Crime has fallen over the last year in Southend, official police records reveal.

Essex Police recorded 18,099 offences in Southend in the 12 months to March, according to the Office for National Statistics.

That was a decrease of 12% compared to the previous year, when there were 20,508.

But violent crime has risen in Basildon over the last year.

Essex Police recorded 7,790 incidents of violent crime in Basildon in the 12 months to March, according to the Office for National Statistics.

That was an increase of 6% compared to the previous year.

At 41.6 crimes per 1,000 people, that was far higher than the rate across England and Wales, which stood at 29.9.

One of the main factors behind the increase in Basildon was the rise in stalking and harassment, which rose by 34%, from 2,434 incidents to 3,262.

There were 1,135 drug offences in Basildon, up 62%, and 793 drug offences in Southend which represented no change. 

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Here the Echo has put together a map plotting where every drug offence was reported in south Essex between January and May this year. 

You can use the map to search for areas across the area. 

It also tells you the latest information on whether a caution was issued or the case is going to court. 

Overall, police recorded 13% fewer crimes, excluding fraud, across England and Wales, with around 4.6 million offences in the year to March.

The ONS said the annual drop was helped by a "substantial" fall in crime during April last year, when the first lockdown restrictions were introduced.

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The number of recorded crimes increased between July and September, it added, before decreasing again as lockdown measures were imposed toward the end of last year.

However, in March this year, recorded crime was higher than the previous year as the phased exit from lockdown started.

Billy Gazard, from the ONS Centre for Crime and Justice, said: “The coronavirus pandemic has had a significant impact on patterns of crime.

"There were large decreases in theft offences, such as domestic burglary and theft from the person, as more people stayed at home and limited their social contact."