Where are the most dangerous areas of London?

There has been a large discussion recently about the rise in violent crime in the capital. Indeed there has been a substantial rise in offences over the last 12 months in London. Overall crime is up 5.6 percent, which is equal to a rise of 42,775 offences. Violent crime, the area which causes the most concern for Londoners has seen dramatic increases. From 2016-2017, knife crime has risen a whopping 24 percent. Last year in the capital there were 12,074 offences involving knives. 4,412 of those offences resulted in a person being injured in a knife attack and 87 people were murdered with knives in the capital.

A report today in the Evening Standard revealed that gun crime was also up 13 percent. According to the report, there were 350 shootings in the capital last year, up from 310 on the year before. At the same time a record 880 guns were seized by the Metropolitan Police last year, an increase of 100 firearms. Just yesterday a 21-year-old man was shot in the head in Stratford, East London and is fighting for his life in hospital.

Now in this article I am going to try to attempt to reveal what is the most dangerous area of the capital statistically. I am aware that some people will dispute the findings in this article because statistics do not necessarily compare to an individuals experience in a certain area. I am not going to be making assumptions about areas, even though I am familiar with many parts of London, I am only going to be presenting cold hard facts when trying to establish where the most dangerous part of the capital is.

Beginning with homicide, London saw 127 homicides in the capital last year, the highest number since 2010 but way down on the record high set back in 2003 when 224 people were murdered in the capital. Compiling statistics to evaluate which of London’s 32 boroughs had the worst problem with this crime this is what I could find.


-The borough with the highest number of murders in London in 2017 was Newham, which saw 11 murders. The small area around East and West Ham was by far the worst affected. 4 people were murdered in this small area in 2017. Southwark saw 12 deaths, but some of those include the victims of the London Bridge terror attack so could not be included. 2nd was Enfield which saw 8 people murdered. 3rd, 4th and 5th on the list was Ealing, Tower Hamlets and Croydon which all saw 7 people murdered last year. The worst single neighbourhood for murders was the small area of Peckham in the Borough of Southwark, which saw 3 people murdered. Bow ranked 2nd as the neighbourhood which saw the most murders. 4 people were murdered here, but due to Bow’s larger population, Peckham ranks higher.

-Out of these boroughs, the place where someone was most likely to be stabbed was Newham. 7 people were stabbed to death in Newham last year. Newham was also the most likely area for someone to be shot to death as well, 3 people were shot dead in Newham last year, while the 4 other worst affected boroughs only saw 1 shooting death each.

-The population of Newham is 332,800. That is equal to roughly 2.6 percent of London’s population, while Newham accounted for roughly 9 percent of London’s total homicides. Newham had a homicide rate of roughly 2.9 per 100,000, while the capital as a whole had a homicide rate of 1.5 people per 100,000.

-Due to these findings I have to rank Newham number 1 as the most dangerous area in the capital for homicides.


Frustratingly, the Metropolitan Police do not release their annual or monthly crime figures anymore, so I have had to do some digging to try to establish the hotspots for violent crime in general in the capital.

-Back in 2016, a map was compiled using A&E data to track the number of violent crimes using hospital admissions. It was found that the Royal London Hospital which straddles the boroughs of Tower Hamlets and Newham had the highest concentration of violent crime admissions. The areas of Mile End Road and Whitechapel Road recorded the most violent incidents. 2nd was Rye Lane in Peckham and 3rd was Tulse Hill estate in Lambeth.

-In 2015, a separate report found that there was several areas in the capital which were plagued by knife attacks. The area with the highest recorded number of knife attacks was Wood Green High Road in North London, which saw 60 stabbings along the small stretch of road between 2012 and 2014. The boroughs with the highest number of stabbings were Southwark, which saw 605 stabbings, Lambeth was just behind with 599 stabbings while Newham came in 3rd with 555 incidents. The borough which came 4th was Haringey, where Wood Green High Road is situated.

-Acid attacks has been one of the crimes which has seen rises of epidemic proportions in recent years. A report that came out earlier this year listed 11 hotspots for acid attacks. Of these 11 areas, 5 were in the boroughs of Newham and Tower Hamlets, which rank 1st and 2nd for numbers of acid attacks in the capital respectively. 289 “corrosive substance attacks” were recorded as taking place in Newham between 2015-2017. One of the other areas of interest which was listed was Elephant and Castle, which is in the borough of Southwark.

-Due to these findings, I have to rank the areas of Newham, Southwark and Tower Hamlets as the worst areas in the capital for violent crime in general.


 I only compiled this list to include crimes of a violent nature. Due to the Met not releasing their figures publically, it is becoming increasingly difficult to compile data on all crime categories. When it comes to violent crime it is easier to determine the areas where this type of offence is committed. There are several pockets in the capital which appear to have a larger violent crime problem than others.

For instance Peckham, which is in the London Borough of Southwark saw 3 men stabbed to death last year in an area which only has a population of 19,500 people. This gives the area of Peckham an astoundingly high murder rate of 15 per 100,000. While the area of East Ham saw 4 people murdered. The population of 76,000 people in the area would give East Ham a murder rate of roughly 4.25 per 100,000.

So, in conclusion I have determined two areas which are the most dangerous parts of London. This is by no means a reflection on the people living there, I am only simply breaking down the statistics and coming up with the findings.

-The most dangerous neighbourhood of London is Peckham. The factors I have used to determine this is the astonishingly high rate of 15 murders per 100,000 of the population, combined with the A&E data which reveals the area around Rye Lane to be 2nd highest in the capital for violent crime admissions.

-The most dangerous borough of London is Newham. The factors I have used to determine this is the fact that the borough had the highest number of homicides last year. Newham was the borough with the highest number of knife deaths and gun deaths in London. Newham also had the highest amount of acid attacks in the capital and the hospital admissions from the areas of Mile End Road and Whitechapel Road which straddle the boroughs of Newham and neighbouring Tower Hamlets leave me with no choice but to determine that Newham is the most dangerous borough of the capital.


  1. Newham, East London
  2. Southwark, South East London
  3. Tower Hamlets, East London


  1. Peckham, London Borough of Southwark
  2. Bow, London Borough of Tower Hamlets
  3. East Ham, London Borough of Newham


Picture from independent.co.uk

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