Tower Hamlets Crime Overview

Tower Hamlets is among the top 10 most dangerous cities in London, and is among the top 10 most dangerous overall out of London's 33 towns, villages, and cities. The overall crime rate in Tower Hamlets in 2020 was 95 crimes per 1,000 people. This compares poorly to London's overall crime rate, coming in 8% higher than the London rate of 87 per 1,000 residents. For England, Wales, and Northern Ireland as a whole, Tower Hamlets is among the top 20 most dangerous cities, and the 606th most dangerous location out of all towns, cities, and villages.

In December 2020, Tower Hamlets had the worst crime rate in London for bicycle theft, with 124 crimes reported and a crime rate of 0.38 per 1,000 inhabitants. April 2020 was also a bad month for Tower Hamlets residents, when it was London's most dangerous area for burglary, recording 197 crimes at a rate of 0.61 per 1,000 residents. Tower Hamlets recorded 223 reports of criminal damage and arson during February 2020, making its crime rate of 0.69 the worst for criminal damage and arson in London that month.

The most common crimes in Tower Hamlets are violence and sexual offences, with 8,762 offences during 2020, giving a crime rate of 27. This is 2.4% lower than 2019's figure of 8,970 offences and a difference of 0.64 from 2019's crime rate of 28. Tower Hamlets's least common crimes are possession of weapons, with 243 offences recorded in 2020, a decrease of 12% from 2019's figure of 273 crimes.

Compare Tower Hamlets to other towns and cities

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

Tower Hamlets Crime Map

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Crime in Tower Hamlets Compared To London

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Summary of Crimes in Tower Hamlets This Year

 Tower HamletsLondon 
CrimeCountRateCountRateRate Difference
Anti-Social Behaviour25,16377.49416,48646.5240% more dangerous
Bicycle Theft2,0566.3324,3552.7257% more dangerous
Burglary2,6618.1961,0906.8217% more dangerous
Criminal Damage and Arson2,0006.1651,7285.786% more dangerous
Drugs2,7568.4952,7895.9031% more dangerous
Other Crime4131.2710,3371.159% more dangerous
Other Theft3,0869.5084,2109.410.95% more dangerous
Possession of Weapons2430.756,0140.6711% more dangerous
Public Order2,2586.9556,3686.309% more dangerous
Robbery1,0113.1127,5443.080.96% more dangerous
Shoplifting8042.4835,6593.9860% safer
Theft From the Person1,2743.9235,1173.920% safer
Vehicle Crime3,41610.52107,68712.0314% safer
Violence and Sexual Offences8,76226.98229,97825.694.8% more dangerous

Tower Hamlets Compared to Nearby Cities

CityTotal CrimesCrime RateRate Difference
Hounslow23,38586.1310% safer
Barking and Dagenham18,44186.629% safer
Lewisham26,97888.217% safer
Lambeth30,39593.231.5% safer
Newham33,02993.531.2% safer
Tower Hamlets30,74094.66-
Southwark31,82299.815% more dangerous
Hammersmith and Fulham18,574100.326% more dangerous
Haringey28,144104.7610% more dangerous
Islington25,583105.5110% more dangerous
Hackney29,840106.1511% more dangerous

Crime Over Time in Tower Hamlets

View crime percentage over time for

Recent Crimes in Tower Hamlets

DateCrime TypeLocationOutcome
August 2021Violence and sexual offencesOn or near Woodseer StreetInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
August 2021DrugsOn or near NightclubLocal resolution
August 2021Other theftOn or near NightclubInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
August 2021BurglaryOn or near Garner StreetInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
August 2021DrugsOn or near Cornwall StreetLocal resolution
August 2021Other theftOn or near SupermarketInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
August 2021ShopliftingOn or near SupermarketInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
August 2021Other theftOn or near Cotton StreetInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
August 2021Public orderOn or near Cotton StreetInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
August 2021Theft from the personOn or near BishopsgateInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
August 2021Bicycle theftOn or near Durham RowInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
August 2021Other theftOn or near Merchant StreetInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
August 2021Vehicle crimeOn or near Merchant StreetInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
August 2021DrugsOn or near Wolsey StreetLocal resolution
August 2021DrugsOn or near Calvert AvenueLocal resolution
August 2021Bicycle theftOn or near Collingwood StreetInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
August 2021Vehicle crimeOn or near Collingwood StreetInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
August 2021Vehicle crimeOn or near NightclubInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
August 2021Bicycle theftOn or near Driffield RoadInvestigation complete; no suspect identified
August 2021Criminal damage and arsonOn or near Driffield RoadInvestigation complete; no suspect identified

Tower Hamlets Crime Trends

 Crime Rate Per 1,000 Residents 
Crime2017201820192020Trend
Anti-Social Behaviour40414777Getting worse
Bicycle Theft4.94.54.46Getting worse
Burglary91098Safer
Criminal Damage and Arson7666Safer
Drugs4.0678Getting worse
Other Crime1.11.11.11.3Getting worse
Other Theft12141510Safer
Possession of Weapons0.830.960.840.75Safer
Public Order7777Safer
Robbery (inc. mugging)4.54.74.43.1Safer
Shoplifting3.93.32.92.5Safer
Theft From the Person (inc. pickpocketing)5673.9Safer
Vehicle Crime10111111Safer
Violence and Sexual Offences26292827Safer

Changes In Tower Hamlets's Crime Rates Over Time

Offences in Tower Hamlets's Green Spaces

We only display green spaces in Tower Hamlets that are named, and have had crimes recorded within their boundaries during 2020.

