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Issue:-23/24 December 2009
CHRISTMAS BURGLARY WARNING
IT can only
take three seconds for a burglar to break into your home is the
stark warning being put out by Merseyside Police in the run-up to
the festive season..
Officers are reminding residents to keep their homes secure to avoid
being targeted by opportunist burglars and losing precious gifts
Attempted burglaries traditionally increase over the festive season
as criminals are aware that homes are stocked with Christmas
To combat the burglaries, the Force has been conducting an operation
that has seen officers hitting the streets and making sure people
have locked their doors before going to bed.
Operation Handle involves officers walking down streets in hotspot
burglary areas trying the handles of doors in the late evenings and
through in to the night to ensure they are locked.
When a home is found insecure the officers alert the residents to
highlight the vulnerability of their premises and advise them of the
security measures they can put on place to ensure they don't become
victims of burglaries.
Since the operation began in mid-September officers have found a
significant number of doors, especially UPVC doors, unlocked.
For example, out of 17,184 handles tried across Anfield, Everton,
County and Kirkdale some 288 doors have been, todate, found to be
Merseyside Police Crime Reduction Superintendent Gary Hilton said:-
"As a Force we have been working hard to reduce burglaries all
year round and not just during the Christmas period when it is a
particularly distressing time of year to have your home broken into
and have valuables stolen. It is extremely upsetting for those who
have worked hard to buy their children and families gifts only to
have them stolen by burglars taking advantage of open doors or
windows. We have consistently reduced burglaries over the last six
years with 4,748 fewer homes being broken into and we have
introduced this pioneering initiative to help the trend to continue.
One in three burglaries occur as a result of an unlocked door or
window and we are still finding a worryingly high number of homes
that are insecure. So it is vital that people realise the importance
of keeping their windows and doors secure - until they do our
officers will continue to check that doors are locked. We urge
everyone to remember to keep their homes secure to ensure they have
a safe and happy Christmas."
Merseyside Police is also distributing door hanger safety notices to
reinforce the message that UPVC door handles need to be lifted and
the key turned for doors to be secure.
One couple from south Liverpool, who wish to remain anonymous, fell
victim to burglars after not locking their UPVC door properly and
have spoken of the trauma they experienced in the wake of the
The woman said:- "We went to bed, thinking we had securely
locked the front door. It wasn’t until I came down in the morning
and saw that my car was missing that I even realised we’d been
burgled. I didn’t understand how they had opened my locked front
door, but when the police officer arrived, he explained it to me.
Because we didn’t turn the key in the lock of our UPVC door, it was
shut but not locked, making it easy for someone to get in. My
husband’s jacket was hanging on the banister and the house and car
keys were in his pocket, along with his football season ticket. The
burglars took these and then stole my BMW. The police think they
pushed it to the bottom of the road before starting it, which is why
no one heard a thing. The burglars only came 10 feet into my house
but turned my life upside down. Because my car was stolen, I
couldn’t get to work until I sorted out a hire car, something I
didn’t realise wouldn’t be covered by my car insurance. We also had
to get all the house locks changed – I didn’t want to take the risk
that they may come back again and be able to just walk in. It wasn’t
just the inconvenience though, I felt really uncomfortable knowing
that someone had been in my home, especially because I was asleep
upstairs. I’ve definitely learned from this horrible experience and
now make sure all the doors are locked, even when I’m in the house."
People can avoid becoming a victim of burglary by following some
simple crime prevention advice:-
* If you have a UPVC door ensure that it is locked with the key. If
not, these doors are relatively easy to break into, but locking them
makes it very difficult.
* Keep your doors and windows locked when you're not in the house,
even if you're just going out for a minute.
* Keep sheds and garden stores locked. Otherwise not only can your
property get stolen a burglar could use your own tools to break into
* Install a security light to deter thieves.
* Don't leave your house or car keys in the back of the door lock or
on hooks where they can be seen from windows and doors.
* Ensure alleygates are locked at all times - any faults with
alleygates can be reported to the local council.
