Shaftesbury Crime Overview

Shaftesbury is among the top 5 most dangerous small towns in Dorset, and is the 43rd most dangerous overall out of Dorset's 274 towns, villages, and cities. The overall crime rate in Shaftesbury in 2020 was 47 crimes per 1,000 people. This compares favourably to Dorset's overall crime rate, coming in 29% lower than the Dorset rate of 60 per 1,000 residents. For England, Wales, and Northern Ireland as a whole, Shaftesbury is the 349th safest small town, and the 3,417th most dangerous location out of all towns, cities, and villages.

In May 2020, Shaftesbury was the worst small town in Dorset for burglary, with 5 crimes reported and a crime rate of 0.56 per 1,000 inhabitants. December 2020 was also a bad month for Shaftesbury residents, when it was Dorset's most dangerous small town for possession of weapons, recording 1 crime at a rate of 0.11 per 1,000 residents. Shaftesbury recorded 5 reports of public order during November 2020, making its crime rate of 0.56 the worst small town for public order in Dorset that month.

The most common crimes in Shaftesbury are violence and sexual offences, with 194 offences during 2020, giving a crime rate of 22. This is 2.1% higher than 2019's figure of 190 offences and a difference of 0.45 from 2019's crime rate of 21. Shaftesbury's least common crimes are possession of weapons, with 1 offence recorded in 2020.

Compare Shaftesbury to other towns and cities

See how Shaftesbury shapes up compared to other locations around the country, including side-by-side comparisons of specific crime types, and separate charting of how Shaftesbury and your comparison town's crime rates stack up against one another.

Shaftesbury Crime Map

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Crime in Shaftesbury Compared To Dorset

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Summary of Crimes in Shaftesbury This Year

CrimeCountRateCountRateRate Difference
Anti-Social Behaviour24827.7625,48132.9419% safer
Burglary323.582,9163.775% safer
Criminal Damage and Arson637.056,2258.0514% safer
Drugs111.231,1991.5526% safer
Other Crime60.675350.693.0% safer
Other Theft495.484,1485.362.2% more dangerous
Possession of Weapons10.113080.40264% safer
Public Order232.573,1584.0859% safer
Robbery10.113600.47327% safer
Shoplifting141.572,6263.39116% safer
Theft From the Person10.113300.43291% safer
Vehicle Crime232.573,6634.7384% safer
Violence and Sexual Offences19421.7120,04125.9019% safer

Shaftesbury Compared to Nearby Small Towns

Small TownTotal CrimesCrime RateRate Difference
Verwood51734.1637% safer
Swanage36036.6728% safer
Ferndown Town73739.0520% safer
Sherborne42743.168% safer
Gillingham52443.617% safer
Blandford Forum52948.132.8% more dangerous
Dorchester1,31961.5324% more dangerous
Portland83562.7325% more dangerous
Bridport59070.7934% more dangerous

Crime Over Time in Shaftesbury

View crime percentage over time for

Shaftesbury Crime Trends

 Crime Rate Per 1,000 Residents 
Anti-Social Behaviour27252428Getting worse
Criminal Damage and Arson10787Safer
Other Crime1.
Other Theft91185Safer
Possession of Weapons0.110.45-0.11Safer
Public Order1. worse
Robbery (inc. mugging)0.340.340.110.11Safer
Theft From the Person (inc. pickpocketing)0.340.670.340.11Safer
Vehicle Crime3.
Violence and Sexual Offences16182122Getting worse

Changes In Shaftesbury's Crime Rates Over Time

Comparing Shaftesbury to the UK's Major Cities

Small TownCrime RateRate Difference
Barnet67.7131% more dangerous
Coventry77.4140% more dangerous
Croydon83.2244% more dangerous
Sheffield85.8145% more dangerous
Bristol86.2146% more dangerous
Leicester97.4452% more dangerous
Birmingham102.8755% more dangerous
Liverpool107.2856% more dangerous
Bradford133.0265% more dangerous
Leeds137.1066% more dangerous

Crime in Shaftesbury's Neighbourhoods

NeighbourhoodCrime CountCrime RateDanger Rank

Crime in Shaftesbury During Coronavirus Lockdowns

Looking at the months the UK was in lockdown in 2020 due to Covid-19, how did crime rates in Shaftesbury change compared to the same month in 2019? The biggest increase in lockdown crime came in September, when Shaftesbury saw a 400% increase in public order. Shaftesbury saw a large fall in burglary during June, when it fell by 80% compared to June in 2019.

Anti-Social Behaviour+18%+20%--16%+75%-11%-+89%+8%+67%
Criminal Damage and Arson+67%-50%+75%+40%-42%-30%-50%-14%--57%
Other Crime-+100%--------
Other Theft-17%-38%--33%-13%-67%---67%-20%
Public Order-+200%-67%--67%-+400%-+67%-
Vehicle Crime----------57%
Violence and Sexual Offences+33%-57%-31%-27%+53%+6%-33%+8%-19%+46%

Frequently Asked Questions About Crime in Shaftesbury

What police force serves Shaftesbury?
Shaftesbury's local territorial police force is the Dorset Police.
How dangerous is Shaftesbury?
Shaftesbury is among the top 5 most dangerous small towns in Dorset.
What is Shaftesbury's most common crime?
The most common crimes in Shaftesbury are violence and sexual offences.
What is the least common crime in Shaftesbury?
Shaftesbury's least common crimes are possession of weapons.

Last updated: 07 May 2021