Street-level crime statistics for Whitchurch are now available online at Police.uk under a nation-wide initiative launched today by the Home Office.

The new system was widely reported in the media, which led to the system being swamped with queries during the day and causing some searches and statistics to be reported incorrectly. The BBC report HERE that the system cost £300,000 to develop. It covers England and Wales.

The BBC’s home editor, Mark Easton wondered in his blog entry Will crime maps work?: “The crime maps are a vital piece of the accountability jigsaw: in place of appointed experts sitting on police authorities scrutinising performance, local residents can use the information from the site to drive the priorities of elected police commissioners. But I do wonder whether it will work that way?”

What do you think? Will crime mapping be of use to you?

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The statistics for December 2010 are currently shown in the system, and they are reproduced here for easy reference (click on them to see them bigger). Streets with fewer than 12 houses are said to be included in a wider geographic area, to prevent identification of victims.