What are Postcode Districts and why should I look at them on UKCrimeStats?

We have noticed a large amount of people searching on specific postcode districts and coming straight to our website.

Postcode Districts like;

L36 or BD9 or NE8.

There are good reasons why you would want to look at postcode districts on UKCrimeStats like seeing the shape of it on a map, the size in hectares, the population and population density, the crime totals by month, a heatmap across the whole area – but more on that later. First of all, let’s start with some basics;

What is a postcode district?

There are approximately 2,500 postcode districts. You could think of them as the first half of your postcode before the space. Their naming convention is somewhat indicative of the area they cover. For example, CR0 covers Croydon. And others do not – for example, BT1 in Northern Ireland. All postcode districts in Northern Ireland start with BT which has not obvious naming connection to NI. To further explain, the UK has roughly 32 million addresses spread out amongst 1.8 million postcodes. These are further broken down into 10,500 smaller postcode sectors and  105 much larger postcode areas like BT.  So postcode districts fall right in the sweetspot for a lot of people. They are short and familiar and in quite a lot of the country, you can describe where you live, especially in London, by just the postcode district. There are problems with postcode district though – they vary hugely in size – from 86,000 hectares for LD3 to just over 2 for WC1A. And population varies a lot too – from 154,000 in CR0 to zero. So making a like with like comparison requires some mathematical and statistical work – which is what we have done on UKCrimeStats.

Why do postcode districts matter?

Postcode Districts matter because they are the go to geographical shape for the insurance industry. As this article shows, car insurance costs can vary hugely according to postcode district. Here is also a much more detailed article on car insurance postcode ratings.

Why should I look at UKCrimeStats for postcode districts?

UKCrimeStats can show you for free the following;

1) What the postcode district looks like on a map

2) What the size is in hectares

3) What the population is

4) What the population density is

5) What the energy consumption data, property sales and road accident data looks like

Shortly, we’ll be making available in-depth postcode district reports which you can purchase for less than the price of a coffee.

Beyond this though, for professionals  who want to make comparisons across a large number of postcodes, then subscibing from just £4.99 a month is your best option. This allows you to;

  1. Avoid seeing ads
  2. Run reports and export the results to excel across all 2,500 postcode districts that answer questions like; between a selected month and year and another month and year, which postcode district had the highest/lowest type of crime/all crime/crime rate, total crime per hectare/crime rate per hectare?
  3. Run a heatmap and see exactly where crime is happening and not happening in a selected postcode district

These are all unique features that you won’t find anywhere else. But what is particularly useful is to be able to compare postcode districts on a crime per hectare basis. That’s because without it, comparing postcode districts makes little sense when they vary so much in size. Crime per hectare neutralises that distortion. It’s quite analagous to crime rate – a way of taking into account the size of the population and the underlying impact on crime. Just as with crime rate, the more populous an area is, the more likely victims and perpetrators of crime are like to interact, the more land there is, the more potential there is to have a higher crime total. So comparing postcode districts on a per hectare basis works well.


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