Neighbourhood Watch

Todwick Neighbourhood Watch Newsletter

December 2017

Welcome to all those villagers who have signed up to the Todwick Neighbourhood Watch since our last newsletter in September 2017. We hope that you find these newsletters informative and useful and we always value your information and feedback. We never publish anyone’s name, address or any other private details.

Please be aware and wide awake!

As we approach Christmas, no doubt many of us will be busy with writing cards, buying presents, sorting out lights and possibly a tree. Often a time of intense activity? But be aware, particularly when shopping that you keep your eyes and ears open as there are thieves out there just waiting to relieve you of the goods you have just bought, thieve from your bag or wallet, or ‘pick a pocket or two’. It may sound a bit Dickensian... but it still does happen – even in 2017. Busy shopping centres and places where people window shop are some of the favourite places for theft. Car parks are also target areas. You load your shopping into the boot of the car, lock it and go to do more shopping. Who is watching you? Thieves are invariably opportunists. Don’t leave your mobile on the table when you stop for a drink of tea or coffee. Don’t leave your bags out of sight. They will be out watching and waiting for a potential victim. Be on your guard.

Funding

At the last Annual General Meeting, the subject of funding of your village Neighbourhood Watch scheme was aired. The scheme has been running since July 2006, some 11+ years. So far we have managed to run the scheme at no cost to any member. We have managed to raise funds from a few sources including Todwick Parish Council, to whom we are most grateful for their patronage. We have sufficient available funds for the immediate future, but we need to start to look towards the longer term to ensure continuity of the scheme. If you have an idea of how we can raise funds, please let me know either by email, telephone or in the street.

Crime rises by 10%

Reported crime in Todwick is, for the first 6 months of 2017, tending to follow this trend. I need to stress that this is only relating to reported crime. If it is not reported on 101, then from a police point of view it hasn’t happened and nothing will ever be done about it. This is self defeating.

I am grateful to one of our street co-ordinators who kindly provided me with a copy of the Rotherham Record from mid July 2017. An article relates to a survey of people living in the Rotherham Borough regarding their thoughts on the reintroduction of Neighbourhood Policing. Todwick Neighbourhood Watch was asked to take part in the survey. Unfortunately, there were only a limited number of forms provided so we had to allocate them to cover as wide a cross-section of the village as possible. Thank you to all those who took part. For those who wished to participate but did not get a paper based questionnaire, local press did advertise that there was also an on-line survey. The general consensus of opinion was that a return of the local community policing was essential and needed to be addressed as soon as possible. The first signs of new growth were on 12th November when 4 of the South Yorkshire Police attended the Remembrance Service at the village war memorial.

Generally speaking, participants wanted a more visible policing presence; a reduction in anti-social behaviour {the numerically highest problem in Todwick}, an ability to communicate on a face to face basis with the police; and drop-in sessions also came into the equation.

Home Office minister Sarah Newton MP has stated that Neighbourhood Watch has an important role to play in tackling crime. Perhaps someone in authority has finally realised what Neighbourhood Watch can do? We are all the eyes and ears in our community!

Dog & cat theft

Many residents in Todwick have dogs or cats as pets and in many cases they are looked on as members of the family. In 2016, nearly 1800 instances of dog theft were reported to the Police across England and Wales. The Dogs Trust said the most common breed of dogs reported as stolen was the Staffordshire Bull-terrier, followed by the Jack Russell, Chihuahua & the Bulldog. Homes and gardens were the most frequent places where animals were stolen, often when the animals had been left unsupervised. Cats are not exempt from theft especially the more expensive breeds. The thieves do not care. They thieve to order. Protect your Pet.

Doorstep crime

Most doorstep crime relies on good mannered residents who answer their door to strangers. Two more roads in Todwick are joining a scheme called No Cold Calling Some examples of doorstep tricks are – collecting for a bogus charity – insisting a home repair is imperative and overcharging you– pretending to be a policeman or meter reader – distracting you whilst someone else robs you. Doorstep criminals are very convincing actors. Don’t be taken in by them. If you are not sure call for help.

Cybercrime

Just a quick reminder to be aware of fraudsters who create authentic looking emails purporting to be from genuine companies, or even someone you know, in order to defraud you These emails are designed to infect your computer with malicious software and steal sensitive information such as financial information and passwords. Look for mis-spelt words. Look for language that would not be used by the true person if they were writing to you – often the salutation is a good indicator. Never open an attachment unless you are absolutely certain that it is genuine.

Crime statistics for Todwick

The system for reporting up to date crime stats is still not satisfactorily resolved. But for the 3-month period July, August and September 2017 inclusive Todwick has had the following issues reported:

Criminal damage/Arson

4

Public Order

1

Burglary

5

Antisocial behaviour

7

Other theft

6

Violence & sexual crime

8 but some may be of an historic nature.

Total reported issues in Todwick up to the end of September is 80 offences in 2017.

Just a brief reminder – if your uPVC door locks are not up to the new Euro specifications, please contact Norman for further details on this subject.

Many thanks to all the villagers who have contributed to our quarterly newsletters. Also, many thanks to all the 22 street co-ordinators who have delivered your newsletters.

Have a merry and safe Christmas and happy New Year.

Contact information

S. Y. Police non-emergency calls to report crime or give information dial 101

S. Y. Police / Ambulance / Fire & Rescue emergency dial 999

Crimestoppers to give information about crime (you do not have to give your name) dial 0800 555 111 freephone open Mon-Fri 8 am to 10 pm & Sunday 10 am to 4 pm

Action Fraud this is the government run reporting centre for fraud. Calls can be made on 0300 123 2040 anonymously or text on 0300 123 2050

Streetpride part of Rotherham Borough Council. For most general problems with bin emptying, damaged bins, street lighting, potholes & other problems associated with roads & pavements telephone 01709 336003

Electricity emergency 0800 375 675

Thanks to all the villagers who have provided details of incidents and issues.

Thanks also to Sheila Pantry for ensuring that our village website www.todwick.org.uk shows our newsletters as well as details of upcoming village events.