Manchester outstrips London in hate crime

Manchester has overtaken London as the UK area with the highest number of antisemitic incidents.

Community Security Trust statistics for the first half of 2011 show a 27 per cent rise in incidents in Greater Manchester, with 121 reported crimes. The London figure was 98, a drop of nearly a quarter on the same period last year.

The upsurge also contradicts Home Office statistics suggesting hate crime in general is falling across Greater Manchester.

However, the CST attributes the Manchester rise to more accurate reporting, saying that police and the trust had "intensified their co-operation and established a comprehensive exchange of incident data, focusing on the borough of Salford". This had resulted in the doubling of the number of antisemitic incidents recorded by the CST in Salford from 27 to 56.

It is believed that the CST was unaware of many antisemitic incidents in previous years because police had recorded them as general hate crimes.

The police's own figures for east Salford are 87 antisemitic incidents for the year ending April 2011 - 39 per cent of all hate crime in the area. Hate crime specific to the Jewish Broughton Park neighbourhood was up by 23 per cent. A third of the perpetrators were apprehended.

Salford was the only Greater Manchester area where hate crime rose. In neighbouring Prestwich, it fell by 17 per cent with the CST also recording a fall in antisemitic incidents.

"Rises in Manchester's antisemitic incident statistics are largely due to excellent three-way relations between the visibly Jewish community, local police and local CST," said the trust's Mark Gardner. "We have many joint initiatives between all concerned parties to encourage better reporting."

Bury divisional commander Chief Superintendent Jon Rush acknowledged "that the number of antisemitic assaults is far too high. People in our Jewish communities should be able to safely and freely go about their business without fear of being attacked."

    Last updated: 9:59am, July 29 2011