Saffron Walden police issue a Christmas message to ‘beat the burglar’

SAFFRON Walden police have sent out a Christmas message in a bid to help residents ‘beat the burglar’.

The initiative follows a spate of house burglaries in the Reporter area in recent weeks and comes as police raise fears that a spike continues in the build up to, and after, the festive season.

Insp Kevin Wakefield of Saffron Walden police said: “I am conscious that there has been a number of dwelling burglaries in the district in recent weeks but I would like to reassure the public that we will be undertaking proactive operations and other activities such as increasing visibility and promoting preventative action.

“We live in a low crime area but it is not crime free. I would also urge the public to do their bit. There is only so much that police can do. People need to do whatever they can to protect themselves.”

Uttlesford’s crime reduction officer Peter Caulfield said that the national burglary rate peaks after Christmas but insisted that there are many precautions that can be taken to minimise the risk of becoming a victim of crime.

He said: “We do have an issue after Christmas of people putting out boxes for recycling for all to see. We ask people to be mindful of how they put out their rubbish – don’t advertise the goodies that have been unwrapped inside.

“You should also check contents insurance details annually – the value can rocket after Christmas.

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“Make good use of visibility marking for items – UV is useful but a burglar would not be able to see it and would not be deterred.

“If you haven’t already got one, consider installing an alarm.”

He added: “People have become complacent. We do live in a nice area but we are still a potential target.

“I don’t want to put the fear of crime into people but we are live in an affluent area waiting to be discovered. People need to take responsibility for their own security.”

Insp Wakefield stressed that Mr Caufield is available to all residents who need advice on protecting their property.

“Peter is an excellent resource with great experience. Don’t be afraid to give him a call,” he said.

For more details or advice on how to make your property safe, contact Mr Caulfield on 0300 333 4444.

Alternatively visit the neighbourhood watch website at which contains advice on how to do your own home security survey.