Advice from Thames Valley Police on keeping safe this winter
25th October 2013
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Winter officially begins when the clocks go back an hour; this is the perfect season to check your house is not vulnerable to opportunist thieves.

Thames Valley Police is working in partnership with Community Safety Partnerships across the Thames Valley to keep you safe as the darker nights draw in.

People across the Thames Valley can pick up security advice from the Thames Valley Police website; about the importance of not leaving your house in darkness, as well as via our social media sites.

Ch Supt Tim De Meyer, head of Neighbourhood Policing & Partnerships said: "People who work full time, and usually leave and return from work in the dark, are more likely to fall victim of opportunist burglars. It is vital that we engage with those at risk of burglary and this year we will be encouraging people to look at our Twitter sites and website for crime prevention information. Officers will be patrolling neighbourhoods and burglary hot spot areas identifying houses that could benefit from improved home security and posting a postcard size leaflet through the door advising people to contact them for further crime reduction advice. We will also be using businesses in the area to ensure our message gets out to their staff.

If no light is on in your home, curtains are not drawn, and no car is in the drive, it's an obvious sign to an opportunist burglar that no-one is in. At this time of the year more than any other it pays to secure your home. There are a number of simple and low-cost or free ways to do this, all of which will help reduce the chance of your home becoming the next target.

Visit a local retailer to pick up a 24 hour segment timer for under £5. The timer can be used with a lamp, radio or TV to give the impression that someone is at home.

Remember to use an energy efficient light bulb

Register your valuables on - its free and takes just a few minutes and if your valuables are stolen, will allow you to tell the police, your insurer, and the second-hand trade to assist in recovering your property and catch the thief

Keep valuables out of sight

Look your doors and windows, if you have a UPVC door make sure you have double locked it You can also follow us on Twitter @_ThamesVP alternatively you can give us a "like" on Facebook at

For regular updates on crime and disorder in your area you can sign up to Thames Valley Alert.

For further crime reduction advice you can also visit our website or call and ask to speak to a Crime Reduction Adviser via the 24-hour Police Enquiry Centre on 101.

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