, because the Student Services Centre operates reduced opening hours in December and is closed for the Christmas closure.

Keep your passport and visa safe

If you have a Biometric Residence Permit (BRP), this is your visa and you should carry it with you while you travel to prove your entitlement to return to the UK. Please keep it as safe as you do your passport and don’t risk travelling without it.

If your passport/visa is lost or stolen whilst travelling, please read the information online and contact the International Student Visa Advice Team for advice if required.

Travel insurance

Don’t forget to arrange travel insurance as your NHS cover will not apply outside the UK. You should be careful to choose insurance which is suitable for international students. If it is only suitable for permanent UK residents, you will not be able to make a claim if anything happens.

Emergencies abroad

In case of emergency while travelling, please contact your Embassy in the country you are travelling in.

The International Student Visa Advice Team can also be contacted using their online query form.

January assessments

January assessment dates

January assessments will take place from Monday 11 January - Friday 15 January 2021 inclusive.

Visit the exams timetable webpage for further information.

Assessments guidance

Visit the assessment FAQs and assessments webpage for everything you need to know about sitting January assessments. 

Advice during the holiday

The Student Services Centre is open outside of term time, however it will be closed from Monday 21 December - Friday 1 January (inclusive) while the School is closed for Christmas.

Most questions will be answered on the following webpages:

Emails and telephone calls will not be answered while the Student Services Centre is closed. We will do our best to respond to them as quickly as possible when we reopen on Monday 4 January 2021.

 

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