In the last 12 months (2015-2016) there were 2947 burglaries at people’s homes in Northamptonshire, which is an increase on the 2259 seen in the preceding year (2014-2015).
In 2016, July and August saw the most burglaries (604), closely followed by January and February (528).
The joint Prevention and Community Protection department (Northamptonshire Police and Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service) would like to remind people that there are steps they can take to protect their homes against potential burglaries.
Prevention Team Leader Paul Golley said: “In the run up to Christmas, many people bring valuable items into their homes to give as gifts. It is always important to remind people at this time of year not to leave their presents on display, where they can easily be seen through a window or door.
“Also, once Christmas is over, it is always good to remember to carefully fold any cardboard boxes that may give away the kind of valuable new items you may have in your house, when put out for recycling.
“If people do know someone who is elderly or vulnerable, an extra show of Christmas kindness to them could be to offer some assistance in making sure they are secure and safe in their homes; are they locking their doors and keeping valuables safe, for example?”
Burglary prevention tips:
1) Keep doors and windows secure. Front and back doors should be kept locked at all times – even when you are home.
2) If you open windows for air, make sure they are closed before you go out or leave the room.
3) Keep keys and other valuables out of sight and reach of cat flaps, letterboxes and downstairs doors and windows.
4) Don’t forget garages, sheds and outbuildings – make sure they are locked and secure too. Make sure you don’t leave garden tools or ladders lying about in the garden as burglars could use these to break into your house.
5) Make sure your home is visible from the street by keeping bushes and fences low at the front.
6) Avoid sharing holiday plans on social media as this could tip off potential burglars about an empty property.
7) If going on holiday, remember to cancel deliveries such as milk or newspapers.
8) Make sure your home looks like someone is living in it. Use automatic timer-switches to turn your lights on when it gets dark.
9) When recycling, fold up any cardboard boxes that might advertise your Christmas gifts to thieves.
10) If you are going away, ensure your burglar alarm is set.