Are You SHEDucated?

There has been a recent spate of burglaries from sheds in Merton, where bicycles, garden tools and furniture have been stolen.

Merton Partnership Against Crime (MPAC) is working to combat burglary and it is one of the priorities in Merton’s Crime & Disorder Strategy. There are also a number of simple, practical steps that YOU can take to help keep your property safe and sound:

· Make sure that you lock your shed. Use strong padlocks and locks. Fix padlock protectors to all padlocks. Replace exposed screws on hinges/locks with coach bolts.
· Fit an alarm to your shed. These are cheap and easy to install and can be very effective.
· Lay concrete on the floor of your shed so that you can chain cycles, mowers, ladders and tools to a strong anchorage point.
· Security mark the contents of your shed. Make a note of the serial numbers of any equipment. You may want to consider photographing valuable items.
· Check that your insurance covers thefts from your shed or garden.
· Fit an external security light that is activated by movement.
· Make sure that you put tools and ladders away after use – a burglar could use YOUR tools to break into YOUR HOME.

You can also use the design and layout of your garden to help protect your property:

· Gravel is very noisy to walk on, consider using it for paths instead of paving stones.
· If you have fencing panels wire them together around the post so they can’t be lifted up to give the burglar an entry or exit point.
· If your home is hidden from view by plants, prune them to increase natural surveillance from neighbours and passers-by.
· Think about the plants you have around your sheds. Use plants that are prickly and act as a natural deterrent to thieves, e.g. roses and holly. Your local garden centre should be able to give you some advice on the kind of plants that will be suitable.

“Following this advice should help you to keep your property safe and sound, leaving you to enjoy your garden this summer” Caroline Ellis, MPAC Assistant Officer, said.

Further information on crime prevention can be found at http://www.met.police.uk/crimeprevention
Or by contacting the Crime Prevention Unit at Wimbledon Police station on
020 8649 3249. MPAC can be contacted on 020 8545 4720

Ends