Cleveland, Durham, and Northumbria are three counties within the North East of England. They are also all within the top 10 most dangerous places to live in England and Wales according to The Home Office (dailymail). This doesn’t portray a very good image for the North East of England in terms of its security.

A total of 263,102 crimes (excluding fraud) were recorded in 2020 according to The Office for National Statistics in the North East. Most of these crimes were violence against persons at 96,457 cases and theft offences at 73,109 cases. These are alarming rates compared with the population figures of the areas in the North East. But which areas are the worst for crime?


Top 10 most dangerous places to live in England and Wales:

  1. Cleveland
  2. West Yorkshire
  3. South Yorkshire
  4. Durham
  5. Humberside
  6. Kent
  7. Greater Manchester
  8. London
  9. Lancashire
  10. Northumbria



Cleveland has the highest rate of crime victims in England and Wales. It has an extremely high rate of 99.4 crimes per 1,000 people. According to the Daily Mail, almost one in ten people living in towns such as Middlesbrough, Hartlepool, and Redcar have been targeted in the past year. That is a shocking figure to see, but it is understandable why Cleveland comes top of the list due to this reason. Arson rates in Cleveland are a shocking four times higher than the national average in the UK.



Durham ranks as the 4th most dangerous place to live in England and Wales.  With it too having a bad reputation for its safety and levels of crime. County Durham is the highest-ranking county for criminal damage and arson in England and Wales. Durham’s criminal damage and arson crime rate is 180% compared to the national average, according to Plumplot statistics. This shockingly high figure suggests just why it has ranked 4th in total for danger. The shoplifting, violence, and burglary crime rate for County Durham are all similarly high.



Northumbria placed 10th on the list, making it the third location to appear in the top 10 most dangerous locations to live in England and Wales. The area recorded a total of 135,828 crimes last year (excluding fraud), with violence against persons contributing the most to that figure. Northumberland’s general crime rate began to fall due to the pandemic last year, but this did not help the level of violent crimes. These instead increased (northumberlandgazette). There were 8,523 recorded incidents of violent crime in the last 12 months to September. This rise is due to one main factor: an increase in stalking and harassment incidents.



Middlesbrough is amongst the areas with high levels of crime and is amongst one of the worst areas for knife crime in England and Wales, with 11.2 knife crimes occurring per 10,000 people. Middlesbrough is also at the top of the list for areas that have the highest risk of crime for young people according to the crime and justice consultancy, Crest Advisory. Other Northern locations such as Hartlepool and Newcastle were also amongst the top 10 areas that young people were at risk of being affected by crime (



Darlington’s crime rate is also high, with it being named the most dangerous part of the North East for police officers last year. There were 125 assaults on police constables between June 2018 and May 2019. That’s a much higher rate per 100,000 people than anywhere else in the region (chroniclelive). Many of the areas that were reported as the worst areas for crime in Darlington were around retail areas such as supermarkets and shopping centers. This would suggest an increased risk to retailers as well as the public.


Our Services within the North East

We have security guards and security officers operating in Darlington and throughout the North East and UK. We cover retail, construction, and warehouse security businesses all over the UK as well as providing varied security services for other industries. If you and your business need security services, please get in touch with us today or visit our Darlington Security Company page to see how we can help protect you and give you peace of mind against such high crime rates.

Check out our other articles for help and advice on how to stay protected against crimes wherever you may be. For example, our Top 10 ways to secure your retail store in 2021 and Top 6 tips to prevent crime on construction sites in 2021!