Police have issued a warning to horse owners and enthusiasts after a series of break-ins targeting North Yorkshire stables and tack rooms.
Over the last few weeks, a number of equestrian items have been stolen – including saddles, girths, bridles, breastplates and numnahs – particularly in the southern area of the borough of Harrogate.
Some of the recent incidents include:
On Saturday 17 September, a large amount of tack was stolen from a tack room near Little Ribston.
Overnight on 21/22 September, outbuildings near Kirkby Overblow were targeted, and a number of items, including tack, were stolen.
Overnight on 27/28 September, stables near Tockwith were targeted, and small items stolen. The same night, stables near Askham Richard were broken into, with damage caused and a generator stolen.
On Monday 10 October, two saddles were taken in a burglary at North Deighton.
PC David Mackay, of North Yorkshire Police’s Rural Taskforce, said:
In light of these incidents, I am urging horse owners to take immediate steps to ensure tack is protected from thieves. Make sure you have a record of any serial numbers, register your property, and be vigilant – report any suspicious activity to the police.
If someone offers you second-hand tack for sale, and it seems too good to be true, consider that you might be buying stolen property. Check serial numbers, and if in doubt, ask the person for proof of ownership.
Free property marking sessions will be held in the near future, and people can contact the Rural Taskforce to discuss this and other crime prevention measures.
Horse owners and enthusiasts are also invited to follow North Yorkshire Police’s Horsewatch scheme on social media – via NYP Horsewatch on Facebook, and @NYP_Horsewatch on Twitter – so they can find out about future events and be made aware of any equestrian crimes in their area. To get in touch with the scheme, email email@example.com
PC Hannah McPeake, who co-ordinates the Horsewatch scheme, said:
Preventing crime and deterring criminals is very important, and we are encouraging all equestrian businesses and horse owners to check their yard security and think carefully about how to protect their property.
North Yorkshire Police’s Rural Taskforce works proactively alongside colleagues, partners and volunteers to increase engagement with rural communities, target criminals who offend in our rural areas, and provide bespoke crime prevention advice to those at risk of criminality.
You can meet members of the Taskforce at community events throughout the year, including markets, auctions and shows. You can also follow the team’s work on Twitter at @NYPRuralTF or via the North Yorkshire Police Rural Taskforce Facebook page.