MORE than 50 per cent of women in Southend said they felt unsafe walking alone in the streets at night, a police survey revealed.

The data comes from a recent public perception and satisfaction survey by Essex Police.

Chief Inspector Jo Collins is district commander for Southend and has highlighted how the force is working to make the streets safer.

She said: “Those numbers are a concern and I want to do something about it, I fit in that category as well so I don’t want people to feel that they can’t be safe at night here.

“We’ve done several things such as running free self defence classes for women in the summer that were really well supported, they were oversubscribed.

“Operation Safe Space which ran in the summer was also good, the feedback was really positive with that.

“We’ve had some really good examples of where we helped not just women and girls, but people who couldn’t charge their phones or didn’t have a ride home.”

The latest safe space opened in Southend High Street this summer and was positioned adjacent to HSBC and Odeon Cinema.

It was staffed by six police officers with assistance from street pastors, drug and alcohol support workers and Southend Council community safety officers.

Crime in Southend is down by 6.7 per cent in the 12 months to the end of June 2023, with anti-social behaviour offences falling by 32 per cent.

Chief Inspector Collins also revealed the Southend police force was solving 15.1 per cent of all crimes, a 1.1 per cent increase on the previous year, ranking fourth across Essex

She added: “I’d put the improvement down to the operations that we run in particular targeting high harm offences.

“That doesn’t mean other crimes are less important, but we recognise that those are the ones causing people the most harm.

“It’s also about looking at other outcomes, it doesn’t necessarily have to be a charge and court hearing. We can have some restorative justice in terms of rehabilitation as well.”

For more data on crime in Southend visit