July 30 2014 Latest news:
by Alisha Rouse
Monday, June 16, 2014
A new report has named Islington as one of the capital’s burglary hotspots – with more than three times the average number of break-ins.
Data from the past year shows there were 1,367 residential and 1,159 non-residential burglaries, a 9.6 per cent increase on the previous 12 months.
The figures come despite soaring house prices making Islington 34pc pricier than the average London rent.
But Islington Council’s executive member for community safety, Cllr Paul Convery, argued that “it’s still a pretty safe borough”.
He said: “I think you’ve got to remember that this isn’t just residential burglaries, this is all sorts of thefts.
“Bear in mind we have the highest number of jobs and businesses outside the City.
“Police, to their credit, are doing a series of spot checks to see how far they can get into a building without anyone noticing – and they get quite a long way. The businesses in Islington are quite easy going, but they’re getting savvy.”
Mr Convery added that the council had recently had a “moment of clarity” and realised “we need to focus not on the crimes, but on the criminals”, as small groups of criminals carry out “numerous different offences, from drugs to theft”.
While non-residential burglaries did see an increase on last year by 8.8pc, thefts from residential properties have seen a bigger increase of 10.2pc.
A spokesman for Rentonomy, which compiled the study, said: “We’ve chosen to single out burglary for two reasons. Firstly, if we just looked at all crime there is a massive concentration in central areas like Westminster and the City where raucous Saturday night behaviour has a big impact.
“Secondly, we wanted to look at a crime that specifically affects renters and burglary certainly does.
“When it comes to choosing an area to live in London, one of the most important considerations is safety.”
The average weekly rent for a two-bedroom flat in Islington is £425, which is 34pc higher than the capital’s average price.
The safest area, with the least burglaries was East Molesey in south-west London, near Hampton Court.