Police aim to improve area of town

Blyth police officers and police cadets during the initiative at Cowpen Quay, which took place over the weekend.
Blyth police officers and police cadets during the initiative at Cowpen Quay, which took place over the weekend.

A police initiative tackling a burglary hotspot in Blyth took place over the weekend.

It was designed to build on work in the area of Cowpen Quay to improve the neighbourhood and reduce the number of burglaries.

This part of the town has been identified as a particularly deprived area in Northumberland, with two streets within the Blyth Terraces area having a disproportionately high level of burglaries.

The initiative on Saturday and Sunday involved Blyth Neighbourhood Policing Team, special constables, volunteer police cadets and the crime prevention design advisor, together with ICCQ (Improving Croft and Cowpen Quay) – a volunteer organisation supported by the local authority – and street representative volunteers from the area.

Sergeant Jill Hall from the policing team, said: “All 273 properties within the two streets identified were visited and an environmental survey completed with residents.

“We aimed to work with the community to help improve the area by addressing their issues utilising the My Street app during the survey.

“Residents were also provided with a My Street card to help and encourage them to download the app and report any future problems affecting them, their home and their street. This included anti-social behaviour, fly tipping, nuisance issues and much more.

“If this is managed robustly, it is more likely to prevent further decline in the future and lead to a better neighbourhood.

“Our vision is that by improving the area, the number of burglaries will be reduced – together with the demand on police and partners – giving local people an improved quality of life.”

Officers also provided residents with the SelectaDNA crime prevention kits and assisted them in marking valuables in their homes.

These included mobiles, laptops, iPods, tvs, ornaments and jewellery. Using the SelectaDNA microdot technology gives individual property a minute and unique reference number that is kept on a secure database.

Sergeant Hall added: “We initially focused on previously burgled premises and any vulnerable residents or isolated locations as a priority.

“The use of SelectaDNA reduces the chances of being burgled by 83 per cent and helps protect homes. Signs were displayed as a visible deterrent to show the addresses are protected and a DNA code registered on the database.

“This means that if any of the marked property is stolen, it is identifiable to the address. Any stolen property recovered by police can be checked for a microdot and if found, can more easily be reunited with its rightful owner.”

For more crime prevention home security advice, visit www.northumbria.police.uk/advice_and_information/crime_prevention/home_security

Follow the Blyth Neighbourhood Policing team on Twitter at twitter.com/NPNBlythNPT

Police are appealing for witnesses after a front window was smashed at a house in Croft Road, Blyth, at 6.25am on Saturday. The damage was caused by a brick and the offender made off unseen.

Call police on 101 – quoting reference 310 of 01/04/17 – or independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111.