Back in 2009 and 2010 Thamesmead made the national news a fair few times as the fraud capital of the UK. By some measures it was even the worst for fraud in the entirety of western Europe.

Back then fraud prevention group the Third Man Group was quoted in a BBC article:

“Last year we indicated it was the capital in the UK for credit card fraud. And actually we went as far as to say it was probably the capital of Europe for credit card fraud as well.

He said the company had identified an entire street in the town where there was evidence of people being involved in fraud at every address.”





Almost a decade on and the picture in Thamesmead is still bad. Experian have an online map where postcode searches reveal fraud figures in 2017:

  • Thamesmead north – east (in Bexley borough) recorded 133 cases in 2017.
  • Thamesmead north – west (in Greenwich borough) recorded 116.

These areas are not particularly high-density in terms of housing, with most of Thamesmead’s tower blocks falling outside these postcodes. It’s mostly modern homes amongst a maze of cul-de-sacs.

Above most areas

Most areas in London are at least half those levels. As figures measure by postcode it doesn’t exactly follow town boundaries but even so, Thamesmead sticks out.

Woolwich was 80, Welling 21. Bexleyheath at 18.

Deptford to Lewisham was 60. Peckham west was 42 and Peckham east 53.

In fact the only place in south east London that was up there I found was the SE9-6XX area which had 117. This is an area west of Eltham reaching up to Shooters Hill.

To give some context away from SE London here’s some other figures across highly populated areas of London:

Densely populated areas such as Clapham (SW4 7XX) was 37, Streatham east (SW16 2XX) was 55, Whitechapel north (E1 5XX) at 45 were lower.

Very few are up there with Thamesmead. Two that are include Croydon at a whopping 151 and 134 in the Leytonstone area of E11 4XX.

You can search here to see details on Experian’s map.




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