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How many CCTV Cameras in Birmingham?

Updated 3rd January 2018

We can estimate that there will be 100,000 CCTV cameras in Birmingham in the year 2020. Taking the British Security Industry Authority (BSIA) figures that say there is 1 camera for each 14 of the population, and given the increase in population, the number of CCTV cameras will likely hit 100,000 by 2020.

  • 2020 – 100,000 (estimate)
  • 2017 – 79,091 (see below)

Updated 6th November 2017

Did you know that the Birmingham Control Centre is one of the leading CCTV control centres in Europe? With an extensive network throughout the city and with immediate links to the West Midlands Police, the population of Birmingham can take comfort in the knowledge that their city has comprehensive CCTV and communications to help reduce and solve crime.

As stated by Birmingham’s city council on their website, the city’s CCTV systems record video, and, in some cases, audio. This allows them to diligently track the actions of suspects and, in some circumstances, they have the ability to broadcast audible warnings and deter criminal behaviour.

As stated on the Birmingham Community Safety Partnership website, as of 2017 there are 27 public space, fixed CCTV camera systems in the city. Excluding cameras mounted on buildings for perimeter protection, these camera systems are made up of 380 different cameras. The majority of these cameras are formally owned by the council, however, a selection of them are owned by partners including the police and private sector.

Birmingham’s CCTV cameras are spread across the city, particularly focusing on small areas around the city centre. According to a 2016 report by the Birmingham Mail and Birmingham Council, some areas are more highly condensed with cameras than others, in particular, the area surrounding Birmingham Children’s Hospital, Aston University and Corporation Street. Other areas which have more council CCTV focus include the vicinity of Priory Square Shopping Centre and along Dudley Road. The areas around Soho Road, Lozells Road and Park Lane also have noticeably heavier CCTV coverage. It is possible to see a full list of Birmingham’s fixed CCTV cameras here.

The bulk of Birmingham’s CCTV cameras are the result of various local initiatives. Many of these go back to the 1990s but have continued to receive demand, with the most recent initiatives being from 2011. Due to a variety of reasons from increased criminal activity in neighbourhoods, to graffiti on public buildings or unruly drivers, when a need for a camera system was identified, local partners would secure the necessary funding for installation and running costs. According to the Birmingham Community Safety Partnership website, 2008 saw the Birmingham City Council take over the running costs for nearly all of the city’s cameras,

The purchase and inclusion of around 140 re-deployable CCTV cameras (RCCTV) have been added to Birmingham’s CCTV. Arguably a more cost-effective and reliable way to track the city’s activity, redeployable CCTV cameras offer superior adaptability and flexibility in comparison to fixed CCTV. The use of redeployable CCTV cameras has proved to be popular within the communities where deployed, and are often favoured by police forces. However, CCTV can have some limitations, partly due to their newness in comparison to fixed CCTV. This can cause some limitations to their technology as well as operational difficulties.

The number of CCTV Cameras in Birmingham in 2017

Council Public Space – 27 systems – 380 cameras + 140 RCCTV = 520 in total

It’s hard to work out private and home cctv cameras, but if we apply the British Security Industry Authority (BSIA) figures who say there is 1 camera for each 14 of the population, we can divide the 1.1m population of Birmingham (2014) by 14 to give us 78,571 and based on the CCTV.co.uk knowledge that 70% of systems we install are home versus commercial we can work out the following:

Private Business Cameras – 23,571 cameras

Private Home Cameras – 55,000 cameras

Total Number of CCTV Cameras in Birmingham = 79,091

Last updated 06/11/17

All information featured in this article has been taken from the Birmingham city council, Birmingham Mail, and the Birmingham Community Safety Partnership. The BSIA survey is here.

(Please feel free to link to this page in your references information)

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