Don't become a victim of crime this spring

Published Tuesday, 30th March 2021

Now that the lighter nights are here, householders across Hartlepool are being urged to take steps to protect their gardens and outbuildings this spring.

The Hartlepool Community Safety Team’s Victim Services Officer Jane Munden has issued a series of simple crime prevention tips to help people safeguard their property and possessions.

“Now that the clocks have gone forward and the weather is starting to improve more of us are getting out into our gardens.

“Don’t forget about your garden and outbuildings when you are thinking about home security. The equipment in your garden is not only often expensive but some items, such as garden tools, can easily be used by burglars to break into your home unless they are put away,” she said.

Jane is advising householders to take the following measures:

  • Install security lighting to illuminate the outside of your home, with dusk-to-dawn lighting preferred.
  • Keep the boundary low at the front of your property so that would-be burglars are visible and can’t hide, but keep walls, fences and hedges at the back high. Consider adding trellis and prickly plants to make them difficult to climb over.
  • Don’t leave anything lying around in your garden and, in particular, always make sure ladders and tools are stored away.
  • Keep garden sheds and side gates locked. Chain and lock valuable items inside a shed to a fixed point and security mark them with your house number and postcode using paint, an engraver or a UV pen.
  • Consider installing a shed alarm.
  • Consider using gravel for paths and driveways to make it harder for would-be burglars to get about unheard.
  • Photograph valuable items so they can be identified.
  • Be clear on what your insurance policy covers in your garden.
  • Secure your bins together or to a fixed point to prevent them being used by intruders as climbing aids.
  • Always keep house doors and windows locked when out in the garden.
  • Make sure your garage is locked at all time and ensure that you have good quality locks. Consider extending your house alarm or have an intruder alarm fitted to your garage. Secure valuables inside the garage to a fixed point.

For further information, or to request crime prevention advice/assistance or victim support, contact the Hartlepool Community Safety Team on (01429) 523100 or

Alternatively, you can contact Cleveland Police on 101 (non-emergency) or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.