Posted: August 29th, 2012 Author: Dan Lewis 1 Comment »
We now have 19 months of data on UKCrimeStats.
For all that, we’ve had a difficult month here on UKCrimeStats. For the third time in our brief history, the site was brought down by crime – hackers emanating from China-based servers – and we had some trouble recovering data. This time I didn’t report the crime to the Police – which although it happened at our datacentre (they don’t report hacking attacks) would presumably have been categorised as a crime with no location. So we apologise for the interruption of service which was for about 8 days. All paying members have received a free month’s extension for this inconvenience. Secondly, our neighbourhood data has been incorrectly displayed and was only just corrected. The issue was that we had overstated crime at the neighbourhood level for April and May by double-counting the other crime category. This has now been fixed and we are confident the data is now correct. Our remaining fix is for the London Assembly data for the underlying constituencies and the total for the London Assembly Area. Please disregard this data – the problem again is with the “Other” Crime data which received 5 new categories late last year. This will be fixed within the week if not sooner.
Here on UKCrimeStats, when we make mistakes we won’t hide it from you – that’s the whole principle of open data and particularly open crime data. So please support our efforts by joining today – it’s only £9.99 a month. And because we listen to what you say, we have a number of exciting new developments coming through very shortly.
Posted: March 26th, 2012 Author: Dan Lewis 1 Comment »
Last Saturday morning I was invited to speak at a workshop entitled “Let’s work out a Police & Crime Plan for North Wales” organised by Richard Hibbs, the Independent Candidate for North Wales – details of the occasion are here. It was an excellent event, lots of different and engaging viewpoints – plurality in other words, which is what democracy is all about. And last but not least, it was in Llandudno, a true jewel of a town in North Wales. Much as I liked Richard, here at UKCrimeStats, as a rule, we don’t take sides behind any candidate as this would be a conflict of interest. We only look at the data and work hard to give it context and meaning over time periods, different boundaries etc. to the general populace.
Anyway, I thought you may like to see my presentation;
here is the powerpoint
here is the underlying data in two spreadsheets – North Wales by Neighbourhood and North Wales compared to all Police Forces. If you want to routinely pick up this level of data from UKCrimStats – just subscribe from £9.99 a month.
I’m expecting to do quite a lot of these presentations over the next few months, so don’t hesitate to get in touch if you’d like an outside independent voice to tell you what your local crime data says. We are just starting now to work more with Local Authorities, Local Media and Insurance Companies who value our independence and flourishing capabilities.
For all that, once again we found an open and shut case of why we need independent analysis by third parties of the crime data, because we alone seem to spot the errors and have a vested interest in making sure they are cleaned up. Take a look at the neighbourhood boundary of Mostyn in Llandudno which I’ve taken from Police.uk;
a good 60% of Mostyn’s neighbourhood boundary was in the sea – an incredibly bad error !
This is not something we can fix ourselves, we don’t know where the boundary should be. But as we use Police.uk data – and in this case, neighbourhood kml files we have no choice but to replicate it – here is our neighbourhood page for Mostyn. I’ve also written this up on our forum where I direct the NPIA and the Home Office to get the details on the errors from.
So hopefully this will get fixed soon. Llandudno deserves better !
Posted: November 6th, 2011 Author: Dan Lewis 1 Comment »
Ok, we’ve done it. It took longer than usual because we had new 5 new crime types to build into the database. These are;
- Criminal Damage and Arson
- Public Disorder and Weapons
As you’ll see from our main chart below, we have added these under the Other category (from whence they came) so you can keep track going backwards. Going forwards, when we have more than 1 month of data, we will split them out and on the reports section too. See our national page here where we have already started doing this.
We have also updated constituency populations to mid-2010 estimates using the latest data released by the Office for National Statistics. IMHO, Constituencies are a much better guide than neighbourhoods to comparing crime in different areas because they generally have similar and larger population samples, the boundaries don’t change (well, not much – every 4-5 years !) and the population data is far more up to date and precisely sourced. I suspect a lot of the neighbourhood population data – where Police Forces have included it and still too many haven’t – may date from as early as the 2001 census. And as I’m sure you appreciate, this is quite a different country today to then. How many people do you think live in the same place they did 10 years ago?
