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Mayor highlights drop in crime across public transport network

21 February 2011
  • New figures show travelling across the capital is getting safer
  • Robbery on public transport has fallen by a massive 46.5 per cent in the last three years.
  • Criminal damage to buses and Tube trains has also fallen hugely - by 59.3 per cent.

The chance of being a victim of crime on the capital’s bus network is at its lowest since records began in 2004/05. In the last three years overall crime has fallen by 30 per cent on the buses (fall of 10,595 crimes) and by 20 per cent on the Tube (fall of 3,305 crimes). During the same period violent crime on the buses fell by 19 per cent and by 15 per cent on the Tube and the Croydon Tramlink.

The figures were revealed as the Mayor joined uniformed officers from the Met and the British Transport Police (BTP) at Finsbury Park to herald the extra resources he is putting in to build on the success of the last three years. In his proposed budget last week, the Mayor announced plans for 413 extra warranted officers on public transport as part of an additional £42m funding for policing.

In the last year, crime across public transport fell by 4 per cent. Bus-related crime was cut by 2.4 per cent and offences on the Underground dropped by 6.7 per cent.

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: ‘London is one of the safest capitals in the world but we can always do more to ensure people can travel feeling safe and secure. I'm encouraged by these figures but we cannot be complacent. I salute the safer transport teams and the British Transport Police for their hard work.’

The Mayor also today launched The Right Direction – his strategy for improving safety and security on public transport until 2013.  It sets out the Mayor’s priorities and focuses on vulnerable groups such as young people, women and older people.   The strategy contains a number of priorities to tackle crime and fear of crime on the transport system, including reducing theft and anti-social behaviour and increasing the confidence of older people when travelling in London.

Since becoming Mayor, Boris Johnson has increased investment in transport safety.  Achievements include delivering Safer Transport Teams in all London Boroughs, providing 400 more MPS officers to help staff 32 hub teams at strategic locations, doubling the number of cab enforcement officers in London, creating a cycle task force of 32 officers, providing 50 more British Transport Police officers and banning alcohol on public transport. 

Steve Burton, Director of Community Safety, Enforcement and Policing at Transport for London, said: ‘The latest figures demonstrate the excellent work done by our policing partners on and around the transport network.

‘TfL will continue to work in partnership with the Mayor, the Metropolitan Police and the BTP to ensure that the transport network in London remains a low crime environment.’

Commander Simon Bray, Westminster, said: ‘The Safer Transport Command is working together with Transport for London and British Transport Police to keep London moving safely.

‘These outstanding figures demonstrate the effectiveness of our patrols and operations and their impact in disrupting criminal activity on public transport.’

During his visit to north London, Boris Johnson met with officers from the British Transport Police (BTP) and the Metropolitan Police who were providing crime prevention advice to travellers passing through the interchange and carrying out enforcement activity with Revenue Protection Officers. A cycling safety enforcement operation also took place in the surrounding area.  Finsbury Park station is one of London’s strategic transport hubs where there is enhanced joint working between BTP and the MPS.


Notes to Editors: 

1. Crime figures are a comparison between the end of year figures for 2007 and the end of year figures for 2010. For statistics on transport related crime visit

2. Robbery on public transport has fallen by 46.5 per cent in the last three years from 5194 robberies in 2007 to 2782 robberies in 2010.

3. Criminal damage to buses and Tube trains has fallen by 59.3 per cent in the last three years from 8,178 instances in 2007 to 3333 instances in 2010.

4.. The Right Direction is the first three year strategy produced by the London Transport Community Safety Partnership (LTCSP), on behalf of the Mayor.  The strategy sets the strategic framework for how members of the partnership will work together over the next three years to tackle transport related crime, antisocial behaviour and fear of crime. Copies of the strategy can be found at:

5. Bus network policing information:

  • Overall there are almost 2,000 Police Officers and PCSOs dedicated to the bus network in London - more than ever before.
  • MPS Safer Transport Command (STC), primarily funded by Transport for London (TfL) at a cost of around £89 million a year to fight crime on buses, tackle illegal taxi touts; and assist with the control of traffic congestion.
  • There are 32 Safer Transport Teams (STTs) covering every borough in the Capital.  The teams are funded by TfL and patrol on and around the bus network.

6. Tube-related police patrolling London Underground:

  • In 2003, there were 470 BTP officers for London Underground. Over the last few years this has increased around 700 officers.

7. Tube-related CCTV summary:


  • There are approximately 12,000 CCTV cameras on the Tube network which will rise to more than 14,000 over the next few years as part of the ongoing station modernisation programme. This will see the upgrading and expansion of CCTV facilities from analogue to digital and the recording of high quality images to hard drive rather than magnetic tape.
  • This will ultimately mean that no one will be able to enter the Underground network without their face being recorded by CCTV camera. CCTV coverage also extends to trains and will be expanded as new rolling stock arrives on the network.
  • Footage from CCTV cameras is not only able to viewed and monitored locally by a specific station but can also be accessed remotely by the Network Operation Centre at London Underground HQ and by the British Transport Police. This does not cover all stations.


  • CCTV can play a critical role in identifying crimes, victims and perpetrators and images are used to identify those wanted by the police in connection with criminal investigations.