Wigan crime hotspots revealed

College Avenue, Wigan
College Avenue, Wigan

YOU are more likely to get beaten or mugged in this alleway than anywhere else in Wigan.

That is one of the revelations of a new crime map, which identifies offence hot spots in and around town centres the length of the country.

And College Avenue, off the bottom of King Street, is identified as the worst. In December alone, there were 39 offences committed in and around there, 18 of them violence-related.

In December 2011 alone police recorded 418 incidents in and around the town centre nightclubs, parks and shopping centres as the main focal points.

Worryingly the second highest type of incident was violence, topped only by anti-social behaviour, of which there were 133 reported offences.

The rate of violent crimes rocketed by 47 per cent in just one month from 40 in November to 59 in December, the government’s updated crime mapping website shows.

The two worst places were detailed as the area around College Avenue, just off the bottom of King Street, and the area around Clarence Yard, behind King Street West and Wallgate.

Between them 31 violent crimes were reported, most of which were recorded as happening “on or near a nightclub.”

Crimes in these two areas account for virtually half of all the violent crimes that happened in the town last December.

And they were the scene of other crimes as well as violence too, including anti-social behaviour, public disorder and weapons offences, which are anything that could cause fear, alarm or distress or the possession of a weapon such as a firearm.

In total there were 43 offences recorded in the College Avenue area and 27 on Clarence Yard.

Although the number of anti-social offences were nearly double the violent crime rates the incidents were spread more evenly across the town centre, which on the map takes in parts of Scholes, Ince, Mesnes Park and Gidlow.

The third most prevalent offence in the town centre was theft with 55 incidents listed followed closely by shoplifting, of which there were 45 offences logged by police. More than half of these were committed around shopping centres in the town centre. There was just six drug offences and four robberies recorded during the month.

Another high crime category was criminal damage and arson, which again was spread evenly across the whole of the town centre area.

When compared to the rest of the borough Wigan was way ahead of neighbouring areas including Leigh, Pemberton (pictured left), Ince and Scholes.

Leigh had the second highest crime rates in December with 349 offences committed overall.

And of those 33 were violence-related, 123 were incidents of anti-social behaviour and 37 were for shoplifting.

In Pemberton 218 offences were committed overall and the most prevaent crime area was that of anti-social behaviour. Only 19 violent offences were committed.

Ince and Scholes combined saw 101 offences reported and Orrell had one of the lowest rates of violent crime, seeing just five.

The map does not detail exactly where an incident happened, instead listing an anonymous point on or near to the road in question.