Comments and suggestions always welcome – just email me, Dan Lewis, on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Posted: October 6th, 2011 Author: Dan Lewis No Comments »
Following on from our post yesterday, we had a look at the Guardian data on the riots and thought we’d try uploading it – here is our new Riots page. And because we are able to pinpoint which neighbourhood these events occurred in, we can very quickly see that the impact on the neighbourhood crime figures for August is negligible.
Like in Tottenham Hale for example where it actually started with the shooting of Mark Duggan and Tottenham Green where a lot of shops were first looted later that evening.
What this shows is that the Home Office Rules for recording crime by mass groups is deeply flawed and needs to be looked at again. As it stands, the data suggests that these were ordinary August months which of course they were not.
Our Riots page is here.
Posted: August 7th, 2011 Author: Dan Lewis No Comments »
I’ve just run a quick search on UKCrimeStats and thought I’d post up these links in light of the distressing events from last night in Tottenham not least 49 fires started by rioters.
Here is a link to crime in the Tottenham Constituency, of which David Lammy is MP and is in the worst 5% for violent crimes between December 2010 and June 2011 (25 out of 573).
In June 2011, the neighbourhoods Tottenham Green (123 out of 156) and Tottenham Hale (103 out of 142) compare quite well with other neighbourhoods within 5 miles.
Posted: August 5th, 2011 Author: Dan Lewis No Comments »
I was just reading this article which was unusual because it was a detailed monthly update on crime in a specific neighbourhood – Thame. Thame falls under the jurisdiction of Thames Valley Police. I’m sure in the years to come we will see many more of these online reports of what’s going on and this is much to be welcomed – so well done Thame Neighbourhood Policing Team.
Anyway, right at the end, it said log on to police.uk but it didn’t say log on to UKCrimeStats !
Well here are some good reasons why you should log on to UKCrimeStats as well.
And by way of comparative example, here’s police.uk’s page for Thame and here is ours from UKCrimeStats.
1. UKCrimeStats displays the population of Thame – 11,072
2. UKCrimeStats shows the Neighbourhood Crime League table (within 5 miles) adjusted for population (as crime rate) and displaying the different totals for each type and ASB. This means we can show a ranking or you can sort by different types using the online pivot table.
3. UKCrimeStats has easy to understand charts and pie charts tracking monthly data per neighbourhood since December 2010 (because not everyone likes numbers and some much prefer pictures)
4. UKCrimeStats has a table with monthly totals for each crime and ASB type – you do not have to change page to see all of them
5. On UKCrimeStats, if you click on a crime/ASB pin you can not only give information to the local Neighbourhood Team, you can pass on information to Crimestoppers or tweet it because each crime/ASB event has a unique url, like this one here.
6. When you click on that unique url – in this case a vehicle crime, you will also see a table listing all the vehicle crimes since December 2010 within 5 miles of that specific location. Not all crime is local, criminals certainly don’t respect administrative borders but fear of crime is local and people want to get an idea of risk in their area. Saying a given neighbourhood across England and Wales falls under average, as Police.uk does, isn’t really that useful.
7. And last but not least, you can advertise by Neighbourhood so that your ads appear when anyone selects a specific neighbourhood, a crime page in that area or a postcode within it. Read all about how to do it here – really very easy and inexpensive, much cheaper than local newspapers. And get registered here – we also offer 50% discounts for Appeals for information from the victims of crime – from £12.50 per month.
There are other reasons too – we are independent for a start of both the Home Office and the Police. Some of you have asked why we don’t show the photos of the Officers – well that’s because for reasons known only to the Home Office and Police.uk, they have not been made available to 3rd Party developers such as ourselves. To be honest though, I’m not sure how much we want them, there’s lots of other useful data we’d rather have first. But if you want to look up a Policeman/woman by name, you can do that in the search box too. And you can’t do that on Police.uk either !