Admiral Insurance has revealed the UK’s bike theft hotspots, along with a warning to cyclists to be vigilant and consider bicycle cover.
The warning comes as bike theft crime is on the rise, with Admiral’s latest data showing that bike theft is already 56% higher in the first two months of 2022 than this time last year.
Noel Summerfield, head of household at Admiral, said: “As the weather improves, many of us will be dusting off our bikes and opting to cycle more this spring. And as fuel prices skyrocket, cycling will be a cheaper option for getting around – something that could be welcome news for bike thieves.
“Bicycle thefts have soared during the pandemic, as more people bought new bikes. The average number of bike theft claims over the last year was 25% higher than the previous year and 40% higher than the year before the pandemic.
“Our data shows that bike theft claims for the first two months of 2022 are already over 56% higher than the same period last year, suggesting that the criminals are taking advantage of the extra bikes on our roads.”
UK bike theft hotspots
Top 10 postcode areas for bike theft claims in the last two years (including London):
1. SW – Southwest London
2. E – East London
3. SE – Southeast London
4. BS – Bristol
5. EH – Edinburgh
6. N – North London
7. CB – Cambridge
8. BN – Brighton
9. SO – Southampton
10. KT – Kingston-Upon-Thames
Top 10 postcode areas for bike theft claims in the last 2 years (excluding London):
1. BS – Bristol
2. EH – Edinburgh
3. CB – Cambridge
4. BN – Brighton
5. SO – Southampton
6. KT – Kingston-Upon-Thames
7. NE – Newcastle
8. BH – Bournemouth
9. OX – Oxford
10. M – Manchester
“Cyclists in the capital should be on high alert as London postcodes dominate the top 10 postcode areas for the number of bike theft claims registered over the last two years,” Summerfield added. “Southwest London (SW) tops the list, but four other London postcodes also feature in the top ten.
“Bristol, Edinburgh, Cambridge, Southampton and Brighton are the top five bike theft hotspots outside of London. Overall, Southern areas see more bike thefts – Edinburgh, Newcastle and Manchester are the only areas north of Watford Gap to feature in the top ten. With the spring here, it’s also a good time to make sure your bike is covered on your home insurance.
“At Admiral, any pedal bike worth less than £350 is automatically covered on your policy, but many bikes cost more than this and will need to be added as a specified item.
Read more: CIE reports “extremely positive” picture of cycling sector in 2021, though supply chain challenges remain
“The average value of a bike stolen and reported to our claims team in 2021 was £941. However, we insure bikes up to the value of £5,500 and some stolen bikes reported to our claims team over the last two years had a value of over £5,000. We’ve also had claims where multiple bikes belonging to one family have been stolen, which would be very upsetting.
“Whether you’ve been cycling for years or have just bought your first bike, be vigilant and use our free guide to help you step up your bike security and ensure you have the right level of cover.”