NameASBDrugsPublic OrderRobberyVSOAll OthersCrimes per Hectare
Jubilee Park714251833
Langdon Park---3335
Millwall Park32--2434.8
Poplar Recreation Ground4----02.4
Prospect Park132--3558

Comparing Tower Hamlets to the UK's Major Cities

CityCrime RateRate Difference
Barnet67.7140% safer
Coventry77.4122% safer
Croydon83.2214% safer
Sheffield85.8110% safer
Bristol86.2110% safer
Tower Hamlets94.66-
Leicester97.442.9% more dangerous
Birmingham102.878% more dangerous
Liverpool107.2812% more dangerous
Bradford133.0229% more dangerous
Leeds137.1031% more dangerous

Crime in Tower Hamlets's Neighbourhoods

Bethnal Green South is the most dangerous neighbourhood in Tower Hamlets, followed by Spitalfields in second place, and Bethnal Green East as the third most dangerous area. Tower Hamlets's safest neighbourhoods are, in order, Millwall North, Millwall South, and Mudchute.

NeighbourhoodCrime CountCrime RateDanger Rank
Aldgate1,3559815th
Bethnal Green Central6447926th
Bethnal Green East928134Third
Bethnal Green North East8299914th
Bethnal Green North West889119Sixth
Bethnal Green South1,436177First
Blackwall & Leamouth1,6758220th
Bow North & Fish Island1,0469716th
Bow South1,33510411th
Bow West1,175108Ninth
Brick Lane North1,075118Seventh
Bromley-by-Bow East9338024th
Bromley-by-Bow West1,0827827th
Canary Wharf977117Eighth
Columbia Road822123Fifth
Limehouse East8589118th
Limehouse North & Stepney East7927429th
Mile End East & Burdett Estate1,2909717th
Mile End West8938023rd
Millwall North5464930th
Millwall South4173532nd
Mudchute3554431st
Poplar Central960107Tenth
Poplar Leaside95710113th
Poplar West9067925th
Shadwell Basin & Ratcliffe8358122nd
Shadwell North6328221st
Spitalfields2,016168Second
St George in the East & Wapping North6597628th
Stepney Green8298919th
Tower Hill & Wapping South68710112th
Whitechapel880131Fourth

Tower Hamlets Neighbourhood Crime Breakdown

Showing the safest and most dangerous parts of Tower Hamlets for specific criminal activity, with crime count and rate shown in brackets.

Crime TypeSafest NeighbourhoodMost Dangerous Neighbourhood
Anti-Social BehaviourMillwall North (533)Bethnal Green South (997)
Bicycle TheftMillwall South (8)Spitalfields (228)
BurglaryMillwall South (40)Tower Hill & Wapping South (103)
Criminal Damage and ArsonMillwall South (34)Bethnal Green East (86)
DrugsMillwall North (21)Bethnal Green South (180)
Other CrimeMudchute (1)Bethnal Green East (21)
Other TheftMillwall South (30)Spitalfields (294)
Possession of WeaponsBow North & Fish Island (3)Bethnal Green East (13)
Public OrderMillwall North (34)Bethnal Green South (118)
Robbery (inc. mugging)Millwall North (8)Bethnal Green South (66)
ShopliftingMillwall South (1)Canary Wharf (174)
Theft From the Person (inc. pickpocketing)Millwall South (3)Columbia Road (101)
Vehicle CrimeMillwall South (24)Poplar Leaside (183)
Violence and Sexual OffencesMillwall South (172)Bethnal Green South (356)

Crime in Tower Hamlets During Coronavirus Lockdowns

Looking at the months the UK was in lockdown in 2020 due to Covid-19, how did crime rates in Tower Hamlets change compared to the same month in 2019? The biggest increase in lockdown crime came in April, when Tower Hamlets saw a 200% increase in anti-social behaviour. Tower Hamlets saw a large fall in theft from the person during May, when it fell by 72% compared to May in 2019. Rates of burglary and other theft both fell year-on-year for every month during Tower Hamlets's lockdown.

CrimeMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec
Anti-Social Behaviour+20%+200%+147%+84%+20%+43%+42%+44%+102%+77%
Bicycle Theft-39%-37%-17%+19%+61%+186%+168%+115%+93%+53%
Burglary-29%-21%-25%-20%-7%-10%+7%-13%-6%-37%
Criminal Damage and Arson-3%-22%+2%-24%+10%+16%+36%-11%-5%-6%
Drugs-32%-3%+100%+87%+26%+2%+34%+83%-3%+13%
Other Crime-17%+53%+8%-14%-29%+76%+104%+83%-5%+12%
Other Theft-52%-65%-65%-46%-26%+2%-2%-28%-39%-37%
Possession of Weapons-48%-33%+13%+58%+10%-39%+13%+10%-28%-19%
Public Order-22%-18%-7%-11%+5%+5%+26%+8%+12%-11%
Robbery-12%-67%-45%-44%-10%-18%-25%-38%-49%-34%
Shoplifting-17%-40%-46%-5%+6%+7%-20%-8%-20%-31%
Theft From the Person-48%-65%-72%-71%-42%-33%-15%-44%-49%-39%
Vehicle Crime+20%-29%-24%-24%+19%+7%+14%-19%-34%-18%
Violence and Sexual Offences-16%-21%-20%-14%-5%+17%+13%+4%+6%+11%

Frequently Asked Questions About Crime in Tower Hamlets

What police force serves Tower Hamlets?
Tower Hamlets's local territorial police force is the Metropolitan Police Service.
How dangerous is Tower Hamlets?
Tower Hamlets is among the top 10 most dangerous cities in London.
What is Tower Hamlets's most common crime?
The most common crimes in Tower Hamlets are violence and sexual offences.
What is the least common crime in Tower Hamlets?
Tower Hamlets's least common crimes are possession of weapons.

Last updated: 05 Oct 2021