After several previously failed attempts, we understand that a determined group of raiders from the West of Ireland are planning a targeted mid afternoon heist in central Dublin today. The are expected to use the motorway network for a fast getaway but they may also take refuge in a number of safe houses in the area marked with green and red flags.
Many dispute the true ownership of the targeted silverware with other groups reportedly also laying claim to be its true home.
Keep an eye out for gangs of highly decorated supporters from both sides.
Be prepared to wish them well and expect cheering shouting to emerge from in front of TV screens across the neighbourhood.
We wish the best of luck to both Dublin and Mayo this afternoon.
May the best team win.
I hope that you are enjoying the summer – sunshine, clouds and rain.
I am sure that you will have noticed the roads are quieter as many of our neighbours are on holidays. Let’s make sure that they come home to a safe and secure house by keeping a close eye on suspicious vehicles, tradespeople, collectors and listening out for alarms.
Bogus trades are a particular concern this time of year as they use their presence to identify houses that are empty. If you see bins left out after they have been collected, kindly bring them back in to avoid advertising that a house is empty.
If you are going on holidays – leave a key with a trusted neighbour or friend and let other neighbours know who has this in case of emergency. Travel safe and be prepared to do the same for your neighbours on your return.
We had a good turnout for the talk from Sgt. Vincent Connolly last month. Thanks to Liam and Carmel and all for holding the fort while I was travelling and to Shivaun for taking notes to share with you all.
Some notes and suggestions below from the talk. Of course we do not want to live in a fortress take sensible suggestions from below that suit your needs.
- Most burglaries are opportunistic – open cars, bicycles left unlocked, doors and windows left open (particularly in the hot weather) – use of tools from your shed if unlocked to assist break-in. Sounds obvious but try not to be an easy target in this regard.
- A good way to assess the security of your house is to look at your house from the road and consider – if I was locked out, how would I break in to my house? Have I left bins or chairs to enable someone to hop over my side gate? Have I left tools accessible in my shed that could be used to force a window or door?
- Do trees and shrubs provide natural shelter for would be burglars while they attempt to break in? Keeping these pruned may allow your neighbours and passers by better visibility of what is happening outside the front of your house. Or consider defensive planting – holly or something prickly if you have potential access from a rear or the side.
- Consider bringing your side gate forward in line with the front of your house to remove another blind spot. An arched side gate is more difficult to climb.
- Keep your keys safe at night. Do not store near windows and doors. Consider fitting a deflector on letterbox or consider a sealed letterbox from An Post.
- External lights at night – make your home less attractive – consider LED lights – dusk till dawn. LIDL and ALDI often have ‘fake TVs’ that simulate TV flickering in rooms for when you are away. Use your alarm.
- Beware of distraction burglaries or bogus trades
- Distraction burglaries – can I use your phone? can I get a glass of water? Can I ring an ambulance? Do not let a stranger into your house.
- Bogus trades – also an excuse to access your house. Special pricing offers, doing a job for your neighbour. Very often charge excessive rates and have been known to bring people to ATM to get cash out. Only use trades that are known to you.
- Bogus collectors – another reason to access houses and check for empty houses. Also very many are for profit rather than for charity.
- When going on holiday:
- Tidy the garden and mow lawns
- Do not leave bins out
- Leave keys with friends
- Inform neighbours
- Cancel deliveries
- Manage post
- Lights on timer
- Do not advertise by posting on social media that you will be away.
- If you come across a burglar – do not engage. Phone 999 or 112 and alert the Gardaí. Get yourself to safety and inform a neighbour.
- A fire plan is as important as a security plan. Make sure that you can get easily out even when your home is locked. Test and maintain alarms and plan your escape route.
- Do not keep cash in the home. If you have valuables, take photos of jewellery and keep a list of valuables. Consider marking property with your Eircode using a UV pen.
- In summary:
- Secure all windows and doors
- Use alarm
- Light up
- Store keys safely
- Record details of valuables and don’t keep lots of cash
Thanks to Sgt Connolly and Garda Alex McDermott for their time and thank you for your continued support.
Below are the minutes of the 2017 AGM of the Pines and Hadleigh Neighbourhood Watch.
The meeting was held in St. Brígids Parish Centre, Beechpark Castleknock at 8.15pm Monday 24 April 2017.
Attendance: Approximately 40 neighbours plus Garda Alex McDermott from Blanchardstown Garda Station.
Our Neighbourhood Watch AGM will take place next Monday night at 8.15pm in the Parish centre in Beechpark.
In addition to our previously published agenda we hope to have some representation from the local Garda Community Policing Team on hand to answer any questions.
We are hoping for a good turnout so we would love to see you there if it suits.
- Review of 2016 AGM minutes and actions.
- Review of activity and the work of the Neighbourhood Watch group for the past year.
- Financial update and report.
- Plans for 2017 / 18
- Confirmation of Area coordinator, street coordinator, secretary and treasurer roles.
- Q&A with local community policing team (subject to operational availability)
- Any other business.
You can download a copy of the financial report and last year’s minutes here if you want to do some pre-reading. As always we are interested in any suggestions on how we can improve the scheme and any extra volunteers who want to get involved.