During this year’s National Neighbourhood Watch Week, we’ve collected some of the most helpful burglary prevention advice for residents in Greater Manchester and the surrounding areas. This year, they celebrate 40 years of supporting neighbours and building communities.
What is National Neighbourhood Watch Week?
Neighbourhood Watch was set up to bring “neighbours together to create strong, friendly, active communities where crime and anti-social behaviour are less likely to happen.” The scheme itself originated in the USA in 1964 and eventually moved over to the UK in 1982. After 25 years of local Neighbourhood Watch groups, in 2007, a nationwide umbrella organisation was set up, bringing together local, county and regional groups with the support of the police and the Home Office.
National Neighbourhood Watch Week (NNWW) is a week set aside to highlight the Neighbourhood Watch movement and present advice and community workshops to residents across the country. This National Neighbourhood Watch Week is from the 30th of May and will run until the 5th of June.
Here’s some advice to keep your home safe this NNWW and throughout the summer.
Burglary Prevention in Summer
Windows and Doors
Recent statistics suggest that one in three burglaries occurs due to an unlocked door. We leave windows and doors open during warmer weather to cool our houses. However, this is also leaving your home susceptible to thieves. Whether opportunistic or pre-planned, thieves see unlocked doors as a perfect chance to get into your home without detection or leaving a trace of their entry.
Advice by police is that if you wish to open a window or a door to let the air in, make sure you remain in that room. If you choose to move to a different part of the house or even the garden, close and lock the window.
The lighter summer evenings bring longer hours for cold callers to stop by your house. While many of these callers come with the sole purpose of selling to you, there has been a concerning rise in people using cold calling as a distraction technique before carrying out a burglary. To spot a distracted burglar before they strike, follow these tips:
- Ask the cold caller for their name and the company they are working on behalf of
- Ask for identification and, if they are traders, whether they are members of the Consumer Codes Approval Scheme or the Government Trust Mark scheme.
- Do not allow them to enter your property.
- If they suggest any work that needs carrying out on your property, discuss the details with a friend or family member first.
- Do not sign up for anything on the spot.
- NEVER pay cash upfront or go to a cash point with the trader.
Finally, the most critical advice issued by police is to call 101 if you suspect a rogue trader or 999 if the distraction burglary is in progress.
Garden Furniture and Outbuildings
Glorious summer days can be few and far between in Britain, so when the sun does shine, many of us like to take advantage and spend days and evenings in the garden. This can mean that more items of worth like garden furniture can often be left outside to avoid wasting time packing it all away. This is bad if your garden is open or accessible to outsiders, whether by gates or low fences and walls. To avoid having these items stolen, securely lock them away in a shed or garage each and every time.
It is also best to ensure that outbuildings themselves have adequate security. An old rusty lock barely holding together will not protect against intruders should your outbuildings be targeted.
The Safe Deposit Centre Manchester
At The Safe Deposit Centre, we provide secure storage in various sizes to protect your valuables. Safe deposit boxes are held within a highly secure, grade 10 vault and guarded by a range of security, including biometrics. We also offer flexible memberships making The Safe Deposit Centre an excellent alternative to storing valuables in your home. For more information call us on 0161 273 7487.