Oct 27 2013

Good Lord, Ovens. You’ve Cracked Crime in Harrow!

simon_ovensLooks like Harrow’s newly-appointed Chief Superintendent, Simon Ovens, has got to grips with crime right across the borough in the few months since he arrived. We caught up with him last month over a cup of coffee in South Harrow police station, where he explained his strategy to reduce crime right across the borough. of course, words are one thing, but here’s the evidence.

Having a quick look at the Met’s Crime Maps, Harrow is one of only two boroughs with ‘below average’ rates of crime in the entire capital, with a rate of 3.96 in September, down from 4.19 in August (that’s crimes per 1000 people). The rest of the Met’s area hit a startling 6.91 last month.

Top place for crime in Harrow is, as always, Greenhill (11.11), followed by Wealdstone (5.70) and Marlborough (5.55). Safest three places are Pinner South (1.82), Headstone North (2.38) and Kenton East (2.51).

Over half the crimes are for anti-social behaviour (505 our of 947).

Credit where it’s due, but our new Borough Commander seems to have kicked crime into touch.


But, is it as good at it seems? We looked at more data which compared Harrow with the rest of the Met’s area, and as far back as March 2013, things were looking good – the chart shows the 12 months up until March 2013:



We’ll be watching progress on this over the coming months, but it seems that things really are looking up. Now all we need is a bit of intensive work in the ‘problem child’ areas (South Harrow, Wealdstone, for example) by the police, council and other agencies, and then we’ll be convinced. But certainly, Mr Ovens is firmly at the top of iharrow’s Christmas card list!



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  1. Praxis Reform

    I think in this case, the statistics aren’t showing the whole picture, since Harrow seems to be a borough of opposites. We have some nice areas (Pinner, Harrow-on-the-Hill, etc.) But then, there’s the Harrow Weald, Wealdstone, Marlborough, Greenhill corridor.

    Though, I do see from other recent posts here, Wealdstone seems to be getting some much needed attention, so hopefully Ch.Supt. Ovens will keep up the good work there.

    One thought that does occur to me is that nowadays, what have most people got that’s worth burgling? The value of electronic goods has decreased dramatically, so whereas ten years back, it might be worth someone stealing your video cassette recorder or computer. Today, you can buy a new DVD player for £20.

    Similarly, advances in car locking mechanisms mean that you’d probably have to burgle someone’s house first, in order to steal the keys for their car, if you were that way inclined.

    But, none of this means that crime is decreasing because of improvements in policing or advances in technology. Crime seems to be moving online, so do these figures include phishing scams, fake websites, ebay fraudsters, computer viruses, password theft, etc. along with all the offers for drugs, prostitutes, Ponzi schemes and invitations to take part in illegal scams from Nigerian Princes that pour into my inbox every day.

  2. Jeremy Zeid Chairman Harrow UKIP

    Perhaps Mr Ovens will now tell “the likes of us” if the spooks, snoops, police, CCTV and the disgusting and unBritish 500mtr radius no protest, no freedom of speech North Korea Zone has been removed from where Abu Qattada lived in Belmont.

    Mr Ovens at last HPCCG said that “in case I hadn’t noticed, the order was signed by a High Court Judge”. What.. Spontaneously, just out of the bkue?

    The Police applied for the order and it is for the POLICE to cancel ot.

    I will be asking him at tonight’s Safer Neighbourhoods meeting at the Civic Centre 7pm, if the North Korea anti-freedom zone has bow been removed and if not why not.

    “The likes of me” (Mr Ovens desciption of me and by extension Harrow residents) have a right to know. We are supposedly in ENGLAND not some totalitarian hellhole.

    The fight against crime is NOT a license to push the public around and then bleat about a “lack of public engagement”. Mr Ovens and ACPO take note.

  3. Mikkie Walsh

    Very few people bother reporting crime now. Because they know the criminals rarely get caught or prosecuted. I was mugged last week in Eastcote Lane. But never bothered to report it. Because I knew I would be nothing more than a number.

  4. j p hobbs

    Well when the worlds criminals live in the UK perhaps our leaders will say enough , Christmas has been moved to April the first this year. Don’t forget to turn your clocks back .

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