Central Bedfordshire

Neighbourhood Watch

Promoting Safer Communities in Central Bedfordshire
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Archived Ringmaster Messages

Previous Ringmaster messages retained for information and useful advice.

25 April 2013

Crime Plummets Again in Bedfordshire

“Less crime means fewer victims” says Chief Constable Alf Hitchcock after Bedfordshire Police recorded some of the largest reductions in the country in the 12 month period to December 2012, particularly in key offences such as burglary and violent crime.

The dramatic fall in overall crime, 15% compared with a national average of 8%, follows the previous three months which also saw a huge reduction across the county.

“The figures published today continue to  show the force is achieving the aim of fighting crime and protecting the public ensuring residents of Bedfordshire are less likely to be a victim of crime than the national average,” said Mr Hitchcock. “We are not complacent but the significant fall in crime is testimony to the great job the men and women of Bedfordshire Police are doing, day in day out, to fight crime and protect the public against a backdrop of real cuts to resources.”

“For some time now our priority has been focused on tackling and reducing the number of homes broken into across the county and these figures show we have achieved this with huge reductions in house burglaries. The force is also ranked second highest when it comes to reducing break-ins to other buildings such as sheds, outbuildings and business premises.”

“Bedfordshire is a force that continues to punch above its weight however we can only do this with the support of the public and volunteers, including the Special Constabulary and Cadets, who we rely on to help prevent crime.”

Bedfordshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner Olly Martins added; “The officers and staff of Bedfordshire Police are to be congratulated on another good year of cutting crime, particularly burglary, even at a time of government funding cuts and organisational upheaval. The recent success of Operation Sabre, including significant numbers of arrests across the county for offences related to burglary and handling, demonstrates the Force’s determination to take the fight against crime to the criminals, especially those offenders who cause our communities most harm. This is how we will continue to cut crime and make our county safer.”

Bedfordshire has seen some of the largest reductions in crime rates in England and Wales including:

• 15% reduction in overall crime – 4th largest reduction in England and Wales
• 14% reduction in Domestic Burglary – the 11th largest reduction (8% decrease nationally)
• 28% reduction in other burglary – the 2nd highest reduction
• 18% reduction in Violence Against the Person – the 3rd highest reduction (6% decrease nationally)
• 17% reduction in offences against vehicles – the 15th highest reduction
• 15% reduction in Criminal Damage – the 8th highest reduction (8% decrease nationally)

Bedfordshire’s overall crime rate for the period was 59.7 crimes per 1000 population, below the England and Wales rate of 67.0 crimes per 1000 population.

10 July 2013

Suspicious Telephone Call Warning

A resident in Bedfordshire has contacted us to report a suspicious telephone call. The company called, claiming to be working with the Police in the local area providing crime reduction products. The caller tried to make an appointment to visit the home and asked a number of questions about the resident and who else lived in the house. The resident became suspicious of the caller and refused to provide any personal details, or to make an appointment.


Bedfordshire Police do not employ any private companies to undertake home security surveys. If you have concerns about your home security you can speak to a Crime Reduction Officer by calling 101.


Do not disclose personal details over the phone. If you wish to purchase home security products always get at least three written quotes from registered companies. Check with your local Trading Standard Approved Traders list. Ask friends and neighbours to recommend a suitable company. Never agree to buy goods or services as a result of a cold call to your home. If you are interested, ask for them to send you details so that you have time to consider before making a purchase. If you make an appointment for someone to visit, arrange for a friend or family member to be with you when they call. Do not pay for work until it has been completed to an acceptable standard.

25 July 2013

Beware Bank Card Scam


Police in Bedfordshire are asking residents to be extra vigilant when giving bank information over the telephone after receiving several reports of a scam. The two most recent reports were received on July 23 and July 17 after residents in Houghton Regis and Dunstable received telephone calls from bogus police officers telling the victims that their bank details had been cloned. The offenders told the victims that they were police officers from the Metropolitan Police Force and that they needed to confirm details of the victim’s banking details and would call around to their home to collect the original bank cards.

The same or the following day a man posing as a police officer then attended the victim’s home and collected the bank cards which were then used fraudulently.

A further four incidents following the same pattern have also been recorded within the last few months and appear to target older residents in the Dunstable and Houghton Regis areas.

Mark Collis, of Bedfordshire Police’s Crime Bureau, is keen to warn residents of the scam and urges them not to give bank information to anyone who telephones their home; even if they say they are a police officer. Mr Collis said: “These offenders are very plausible when they speak to people over the telephone and even give telephone numbers to the victims to check their credentials. I would urge people to contact their local force using 101 to verify the identity of any person telephoning your home and not to hand any bank cards over to anyone calling at your home. You should contact your bank directly if you think your cards have been compromised and never give anyone your pin number or your bank security answers as these will allow them to access your account. If you are at all concerned about telephone calls or callers to your home who ask for your bank details you can always go into your local police station or bank in person and speak to a representative direct to verify what is happening.”

Anyone with information relating to these crimes can contact Bedfordshire Police on 101, or text information to 07786 200011. You can also contact the independent crime fighting charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.