ALMOST 20,000 offences were recorded in Trafford last year, although the borough's crime rate is below the average for England and Wales.

Greater Manchester Police recorded 18,948 offences in Trafford in the 12 months to December, according to the Office for National Statistics.

At 79.8 per 1,000 people, this means the crime rate in the borough is below the average for England and Wales.

This is the first time the force has been able to offer this data since the implementation of a new IT system around three years ago, so no comparison to the previous 12 months is possible.

In response, Detective Superintendent Simon Hurst, of GMP Trafford, stressed the force does not intend to rest on its laurels in spite of a favourable comparison to the rest of the country.

He said: "Officers in Trafford are committed to reducing crime in the area and ensuring people feel safe. Despite the crime figures being lower than the average rate across England and Wales, rest assured we will not become complacent as one victim is one too many.

"In Trafford, we have extremely robust crime management plans to identify emerging threats and possible offenders, enabling us to act swiftly and take action.

"We have allocated designated resources to proactively arrest our priority offenders, working closely with partners to ensure we maximise opportunities to charge and remand those causing misery within our community.

"Our neighbourhood resources provide an integral part of our policing response and are deployed to target identified crime hotspots to deter crime and proactively target offenders.

"We are proud to have recently improved our response times to emergency and non-emergency calls, which maximises our chances of catching offenders and provides the service our communities expect and deserve."

The data also breaks down the offences into types, with violence and theft by far the most common in the borough.

In the 12 months to December, there were 6,548 violent offences and 5,762 theft offences recorded.

Other types to surpass 1,000 were arson and criminal damage, harassment and stalking, and public order offences.

Across England and Wales, police recorded a total of more than six million offences in the 12 months to December.

This was up eight per cent from 5.6 million in 2020, but in line with the total prior to the pandemic.