1. ITV Report

Farmers warned to stay alert following spate of burglaries in Cumbria

Cumbria Police is appealing for witnesses following a spate of burglaries at farms in West Cumbria. Photo: ITV Border

Cumbria Police is appealing for witnesses and urging farmers to be more aware after a number of burglaries and attempted burglaries at farms in west Cumbria.

The burglaries have taken place at farms between 19 July to 24 July and a number of high-value items have been taken including quad bikes and a car.

Details of the burglaries are as follows:

1) Farm in Little Orton area: Workshop broken into overnight between 6pm and 8am (22-23 July). A red Honda quad bike was stolen along with strimmers and chainsaws. Incident number: 104 of 23 July 2017.

2) Farm in Longthwaite area, near Wigton: Break-in to the workshop but nothing stolen at some time between 9.15pm and 6.30am (19-20 July). Incident number: 45 of 20 July 2017.

3) Farm in Longthwaite area, near Wigton - Same address as (2) Stolen quad bike - taken some time between 11pm and 7.30am (22-23 July). Incident number: 100 of 23 July 2017.

4) Farm in High Longthwaite area, near Wigton. Stolen petrol lawnmower and petrol strimmer - taken some time between 8pm and 7am (19-20 July). Incident number: 180 of 22 July 2017.

5) Farm in High Longthwaite area, near Wigton. Entered farmhouse, took car key and stole Audi S4 some time between 5.45am and 7am (20 July). Incident number: 65 of 24 July 2017.

6) Same address as (5). Theft of work tools some time overnight (23/24 July). Incident number: 85 of 24 July, 2017.

7) Farm in Dovenby area, Cockermouth. Property stolen including a chainsaw between 8.30pm and 7.30am (23-24 July). Incident number: 65 of 24 July 2017.

8) Farm in Bridekirk area. Theft of strimmer and chainsaw some time overnight (23-24 July). The above incidents may be linked. Incident number: 86 of 24 July 2017.

Following one of the burglaries, a man and a woman were seen around the farm in the early hours of the morning.

The man was wearing a Nike hooded-top and Adidas tracksuit bottoms with stripes. He had brown hair and was of slim build.

The woman is described as smaller than the man, of medium build and with dark hair tied back in a bun or ponytail.

Cumbria Police have advised the following on farm building security:

  • Store all of your property indoors and keep your doors and windows locked.
  • Fit British Standard locks with strong locking bars to doors and windows. If padlocks are used make sure they are robust.
  • Upgrade your storage to reflect the value of your property.
  • Install sensor controlled ‘dusk till dawn’ security lights.
  • Consider CCTV as additional security for vulnerable areas.
  • Consider an audible and monitored intruder alarm system.

Officers investigating these incidents would like to hear from anyone who saw anything suspicious at any of these sites on the above dates or anyone who may have witnessed the vehicles stolen being transported away.

Anyone with more information is urged to contact the police on 101. Alternatively, Crimestoppers can be called anonymously on 0800 555 111.