Horwich allotment watch scheme launched after wave of thefts
AN allotment watch has been launched to deter criminals after a spate of burglaries.
Green-fingered allotment owners have joined forces with police to drive away criminals who have been blighting different areas of Horwich.
The scheme was set up after numerous sheds at allotment sites and homegrown items were targeted by thieves in June and July.
PC Ben Brookfield and PCSO Sandra Furnival, of Bolton North Neighbourhood Policing Team, started Allotment Watch, which involves regular contact with allotment owners and the organisation of meetings throughout the year to advise on crime prevention and to share information and police intelligence.
PC Brookfield said: “We are trying to highlight to the community that sheds, outbuildings and garages packed with tools, machinery and other valuable equipment can offer easy opportunities for thieves. I would advise owners to take precautions to help reduce the risk of having your property stolen and getting it traced and returned to you if it is stolen.” Retired Ken Whowell, aged 66, whose allotment is in Nasmyth Street, Horwich, said he and other allotment users agreed to join the scheme after they were shocked to hear attempts had been made to break-in to a number of sheds at the site a few months ago.
He said: “It came as a bit of a shock that there had been attempted break-ins and a bit of a reality check as we had all become a bit complacent.
“Our task is now to make sure sheds and the site are as secure as possible so anyone who tries to sneak in will have to make a lot of noise to actually get into the sheds.Even if they did there probably wouldn’t be anything to take. We also challenge people who come onto the site. I am hoping Allotment Watch will deter thieves.”
Signs warning criminals about the Allotment Watch in operation will be erected at the sites involved.
People with allotments based in Nasmyth Street, Brazley estate, Longworth Road, Lever Park School, Green Lane and Lever Park Avenue are involved.
People are encouraged to disable lawn mowers when they are not being used, register valuable property on immobilise.com, security-mark items and chain items together to make them difficult to steal.
For information about the scheme call Bolton North NPT on 0161 856 5671.
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