The physical and social attributes of our local neighbourhoods affect how safe we feel – and feeling safe has a big impact on our quality of life. Research has shown that fear of crime impacts on more people’s lives than actual crime does.
Locally, while over 95% of people report feeling safe in their local area and in the city centre during the day, after dark this figure drops to about 80% in their local area and to below two-thirds after dark in the city centre. The main reasons given for not feeling safe at night are groups of young people, drinking/drunkenness and poor street lighting. From the planning and design perspective, aspects such as lighting, access, activity and physical protection are important. Also, signals of neglect in a neighbourhood can be an invitation to anti-social behaviour, vandalism and other types of crime and give a message that no-one cares.