WINSLEY NEIGHBOURHOOD WATCH – A particularly unpleasant burglary

WINSLEY NEIGHBOURHOOD WATCH — Thursday 24th August

A particularly unpleasant burglary

Following yesterday’s NW circular, I am afraid that I have to report a truly shocking crime which occurred in Winsley at about 12.00 noon yesterday (Wednesday). A house situated near the roundabout at the end of the bypass was burgled in a way which was very frightening for the lady concerned.

The resident was alone and, as this was unusual at that time of day, it would appear that the house had been observed for some time. She answered a knock at the back door, to be confronted by a man wearing a mask. The lady recalls that he affected a persistent cough, presumably trying to indicate that he was wearing the mask for health reasons. He was of Middle Eastern appearance. He asked her about the possibility of camping in the area, but while she was answering his query she became aware of noises in the house. She is reasonably sure that there were two men in her bedroom, which is situated downstairs. They had entered via a window at the side of the house, which was closed, but not locked. As the men ran from the house she noticed that they were all wearing masks and armed with crowbars

The culprits had taken a considerable sum of money. together with a gold watch and a pair of gold cuff-links belonging to her husband. Both items were of great sentimental value and the watch was extremely valuable. They made their escape along the edge of a field behind the adjoining houses and jumped into a car which was parked on a nearby track.

The resident called the Police immediately. They attended promptly and have been extremely helpful.

It appears that there have been similar robberies over a period of time in the wider area, notably in Swindon. The criminals appear to be targeting people of Asian origin, believing that they are likely to have gold jewellery in the house.

May I stress the importance of keeping all downstairs windows locked even when you are in the house, and all outside doors securely closed. Also, please be alert to the possibility of being distracted by a caller; crimes are often committed in this way.

Fortunately, such incidents are extremely rare in the village and surrounds, but, as yesterday’s shocking incident proves, we cannot be too careful.

Roy Ludlow

24th August 2017