Peterborough residents want police meeting after items from garages are stole

Bernard Champness outside garages at Eyrescroft, Bretton EMN-180124-162628009
Bernard Champness outside garages at Eyrescroft, Bretton EMN-180124-162628009

Residents in Bretton have spoken about a spate of garage thefts since October, prompting the parish council to call for a meeting with police chiefs.

One affected resident was Chris Tilling (68) from Benland. He said “My garage got broken into two weeks ago.

“It was the same thing next door and two doors away.

“They had looked through my boxes but not taken anything.

“I phoned the police and they said ‘is there anything our scenes of crimes officers can do’?

“The problem with Bretton is the garages are separate from the houses.”

He added: “You do not see any police around here. There is a PCSO who comes through who is always rushing through the park and goes around the schools.”

Bretton Parish Council clerk Bernard Champness said: “What has been suggested is we call an open meeting which we think will be around the middle of May.

“We want to invite the chief constable and, if possible, the police and crime commissioner and someone from Peterborough City Council and every resident that has been burgled and has a problem.

“We will be asking them to put ideas forward and for the police and city council to say exactly what they are going to do about it.”

The parish council held a public meeting on Tuesday evening where garage thefts was discussed, and Mr Champness said: “The general feeling of the public that turned up is that crime in Bretton seems to be on the rise, but when you talk to police it seems to be okay.

“We set aside money a sum of money to fund PCSOs and police to work outside of police hours. Ten years ago we had £10,000, now we have had to reduce it to £2,000 because it is not being taken up.”

Another resident, who did not wish to be named, said she had had tools stolen from her garage and that burglaries have been taking place since October last year.

A police spokeswoman said: “There was an increase of nine offences in October compared to the previous 12 months.

“In November there were nine offences which was the same amount as the year before.

“There was a decrease in December from 16 to 13 offences compared to the year before, and currently in January there is an 18 percent decrease in non-dwelling burglaries for Bretton.”

However, crime prevention officer Amanda Large said: “Since January 1, 2018 there have been 49 offences of thefts from sheds/garages reported to the police. The majority of these have had power tools, cycles, fishing equipment and alcohol taken.

“The main areas that have been targeted are Bretton – Manton, Essendkye, Kings Henry Chase, Eyrescroft, Kirkmeadow, Pyhill, Ringswood, Dunsbury, Gullymore and Benland.

“Westwood – Flore Close, Deane Court, Everdon, Dingle Court and Lowick Gardens.

“Netherton – Witton Drive, Lyme Walk, Denham Walk, Ledbury Road and Vine Walk.

“Don’t leave valuable property in a shed or garage that is either unlocked or so run-down that it’s no obstacle to a thief. If you suspect it might not stand up to attack by a thief then don’t leave valuable items inside, such as your lawnmower or bicycle.”