Thursday, 16 August 2012

Safer Hastings

I always get concerned when I read about robberies or attacks in our town. It’s not just the nasty experience that someone has been put through but I worry will this deter people visiting Hastings or moving here.

So when I read about an unpleasant mugging of some foreign students staying in the town I asked for the facts. Of course statistics can never compensate the students who were picked on but the facts are that foreign students are safer than ever in Hastings.

There were about 40 incidents in 2009, 28 in 2011 and just 11 so far this year. We used to worry too about alcohol-related assaults and unruly behaviour on Friday and Saturdays in the town centre. We were worried that Hastings might be worse than other towns so people might choose to go there. It turns out now that between April and July Eastbourne126 such incident (37.4 per 1,000 residents) and Hastings 98 (29.1 per thousand).

As for figures for all crimes in the town our local police commander recently reported that “this year so far has seen further reductions in crime compared to this time last year 15 % reduction in total crime, this equates to 339 fewer victims of crime.”

So is every crime one too many - yes; is it a nasty experience for the victim  - all too often yes; is Hastings generally a safe place to live, study in or to visit - yes. Let’s all work hard to keep it that way.