Theft and burglary in Bradford

By Jonathan Ratcliffe

Bradford is the UK’s seventh largest city with a population of 522,452, but according to a recent YouGov survey the city ranks as the most unsafe place in the UK with 42% of respondents saying they felt unsafe in the city.

With its dark satanic mills in Manningham and rows of boarded up terrace houses in Lister Park, it’s not hard to see why people feel unsafe in this once proud Yorkshire city. A quick look at the National Statistics website shows residents have good reason to worry. Cases of rape and sexual assault nearly doubled in the city during 2015, with 512 rapes being reported compared to 276 in 2014.

But it is the rate of theft and burglaries in Bradford that really strikes a chord, for five years in a row Bradford has featured as one of the most burgled hotspots in the UK. Now new data released by insurance specialist RIAS places Bradford as the second highest burglary hotspot in the UK ahead of much larger cities such as Leeds, Glasgow and even London, with 126 burglaries carried out in the city for every 10,000 residents.

You can see a list of the top 10 most burgled hotspots in the UK below:

  • Manchester 135/10,000
  • Bradford 126/10,000
  • Leeds 120/10,000
  • Liverpool 102/10,000
  • Bristol 96/10,000
  • London 86/10,000
  • Sheffield 82/10,000
  • Birmingham 72/10,000
  • Edinburgh 79/10,000
  • Glasgow 40/10,000

Data provided by RIAS

The data from RIAS is backed up by a report from the local police commissioner which shows that burglaries across the city have risen 13.3% in 2016, with 841 domestic burglaries being reported compared to 742 in 2015. The data also revealed the areas of Bradford most at risk with, Idle, Eccleshill, Great Horton, Holme wood, Heaton and Wyke topping the list of most burgled.

How to keep your home secure

With the rise in theft and burglary cases in Bradford, residents are sure to be worried about the safety of their property. With that in mind here are a few steps residents can take to ensure their property remains secure.

  • Lock your doors and windows: It might seem obvious but always ensure your doors and windows are secure. Most burglars gain access through open doors and windows, so make sure you keep them locked, even when you’re in the house.
  • Keep keys out of sight: While we’re on the subject of locks, always ensure you keep your keys out of sight. Don’t leave them in the hall or where they can be seen from outside your property
  • Install a burglar alarm: Most burglaries are opportunistic, so you can reduce the chances of your house being targeted by installing a burglar alarm. If a potential burglar sees your home is protected he will likely choose an easier target.
  • Install good outside lighting: Most burglaries occur under the cover of darkness, a good outside light can reduce the risk of being targeted. You should look to install a motion sensor light to protect the back of your property.
  • Leave the lights on: When you go out, always leave the lights on, this makes it look like someone is at home and makes it much less likely your home will be targeted. You should also consider leaving the TV or radio on to further increase the illusion.
  • Repair broken fences: Try to make it as difficult as possible for an intruder to gain access to your property. Repair any broken fences and replace garden gates and remember to keep them locked.
  • Store bikes and toys away: Try not to make your home look inviting by leaving kids toys out in the garden over night. Always keep bikes safely locked away in the shed. If you don’t have a shed, consider keeping them inside.
  • Mark your property: Mark all your property and register it.
  • Secure high value items: If you have any high value or sentimental items, consider storing them in a vault or safety deposit box. This may involve a small cost but it is more than reasonable considering the cost of the items
  • Join your local neighbourhood watch: Finally, consider joining your local neighbourhood watch scheme. This will ensure your property is always under surveillance, even when you’re not there, and can help foster a community spirit in the area.
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BY Jonathan Ratcliffe

Jonathan manages Marketing at - with over 15 years experience in CCTV Installation - he writes as an Expert in CCTV Systems, News, Crime Rate Analysis and other FAQs