* Security mark all your property with your full postcode using a UV
marker pen or permanent marker.
* Don’t leave presents or valuables where they can be seen through
* Use internal timer switches for lamps, radios and TVs. This gives
the impression that someone is at home, which is particularly
important during the dark nights.
If you would like to know what police are doing to tackle crime in
your area, or would like a home security visit, call your
neighbourhood policing team on:- 0151 709 6010 or visit:-
merseyside.police.uk, where you
can see 24 safety tips in the advent calendar.
PRS for Music Announces the Top 100 Played Songs of the Year
PRS for Music
launches its first ever annual chart of Music Makers, listing the
100 most played songs of 2009. Gabriella Cilmi’s Sweet About
Me tops the list in a chart where girls dominate the top spots.
The top ten are as follows:-
Sweet About Me
Viva La Vida
The Time is Now
The Man Who Can’t Be Moved
Four solo female
artists appear in the top ten whereas the first solo male artist to
appear on the list is Timbaland, at no 11.
Take That, Rihanna and the Sugababes all feature heavily, each
getting four entries.
Moloko’s 2000 hit The Time Is Now is a surprise entry at number 3
largely thanks to it being played regularly on Sky Sports.
The list reveals other surprises including appearances from old time
favourites such as Duke Ellington and Cole Porter.
Several songs from adverts also feature in the list including:-
► Erni K Doe’s version of Here Come The Girls (no 38), used for the
Boots Office Party ad, 2007
► Eliza’s Aria from a little known opera by Soviet born composer
Elena Katz-Chernin features at no 47 thanks to the popular
advert for Lloyds TSB.
► ‘tain’t What You Do It’s The Way That You Do It features at no 56.
Bananarama & Fun Boy Three’s version being used for
B&Q advert in 2008.
► Duke Ellington’s Double Check Stomp is in the chart at no. 89 –
Homebase used this classic piece for an advertising
► Egyptian Reggae Jonathan Richman & the Modern Lovers (no. 59) was
used in a Weetabix advert, 2008
The list also features several all time classics including Mamma Mia
(Abba), Take On Me (A-Ha), Bohemian Rhapsody (Queen), Over the
Rainbow (various covers) and In The Summertime (Mungo Jerry).
The data is taken from number of plays and performances on-line,
live, on TV and Radio 9.
Council building closures during Christmas / New Year 2009
Direct Limited (LDL) Contact Centre is available as normal to take
calls 24 hours a day during the Christmas and New Year period.
As Christmas Day and Boxing Day fall on a Friday and Saturday this
year, Monday 28 December 2009 is a bank holiday.
All council administrative buildings including Customer Focus
Centres (CFCs) will be closed on the following public holidays:-
· Friday, 25 December 2009 - Christmas Day
· Monday, 28 December
2009 - Bank Holiday for Boxing Day
· Friday, 1 January
2010 - New Year's Day
On all other days over the holiday period council buildings will be
open as normal.
One Stop Shops will be closed on the following days:-
· Christmas Day - Friday 25 December 2009
· Boxing Day -
Saturday, 26 December 2009
· Bank Holiday -
Monday, 28 December 2009
· New Year’s Day -
Friday, 1 January 2009
· Saturday 2 January
All One Stop shops will be open from 9am-3pm on Thursday 24 December
From Tuesday, 29 December 2009 to Thursday, 31 December 2009:-
Walton, Speke (Parklands), Belle Vale and Knotty Ash will be closed.
City Centre, Broadway, Dingle, Garston, Old Swan, Kirkdale and
Wavertree will open from 9am to 3pm.
The 08 Place in Whitechapel will close at:-
· 4pm on Christmas Eve - Thursday, 24 December 2009.
· Closed Christmas
Day and Boxing Day.
· Close at 4pm on New
Year’s Eve - Thursday, 31 December 2009.
· Closed New Year’s
Day - Friday, 1 January 2009.
The 08 Place reopens on Saturday, 2 January 2009 from 9am to 6pm.