THE majority of residents are worried about the level of crime in their area, a new survey has revealed.

Of 998 residents living in the West Mercia Police area, including Worcestershire, 67 per cent said that they are worried about the level of crime in their area, with anti-social behaviour, burglary and police presence key areas of concern highlighted.

Latest Office of National Statistics show there had been 83,238 recorded crimes excluding fraud, in West Mercia, in the year to June 2020, with 26,087 burglaries, 10,446 harassment offences, 13,129 violence without injury offences and 9,019 criminal damage and arson offences recorded.

In comparison, in the year ending June 2019, there were 86,854 recorded crimes excluding fraud, with 31,584 burglaries, 8,807 harassment offences, 12,614 violence without injury offences, and 9,970 criminal damage and arson offences.

The survey, conducted by the Police Crime and Commissioner’s office, also found that 72 per cent said that they feel safe in their local area.

The survey was launched ahead of the setting of next year’s policing budget and it found, when people were asked if they would be willing to pay more in council tax to maintain existing levels of service, 58 per cent of the respondents said yes with the majority, 31, per cent, opting for paying £20 more.

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PCC John Campion said: “This survey has given me a valuable insight into what matters to people, and where their areas of concern are. I want to thank people for taking the time to respond.

“With Covid placing an impact on the economy, and wider public finances, there are greater uncertainties than usual as we head towards next year’s policing budget but this survey will help greatly as I prepare for that.”

Chief Inspector Gareth Morgan said: “Whilst the statistics show there is a lot to be positive about, we understand the impact that any crime can have on those who experience it, and we constantly seek to improve our performance and find new and better ways to deliver our service to the community and prevent people becoming a victim of crime.

“Our local policing teams continue to target prolific offenders, working with our communities to improve security and safety and carrying out thorough investigations to ensure offenders are brought to justice.”