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Police clampdown over rural thieves in Much Wenlock

By Rory Smith | South Shropshire | Crime | Published:

A major police operation took place in Much Wenlock to tackle rural crime.

Officers from Broseley and Much Wenlock Safer Neighbourhood Team, the local policing sergeant, officers from the Local Policing Priorities Team and a police dog handler were joined by two marked patrol cars, a marked 4x4 and two unmarked patrol cars around the town on Monday.

The force said the purpose of the operation was to be a visible presence in the area of the A458, the B4368, B4378 and the B4371 following a number of burglaries targeting quad bikes, mountain bikes and power tools.

Officers took details of vehicles reported as being seen in suspicious circumstances but no further action was taken.

With the incidents taking place overnight and during the day, officers involved had details of vehicles recently reported as being seen in suspicious circumstances by residents.

Police checked a number of vehicles but no further action was taken.

Similar operations during the day and night are being planned by the police for other areas of south Shropshire in the coming months.

Suspicious

PCSO Mal Goddard, said: “The marked vehicles were able to provide a visible presence and deterrence, while the unmarked vehicles were able to patrol the routes and keep an eye out for any suspicious activity.

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“The dog handler was available so that a full search of any suspicious vehicles stopped could be conducted.”

Much Wenlock’s Shropshire Councillor, David Turner, said burglaries had become a significant problem in the area and residents had arranged two crime prevention meetings with members of the force as a response.

He said in one recent case, a farmer had their quad bike and replacement quad bike stolen within weeks of each other.

“I think it’s really important that police maintain a presence within communities as much as they can. It puts residents and farmers at ease as they have a great deterrent effect,” he said.

“It’s been suggested to me that drones are being used to scout vulnerable farms and houses, and there were eight sets of local theft reports over the recent bank holiday made to the National Farmers Union – we know quad bike thefts are a particular problem. These crime prevention nights are for the local community to help combat this ongoing battle.”

The first crime prevention meeting is taking place on June 25 at Shipton Village Hall, with the second two days later at Church Preen, both starting at 7.30pm.

Rory Smith

By Rory Smith
Reporter - @rorysmith_star

Trainee news reporter based at the Shropshire Star's Ketley office in Telford.

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