ONS statistics crime report for the year ending March 2023 was released at the end of July. This includes various data including police recorded crime and figures from the crime survey for England and Wales (CSEW). It’s interesting that police recorded crime shows an increase to the highest level of crime for some years, whereas CSEW shows a decrease. This could be because the CSEW includes data from as far back as April 2021. It’s worth noting that, in the recent report of retail crime, Association of Convenience Stores (ACS) suggested that only 16% of crimes against retailers are reported to the police.

Statistics: Comparing year ending 2023 with 2022 and 2020

ONS shows how the data compares with the previous years, as well as the last year before lockdown. Obviously lockdown had an impact on crime levels, with some going up and others going down.

There were 275,919 police recorded incidents of burglary in the year ending 2023. This is up 4% compared with the previous year. Similarly robbery is up 13% and vehicle offences up 13%. These crime numbers are all lower than pre pandemic levels.

CSEW reports 2,650,000 incidents of theft in the year ending March 2023 – a huge increase compared with the 1.5 million reported for the previous year. This category includes theft from a person as well as shoplifting and other theft offences. Police recorded incidents of robbery also increased by 13% compared with the previous year.

Police recorded crime in England and Wales in the year ending March 2023 exceeded pre-coronavirus pandemic levels. The 6.7 million crimes recorded were 11% higher compared with the year ending March 2020 (6.1 million offences). 


The good news is that whilst one in three people have experienced antisocial behaviour, the incidents of ASB have decreased compared with last year and compared with pre-pandemic levels. Criminal damage is reported to have fallen by 1/3 and fraud has returned to pre pandemic levels.

Local Picture

West Yorkshire fared the worst out of the local area, with 314K total recorded crimes. Lancashire had 130K, North Yorkshire 49K and South Yorkshire £160K. Overall 16% or burglaries and 13% of theft offences recorded in England happened in Yorkshire and Lancashire.

Police recorded crime is not designated as National Statistics, and CSEW has been suspended as National Statistics, as ONS continues its’ work to improve the crime statistics for England and Wales.