Hertfordshire police launch campaign to keep gardens safe

PUBLISHED: 10:44 22 March 2016

Police have launched 'Operation Gnome' urging Hertfordshire residents to keep their gardens secure

Police have launched 'Operation Gnome' urging Hertfordshire residents to keep their gardens secure


Hertfordshire Constabulary has launched its seasonal campaign to keep gardens and allotments safe this spring.

The ‘Operation Gnome’ campaign reminds residents to keep their gardens, sheds and allotments secure.

At this time of year more people are using gardens and allotments across the county, as well as buying new gardening tools and equipment.

It is traditionally a time when burglars target sheds, garages and outbuildings looking for power tools, bikes and other expensive items. They also look for tools left in gardens such as spades, garden forks and ladders, which can be used to help them break into homes.

Police have offered the following advice for residents to make their gardens and outbuildings more secure:

* Always lock sheds, preferably with two ‘hasp and staple’ locks (one near the top and one near the bottom of the door) or use an alarmed padlock.

* Secure rear gardens by locking entry gates with a padlock.

* Burglars can use garden tools to break in, so make sure tools are securely locked away 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 the postcode and house number - this can deter thieves and help police identify the rightful owner.

* Remember to lock garage doors 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.

Local DIY stores can advise on the most secure lock options.

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