At a time when problems of crime and antisocial behaviour stimulate debate on big society solutions, this book provides an exceptional means of tracing a line of response which began at the end of the 18th century. Nipping Crime in the Bud explores the origins and development of the Philanthropic Society (and its influence on contemporary institutions) amid growing alarm about crime levels, Draconian sentences under England’s Bloody Code and a paucity of effective crime prevention measures. Driven by Enlightenment zeal and ideals, this was the first voluntary sector charity devoted to ‘nipping crime in the bud’. It did so through education, training, accommodation, mentoring and support for young people. Uniquely, the book traces the first hard won policy networks and partnerships between government and the voluntary sector. It reveals how—sometimes against the odds, with funding on a knife edge but constantly striving for effective answers—influential philanthropists rose to the challenge and changed approaches to young people involved in crime and delinquency, traces of which endure today within the great crime prevention charities which still rally to this cause. Muriel Whitten’s book draws on previously neglected archival sources and other first-hand research to create a formidable and illuminating account about what, for many people, will be a missing chapter in English social and legal History.
'Nipping Crime in the Bud is a fascinating read. It combines History, criminology, politics, the Law and philosophy and yet tells an absorbing tale that one could find in any of the main stream non-academic book charts': Euro Vista