Stalking, a distressing and often misunderstood crime, continues to pose a concern in Somerset. However, amidst this concern, it’s important to be reassured that Somerset remains a safe place to live. 

As we work to address this widespread issue, we must rely on reputable sources and factual information.  

In this blog, we will look into the facts about stalking, drawing on respected UK sources to improve understanding and support effective interventions. 

Stalking in the UK – the reality check 

According to the Crime Survey for England and Wales, an estimated 1.5 million adults were stalked in the twelve months ending March 2021, with women being particularly affected.  

This alarming figure highlights the prevalence of stalking and its devastating effects on victims’ lives. 

Types of stalking behaviour.

Stalking manifests in various forms, extending beyond physical pursuit. The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) identifies behaviours such as unwanted communication, surveillance, and online harassment as common tactics used by perpetrators.  

By recognizing the diverse manifestations of stalking, we can better identify and respond to this form of abuse. 

Impact on victims. 

The effects of stalking go far beyond irritation. The Suzy Lamplugh Trust’s research reveals the considerable psychological and emotional toll that victims face, such as anxiety, depression, and PTSD.  

Many victims report living in continual fear, with their sense of security and liberty severely compromised. 

Legal framework. 

In the UK, stalking is a criminal offense under the Protection from Harassment Act 1997, with amendments made in 2012 to specifically address stalking behaviour. 

 The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) provides guidance on prosecuting stalking cases, emphasising the importance of robust evidence and victim support. 

Support services. 

Numerous organisations across the UK offer support and resources to stalking victims. The National Stalking Helpline provides confidential advice and assistance to those affected by stalking. The Suzy Lamplugh Trust operate a similar support line. 

Advocacy groups like Paladin advocate for policy changes and improved legal protections for victims. 

Prevention and intervention. 

Preventing stalking requires a multifaceted approach, encompassing education, awareness-raising, and early intervention.  

The Fixated Threat Assessment Centre (FTAC) conducts assessments of individuals exhibiting concerning behaviour, aiming to prevent escalation to violence and protect potential victims. 


As we face the realities of stalking in the UK, we must rely on authentic information and evidence-based ways to solve this complex issue.  

By elevating the voices of survivors, improving support services, and lobbying for policy reforms, we can move towards establishing a safer society for all. 

Let us stand together in our commitment to combat stalking and assist those impacted, guided by empathy, understanding, and action. 

Help and support. 

If you believe you’re being stalked or harassed, you have the option to file a report online or dial 101. In case of an urgent threat, don’t hesitate to call 999. You can also seek assistance from the Suzy Lamplugh Trust via the National Stalking Helpline at 0808 802 0300 or reach out to the Paladin National Stalking Advocacy Service at 020 3866 4107. 


If the person you believe is stalking you is a family member, intimate partner or ex-partner, support is available at Somerset Domestic Abuse or by calling 0800 69 49 999. 

About this article

April 22, 2024

Michael Wallis

Advice and support