1. Data sources – further information

For detailed information about the statistical sources used here, refer to the User Guide to Crime Statistics for England and Wales (ONS, 20151).

Note: This User Guide is the standard source of information on both police recorded crime figures and the CSEW.

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2. The Crime Survey for England and Wales

Data from the Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW) continue to be badged as National Statistics.

The CSEW is a face-to-face survey in which people resident in households in England and Wales are asked about their experiences of crime in the 12 months prior to the interview. The overall target sample size for the survey in the year ending March 2014 was 35,000 households.

In the year ending March 2014, the CSEW had achieved a nationally representative sample of 34,906 adults and 2,902 children with response rates of 75% and 68% respectively. The survey is weighted to adjust for possible non-response bias and to ensure the sample reflects the profile of the general population. Being based on a sample survey, CSEW estimates are subject to a margin of error. Unless stated otherwise, all changes in CSEW estimates described in the main text are statistically significant at the 95 per cent level. For more information on statistical significance and confidence intervals for CSEW data, see Section 8 of the User Guide to Crime Statistics for England and Wales (ONS, 2015).

There have been some minor changes to the classifications of CSEW offences, in order to improve coherence of categories and to more closely align them with the presentation of police crime recorded offences. A programme of work to implement these has now been completed and bulletins referring to the year ending March 2014 onwards include these revised CSEW classifications (including a full reclassified back series to 1981).

These new CSEW classifications do not change the overall number of offences estimated by the survey, just the categories in which they are presented. As part of these the offence category of robbery has been moved out of CSEW ‘Violence’ into a separate standalone category. Further detail on the changes made to the presentation of CSEW statistics can be found in the methodological note ‘Presentational and methodological improvements to National Statistics on the Crime Survey for England and Wales’ (176.2 Kb Pdf).

Alongside these classification changes, an additional piece of survey development work was also implemented to produce revised survey weights and a back-series following the release of the 2011 Census-based population estimates. The programme of work to produce the revised weights and key estimates for all survey years back to 2001/02 is now complete and both CSEW and police recorded crime use post 2011 Census population figures. See the methodological note ‘Presentational and methodological improvements to National Statistics on the Crime Survey for England and Wales’ (176.2 Kb Pdf).

Police workforce, England and Wales, 31 March 2014

In January 2015, police workforce figures as at 30 September 2014 were published by the Home Office. However, to be consistent with the 2013/14 CSEW used in this publication, figures as at 31 March 2014 have been used in this publication.

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3. List of products

Release tables published alongside this commentary include a set of bulletin tables containing the data tables and numbers appearing behind graphs in this publication, and more detailed estimates and counts of crime levels as set out in the table below.

The following are URL links associated with the production of Crime Statistics.

  1. Crime statistics publications on the Home Office website

  2. Historic police recorded crime

  3. Previous quarterly publication

  4. User Guide to Crime Statistics for England and Wales

  5. The 2013/14 Crime Survey for England and Wales Technical Report Volume 1

  6. Analysis of Variation in Crime Trends (methodological note)

  7. Future Dissemination Strategy – Summary of Responses

  8. Presentational changes to National Statistics on police recorded crime in England and Wales (methodological note)

  9. Presentational and methodological improvements to National Statistics on the Crime Survey for England and Wales (methodological note)

  10. Focus on Victimisation and Public Perceptions 2012/13’. Published 30 May 2014

  11. Focus on Property Crime, 2013/14’. Published 27 November 2014

  12. Focus on: Violent Crime and Sexual Offences, 2013/14’. Published 12 February 2015

  13. National Statistician’s Review of Crime Statistics

Anonymised datasets from the Crime Survey for England and Wales (in SPSS format) currently are available on:

In addition to these Official Statistics releases, provisional police recorded crime data drawn from local management information systems sit behind, street level figures released each month, via:

Police recorded crime, street level mapping tool

Crime Statistics for Scotland are available from the Scottish Government

Crime Statistics for Northern Ireland are available from the Police Service of Northern Ireland

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4 .Background notes

  1. The Focus On releases are produced in partnership with the Home Office.

  2. National Statistics are produced to high professional standards set out in the Code of Practice for Official Statistics. They undergo regular quality assurance reviews to ensure that they meet customer needs. They are produced free from any political interference.

  3. Next quarterly publication: 23 April 2015.

    Future thematic report due to be published:
    Focus on Property Crime 2014/15: November 2015

    Follow us on www.twitter.com/statisticsONS or join us at www.facebook.com/statisticsONS

    Media contact:

    Tel: Luke Croydon 0845 6041858
    Emergency on-call 07867 906553
    Email: media.relations@ons.gov.uk

    Statistical contact:

    Contact Name: John Flatley
    Tel: +44 (0)207 592 8695
    Email: crimestatistics@ons.gov.uk

    Website: www.ons.gov.uk

  4. Copyright

    © Crown copyright 2015

    You may re-use this information (not including logos) free of charge in any format or medium, under the terms of the Open Government Licence. To view this licence, go to: The National Archives or write to the Information Policy Team, The National Archives, Kew, London TW9 4DU Email: psi@nationalarchives.gsi.gov.uk

  5. Details of the policy governing the release of new data are available by visiting www.statisticsauthority.gov.uk/assessment/code-of-practice/index.html or from the Media Relations Office email: media.relations@ons.gov.uk

    The United Kingdom Statistics Authority has designated these statistics as National Statistics, in accordance with the Statistics and Registration Service Act 2007 and signifying compliance with the Code of Practice for Official Statistics.

    Designation can be broadly interpreted to mean that the statistics:

    • meet identified user needs;
    • are well explained and readily accessible;
    • are produced according to sound methods; and
    • are managed impartially and objectively in the public interest.

    Once statistics have been designated as National Statistics it is a statutory requirement that the Code of Practice shall continue to be observed.

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View all data in this compendium

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John Flatley
Ffôn: +44 (0)20 7592 8695