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|Dear Nassington Residents
As you may be aware, there has been a spate of house burglaries over the past few months in the village. Last week an emergency meeting was called, attended by the Chief Inspector for East Northants and Wellingborough, Nick Lyall. This was called at very short notice (on Thursday for Saturday) and thank you to all who were able to come and apologies for the timing to those who weren't.
The following is a brief summary of what was discussed - a slightly fuller account to follow via the newsletter etc C.I. Lyall gave a candid and somewhat reassuring account of the recent events. There have been 5 burglaries in Nassington in the last 3 months. The police are confident that these were carried out by a professional and well organised large gang, who work in smaller groups travelling into our area, burgling houses where they feel they can steal items that can be quickly and easily disposed of (e.g.money and gold/jewellery). The m.o. (how they do things) does not indicate that they are targeting properties to take televisions / computers / phones etc but mainly high value easily cashed things. (but of course we should always be on our guards because there may be other opportunist thieves about too)
They seem to be working along the A14 corridor from Peterborough to Kettering. Local villages that have been targeted in similar fashion include Woodnewton, Polebrook, Apethorpe and Fotheringhay (and maybe Wansford and Elton too) - they seem to be taking scenic routes to the A14 from Peterborough!!
This is reassuring from the point of view that we don't seem to be spied on by the tradesmen/delivery people/service workers as was feared at one point. However, it appears that the way these people are working at the moment is to 'do a reccee' on a village to get a feel for what cars are about, which drives do and don't have cars on, and then, apparently, they return in the evening to see how much the situation has changed. Then perhaps a couple of days later they check the same properties and then maybe a day or so after that. If it appears that people are coming and going from a property, cars on and off the drive, curtains opening and closing and lights going on and off randomly rather than at the same time etc, they will avoid it. If a property appears to be empty they will try to get a closer look - perhaps dropping in a bogus leaflet to check out the situation re post on the mat or another way of being close to the house, with a 'legitimate' excuse if challenged.
One of the ways to avoid becoming a victim of this horrible crime is to work together with your neighbours, so that if you are going away, ask them to park on your drive, to pop in and out and turn different lights on at different times, close curtains randomly and make sure nothing post is picked up from the doormat (but not piled on the hall table in full view - tuck it away somewhere). We need to be looking out for one another.
C.I. Lyall did say that there is no evidence that they have attempted to break in while anyone was at home - he said it is INCREDIBLY RARE that people's homes are broken into while they are asleep or at home. The current 'gang' is looking for empty properties which they think are going to be empty for a while -in some cases they have spent many hours looking for what they are after once they're in the house, and know all the 'usual' hiding places where people keep their valuables.and in their endeavours to find them, inevitably the property is trashed too - our thoughts are with those of you to whom this has happened.
However, as well as this current type of targeted burglary, there is always the risk of 'opportunist thieves' - the type of thief who will wander into a house where the door's ajar and help himself, or see an open window and reach in to grab the keys/rings/phone/purse/phone he can reach, or pretend to be doing something legitimate and jump in through an open upstairs window.
The message was anything you can do to make your property hostile to thieves and burglars - do it! Very many of us are guilty of leaving the door on the latch to 'pop' somewhere - we must stop. WE HAVE TO MAKE IT HARD NOT EASY We must make Nassington the type of village where it's a waste of time for
these people to come as the homes are secure and in our community there are people looking out for one another. (The theory is a bit like 'herd immunisation' - if the majority of kids are inoculated, viruses can't spread - if the majority of homes are secure and we are known for being strong on NHW, the crooks will stay away!!). DO NOT BUY FROM DOOR TO DOOR SELLERS - the police have emphasised that many of these people, the 'Nottingham Knockers' selling dusters and the like are either known criminals and invariably have some kind of police record and are basically bad news - we have to make them unwelcome.
To this end, after the meeting, a few villagers stayed behind to talk about Neighbourhood Watch. The general consensus was that this would be a good thing for the village to resurrect and Dec Downey and Terry Boulton put themselves forward as the overall village co-ordinators. Some other people put themselves forward to be 'area reps' - the village will be split into 'bitesize chunks' so that this role does not become an onerous job. This way, if we need to spread the word about a matter quickly, we can do.
Obviously, much of the information can be spread electronically by email, text, facebook and the webpage, but with the NHW back in place, we will be able to help protect some of the more vulnerable people in our community.
At the moment, we have volunteers to cover Station Road, Runnel Lane, Church Street, Homefield. Woodnewton Road, Westmorland Close and probably Fenn Close and St Marys Close. If you would like to volunteer for where you live, we need people for The Drove, Apethorpe Road, Northfields Lane, Eastfield Crescent (to include St Marys Way) and Mill Road. Email firstname.lastname@example.org if you can help. It is envisaged that most communications will be carried out electronically, but from time to time you may have to drop leaflets to your small cluster of houses, especially if there are more vulnerable people there. At the moment 'Farms and Lodges' are not covered either - these are the outlying properties that are part of the parish but not within the confines of the village - we are contacting many of you by email.
Thanks for reading.
Finally, if do not want to receive further neighbourhood watch information by email to the email address on which you received this, please click 'reply' with 'UNSUBSCRIBE' or send a preferred email address on which you would like to be contacted. Your email address will be passed to the person who is will be the NHW for your part of the village - if you would prefer that this does not happen, please advise by reply button
As promised, below are the contact details for contacting the police - highlight the email address, right click your mouse and save it to your address book, or go to the village website www.nassington.org.uk and click on the email address on the home page. I am soorry these are later than expected - a computer gremlin has been out to get me!! Also to those at the meeting, I was wrong - the 101 number was not in the September newsletter.
If you have any concerns or want to discuss further please contact Neighbourhood Watch on email@example.com this goes to Dec and Terry.
Nassington Neighbourhood Watch
To Call the police:
(when life is in danger or a crime in progress)
In all other cases: 03000 111 222 for Northants Police
or 101 for other police forces
To report something to the local police office at Oundle email: