Have you been a victim of a burglary? Police in Welwyn Hatfield want to hear of your experiences.

Welwyn Hatfield Chief Inspector Pete Frost is encouraging the borough’s residents to fill in a quick survey which will help officers as they work hard to tackle local burglaries.

The survey forms part of Operation Guardian which is dedicated to tackling and preventing burglaries. It sees officers carrying out a combination of plain-clothes and high-visibility patrols in hotspot areas.

The survey asks residents how safe they feel in the community and it provides any victims of burglary with the opportunity to explain their experiences. There is also an option to share any general feedback about local policing.

Ch Insp Pete Frost said: “Burglaries and thefts from gardens can often increase at this time of year when the weather’s nicer and we want to take a preventative approach.

“I want to make sure that we are giving the best service possible to local residents and having your feedback will help us achieve that.

“We recognise the devastating impact that burglaries have on victims and we are committed to tackling them. This survey will help us get a better understanding of how and where we should be focusing our efforts.

“The survey is quick to fill in and I encourage all residents across Welwyn Hatfield to take a moment to complete it. To fill in the survey, please visit bit.ly/guardian-welhat.

“I would also like to remind residents that we have an abundance of crime prevention advice on our website at herts.police.uk/crimeprevention and this includes tips on how you can prevent burglars from targeting your home.”

A QR code for the survey is pictured below.

Welwyn Hatfield Times: QR code for Welwyn Hatfield surveyQR code for Welwyn Hatfield survey (Image: Hertfordshire Constabulary)

Crime prevention advice

Top tips to make your garden and outbuildings more secure:

  • Always lock your shed, preferably with two 'hasp and staple' locks (one near the top and one near the bottom of the door) or use or an alarmed padlock.
  • Secure your rear garden by locking entry gates with a padlock.
  • Burglars can use garden tools to break in, so make sure you securely lock away any tools after use.
  • Ensure boundary fences are secure and in good condition. Spiky plants along garden boundaries are good additional deterrents.
  • Tools and gardening equipment should be visibly marked with your postcode and house number — this can deter thieves and help police identify the rightful owner.
  • Remember to lock your garage door securely. Metal ‘up and over’ doors can be secured with extra locks fitted either side and/or a floor-mounted locking ‘T’ bar with a closed shackle padlock. Wooden garage doors can be secured with two substantial ‘hasps and staple’ locks and closed shackle padlocks (your local DIY store can advise on the most secure options).
  • Make access to the rear of your property difficult, keep rear/side gates closed and locked and ensure boundary walls/fences are in good repair.
  • Keep wheelie bins secured so they cannot be moved or used as climbing aids.
  • Plant defensive spiky plants under windows such as berberis, roses and pyracantha. 
  • Most bicycles are stolen from home so ensure they are kept in secure sheds, outbuildings and garages. Consider installing ground anchors if you have a concrete floor. If not, look for security rated products specifically for wooden and metal sheds.
  • Take extra security precautions for storing expensive bikes, it is recommended that they are security marked and registered with bikeregister.com