Pubs and Pints, Crims and Crimes: Exploring the Relationship between Public Houses and Crime

Ignazio Cabras*, Ekaterina Shakina, Arpita Bhattacharjee

*Corresponding author for this work

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This paper examines the relationship between public houses or pubs, and crime rates in England and Wales. The impact of pubs on local communities is generally studied and investigated within the context of third places, thus physical places that facilitate the accumulation of social capital within communities. We estimate Poisson Fixed-Effects (PFE) and a frontier Spatial Autoregressive (SAR) model on a unique panel dataset for 375 local authorities in England and Wales between 2003 and 2018. Results from the analysis indicate that the presence of pubs progressively relates to a higher incidence of major crimes when transitioning from rural to urban areas, mainly due to weaker level of community cohesion and a lack of resources to support formal policing in more urbanized centres. These findings highlight the importance of place-based strategies in tackling rising incidences of crimes, indicating that recent pub closures may have contributed to severing community ties that act as a deterrent to crime in certain areas.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1146-1164
Number of pages19
JournalEuropean Planning Studies
Issue number5
Early online date6 Nov 2023
Publication statusPublished - 3 May 2024

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