Hartlepool allotment holders urged to beef up security measures after spate of burglaries

Barry Coppinger
Barry Coppinger

Police are warning allotment holders to strengthen security after an increase in break-ins.

Cleveland Police says there has been 49 allotment burglaries across the force area since the beginning of June.

Over the summer, police cadets and neighbourhood officers have carried out Operation Scarecrow, which involved visiting allotments to hand out free padlocks to holders.

The padlocks are funded by Barry Coppinger, Police and Crime Commissioner for Cleveland.

Plot holders are also being offered crime prevention advice.

Acting Detective Chief Inspector Glen Westmoreland said: “Burglaries regularly occur at allotment sites due to the lure of often valuable equipment that is kept inside plots and the sheer number of premises that can be targeted at one time.

“It is really important that allotment holders keep their plots as secure as possible by removing any valuable items, padlocking doors and not leaving any tools lying around.”

Police and Crime Commissioner for Cleveland, Barry Coppinger, added: “Burglary is an intrusive and emotive crime which can leave people shocked and violated. It can also have financial implications for victims.

“By highlighting the issues around allotment crime, and providing things like padlocks to owners in an attempt to deter offenders, we hope to reduce the number of burglaries and the number of victims who are affected by this crime.”