‘Camden Tube station will become crime hotspot when night Tube starts’
- Credit: Polly Hancock
Camden Town tube station has been identified by police as at risk of increased crime and anti-social behaviour when the Night Tube is launched, it was revealed today.
The station has been classified as a “red station” and earmarked for extra patrols when the new night service gets under way.
A report by the London Assembly’s Police and Crime Committee entitled “Crime on public transport” published today describes emerging concerns over crime on the night Tube.
It highlights an internal risk assessment by Transport for London (TfL) which states that sexual offences and other crimes are likely to increase when the service is introduced.
The TfL report predicts that anti-social behaviour will also rise, causing “high crime levels” and a “rowdy environment.
The Assembly report says the Met is working with British Transport Police to set up extra patrols at 12 key stations including Camden Town “to mitigate risk, crime and anti-social behaviour.”
Police and crime committee chairwoman Joanne McCartney said: “London has one of the largest public transport systems in the world, carrying around ten million passengers every day.
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“Crime on public transport is relatively low, but the network faces a number of key challenges which mean that complacency is not an option for the incoming Mayor.
“We know that this fear affects people’s use of public transport, so there is no room for complacency. There are also policing challenges – reports of violence and sexual offences have risen, and the expansion of the network will create new demand and challenges for TfL and the police.
BTP said it had recruited an extra 62 officers to patrol the night Tube so far. There will be 50 per cent more officers on duty during the night time.
The London Assembly report also raises concern over rises in the number of sex and violence offences on the bus, Tube and train networks in London - despite overall falling crime.
It also highlights how 32 per cent of women say they expect to take unlicensed minicabs despite the risks of sexual assault.
The study recomends the new Mayor should explore how to increase people’s confidence to report sexual offences and calls for greater penalties for taxi touting.
The new Mayor should constantly monitor, review and learn from policing arrangements for the Night Tube, and enable a swift response to any emerging crime concerns.
The new Mayor should explore how to further increase public awareness and confidence to report sexual offences on public transport, maximising on the success of Project Guardian.
The launch of the new Night Tube is now expected to be later in the autumn to allow London Underground time for more talks with unions. The 24-hour weekend service had been due to begin on 12 September on the Jubilee, Victoria and most of the Piccadilly, Central and Northern lines.
Other “red stations” idntified by police include London Bridge, North Greenwich, Vauxhall, Brixton, Waterloo, Oxford Circus, Leicester Square, Piccadilly Circus, Charing Cross, Victoria and Hammersmith