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Garden theft prevention tips from the UK Police

Your garden can make your home more secure - from the police

Making your garden secure could prevent an intruder from entering your home.

Check for weak spots where a thief could get into your garden, for example, a low or sagging fence, or a back gate with a weak lock.

A thorny hedge along the boundary of your property can put thieves off. But make sure that passers-by can still see the front of your home so that a burglar can't work without being seen.

Consider using gravel for pathways as it is impossible to walk on without making a sound.

Hints and tips for securing your garden

Front garden
  •  Gates, fencing, walls orhedges should not be more than 1 metre high so that the front of your property can be seen by passers-by.
  •  If you have a gardengate, keep it closed.
  •   Fit dusk till dawn security lighting.
Rear garden
  • Rear gardens should havefencing at least six feet high. Trellis work on top of fencing panels is not only decorative, it is also difficult to climb over as it breaks easily and noisily.
  • Garden gates should beat least the same height and strength as your fencing with hinges securely attached to the gateposts. Locks/padlocks should be of good quality with concealed screws.
  • Low or damaged fencing allows easy access to your property.
  • Garden sheds should bekept locked - with a padlock or mortise deadlock as they often contain tools suitable for breaking into your home and valuable equipment such as lawnmowers.
  • Do not leave ladders lying around as a burglar might use it to climb into an upstairs window. Keep them locked in a garage or shed, or chained to a wall.
  • Secure garden furniture and wheelie bins so that they cannot be used to climb on to gain access to upstairs windows.
  • Do not leave tools,gardening equipment or debris lying around in the garden to be used to smash windows.
  •  Install security lights to illuminate your garden - they can help deter thieves.  (These are two types available; lights fitted with sodium tubes that come on automatically during the hours of darkness and turn themselves off when it gets light, or lights operated by sensors that come on when movement is detected)
  • The planting of a prickly hedge, such as firethorn, climbing rose or hawthorn, against existing fencing will act as a powerful deterrent. More information about plants that can help protect your property is available on our website.
  •  Don't build pergolas orgazebos close to the house allowing access to upper windows.
  •  Do not use barbed wire,razor wire or broken glass - you could be held legally responsible for any injuries caused. Prickle strips are a legal and safer alternative to the traditional use of gripper rods and glass on exterior walls and fences. It can be bought relatively cheaply on the Internet and comes in a variety ofcolours.