Police issue advice to Sheffield homeowners on garden security
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PCSO Alison Cundy explained how plants, water features, solar lighting and garden furniture can be very attractive to a thief.
"Extra attention should be given to passageways located at the side or rear of your home," she said. “Strong lockable high gates will deter thieves attempting to gain access to your rear garden.
“Fencing and walls can be given extra protection by fixing trellis on the top. This will collapse if someone tries to climb over it and the noise this causes could be enough to alert you or your neighbours and so deter a thief.
“If you are planning to build a path in your garden or around your property consider using gravel. The noise made when this is walked on can alert householders to any approach.
“Plants and trees can be very attractive to a thief and difficult to secure. If you are buying expensive plants or trees and intend planting them into plant pots then buy the heaviest you can.
"Expensive plants should be planted where they can be seen from the house or neighbouring properties."
She also urged residents to never leave spare keys hidden for family members because, if they are used by an intruder, it may invalidate your home insurance.
Exterior lights with dusk to dawn sensors are also recommended as an ‘excellent’ way to deter intruders.
"Using low wattage bulbs provides a cheap and effective security measure for your garden,” PCSO Cundy said.