Nearly a third of violent crimes in Wakefield city centre recorded between 11am and 5pm, as Westgate tops list

Nearly a third of all violent crimes in Wakefield city centre across one year took place between 11pm and 5am, figures suggest.

Thursday, 9th December 2021, 10:37 am

A total of 271 incidents were recorded in the area between those times in 2019.

They accounted for 29 per cent of all violent crimes reported there during the year, with the hour between 11pm and midnight by far the busiest time for police.

The figures have been produced by Wakefield Council, as part of a paper on its curbs on new pubs, bars and off-licences in the city centre.

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Westgate accounted for more than a fifth of all reported crimes in the city centre.

A policy designed to limit new premises selling alcohol was brought in in 2006, but the council is now legally-bound to publish an assessment to back it up.

That was put out to a four-week consultation on Wednesday, with city centre residents and businesses among those who will be asked for their views.

The policy is likely to continue, unless councillors decide otherwise after the feedback has been completed.

The numbers show that crime in the city centre fell considerably in 2020, when pubs and bars were forced to shut during successive lockdowns.

Close to 1,000 incidents were reported in the city centre in 2019.

In 2019, assaults made up more than half of all city centre violence, with dozens of cases of domestic abuse, harassment and threats to kill also recorded.

Westgate, which is effectively the spine of the city centre, unsurprisingly saw more violent crime than any other streets.

A total of 232 incidents were recorded across 2019, more than double the numbers reported anywhere else.

Arundel Close, which is just off the junction between Northgate and Leeds Road, was the next busiest for cop-calling, with 81.

Kirkgate saw 78 incidents, while Union Street, which links Westgate to Trinity Walk, had 63 reported crimes.

The council has argued there are "too many" drinking establishments in the area and claimed that allowing more premises to sell alcohol and serve food in the early hours will make crime worse.

Its current policy dictates that any new venue applying for an alcohol licence has to demonstrate that it can improve the area.

Wakefield city centre crime figures 2019: Time of incident. (Source: West Yorkshire Police, via Wakefield Council)

Midnight - 1am: 24

1am - 2am: 38

2am - 3am: 36

3am - 4am: 44

4am - 5am: 42

5am - 6am: 23

6am - 7am: 38

7am - 8am: 18

8am - 9am: 18

9am - 10am: 15

10am - 11am: 21

11am - Noon: 41

Noon - 1pm: 38

1pm - 2pm: 35

2pm - 3pm: 41

3pm - 4pm: 43

4pm - 5pm: 68

5pm - 6pm: 59

6pm - 7pm: 50

7pm - 8pm: 47

8pm - 9pm: 36

9pm - 10pm: 34

10pm - 11pm: 38

11pm - midnight: 87

Local Democracy Reporting Service