Burglars choose half of high road
Burglars and robbers do much more damage on one side of a high road than the other and shop owners want police to stop them, writes Kate Ferguson. It only takes a few seconds to cross Kilburn High Road, but according to figures released by the Metropolit
Burglars and robbers do much more damage on one side of a high road than the other and shop owners want police to stop them, writes Kate Ferguson.
It only takes a few seconds to cross Kilburn High Road, but according to figures released by the Metropolitan Police, businesses along the Camden side are robbed more often than the Brent side.
Theft and handling of stolen goods are almost twice as common along the Camden side of the road, with 63.3 incidents per 1,000 in the year ending March 2010, compared with 37.6 in Brent.
The burglaries on the Camden side of the road is 17.3 per 1,000, compared with 13.8 on Kilburn's side. Robberies are also more frequent with 8.6 per 1,000 in Camden and 6.6 in Brent. Monthly figures also reveal that two areas along Kilburn High Road, have a higher than average crime rate - and both are in Camden.
The worrying statistics concern shops along the Camden side where they have suffered a spate of break-ins and thefts in recent weeks.
Elite fashion was broken into over the Easter weekend. Owner Parveen Aslam said: "We have an alarm, CCTV and a bolt in the door, but they still broke in. We hardly see the police.
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"If we do, they say they don't cover this side of the road."
Safer Neighbourhood teams from Camden and Brent patrol the High Road, but businesses claim Camden have less of a presence.
Kashif Zafrani, who runs a diamond shop off Kilburn High Road, said: "Policing is a real worry for businesses in the area. You just don't see the police on the Camden side. They overlook the high road and concentrate on the estates. We get overlooked because we fall between the two boroughs."
A spokeswoman for Camden police defended their presence in area and said any disparities between crime figures were due to the business and social difference.
She said that higher crime rates along patches of the Kilburn High Road, were due to operations by the SNT team.
She said: "Camden PCSOs and officers patrol Kilburn High Road, daily and speak to shop staff. Camden officers and PCSOs deal with incidents and assist on either side of Kilburn High Road. We share intelligence with our colleagues in Brent, Barnet and Westminster."