Police are asking Telford residents to stay vigilant after a series of attempted ‘distraction thefts’
Five incidents that we believe to be related have been reported across Telford. All took place on Wednesday 17 January between about 3.30pm and 7pm.
During these incidents a man – in three cases a group of two or three men – visited the home of an elderly or vulnerable person and falsely claimed to be from a water supplier, investigating a burst pipe or similar emergency. This claim has been an attempt to gain access to the property.
In four of these incidents, access to the property was granted by the residents. It appears that the visitors then searched the properties. One of the residents later noticed that some of their possessions were missing.
While these incidents are being investigated there will be an increased police presence in the area. Officers are conducting house-to-house enquiries and are also urging residents to come forward if they have seen or heard anything suspicious.
Detective Sergeant Jonathan Taylor said: “We believe that these are incidents of distraction theft, where a bogus visitor pretends to be an official to gain access to a home, then steals from the occupant. In general, these thieves can be very convincing and will go a long way to make you think they have a legitimate reason for being there.
“Please remember that officials from gas, electricity, phone and water companies shouldn’t need to come into your home (for example, to test water pressure or repair a leak), even in an emergency. If for some reason they do need access, they should always send you a letter in advance to make an appointment. They should also invite you to check their ID card when they visit.
“If you’re in any doubt at all about a doorstep visitor, shut the door to them (don’t feel rude, legitimate staff will understand) while you phone the company they claim to be from and verify that the visitor is genuine. Use a phone number you know to be correct – not one the visitor gives you.
“If you live around Telford and you know an elderly or vulnerable person who might benefit from this information, please let them know to be vigilant about bogus visitors.”
If you’ve seen or heard something you think might be relevant to this investigation, please phone the police non-emergency number 101. Or, to report information anonymously, please phone Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or visit crimestoppers-uk.org.
The Developers have informed us that they will be carrying out initial drilling work and some clearance of vegetation on all 3 sites from Monday 22nd January. The main reason for the work is to confirm the position of historical mine shafts so that the final housing layout can be agreed before building work starts later this year.
In order to gain access to Phase 5 the excavators will be using the Wrekin Way Path at the top of Newdale Pool. Access for pedestrians on Wrekin Way will be maintained but when the heavy machinery is being moved pedestrians will have be escorted to ensure their safety.
The maps below indicate the areas affected.
The work is scheduled to last for 4 weeks but the timescale may vary dependant on the drilling results.
The map below outlines the traffic management arrangements for a temporary road closure along Arleston Lane, Arleston.
Amey on behalf of Severn Trent Water are planning to undertake new water connection works. The work is set to commence on Monday 22nd January 2018 and will last for a duration of 3 days with an end date of Wednesday 24th January 2018.
The diversion routes for vehicular traffic will be signed on site.
The following applications have been received:
TWC/2017/0805 5 Acer Close, The Rock, Erection of a single storey side and rear extension (Retrospective)
TWC/2017/0827 3 Clips Moor, Lawley Village, Replace timber windows and french doors with UPVC windows and french doors
TWC/2017/0828 58 Village Drive, Lawley, Erection of single storey side and rear extension
TWC/2017/0882 Recycling House, Rock Road, Ketley, Variation of Conditions, 1 (revised site plan), Condition 9 (1 modern wheel wash), Condition 11 (operating hours), Condition 16 (clarification of type of waste) and Condition 17 (Importation limit) and Removal of conditions 31 and 32 (Mineshafts and Landscaping) (previously discharged) of planning permission W2005/0906
TWC/2017/0887 Site of Reynolds House, Ironmasters Way, Telford Town Centre, Erection of three storey office development with associated landscaping, parking and infrastructure
Further details can be found by entering the full reference number into the link to Telford & Wrekin Council’s Planning website on our main Planning page.
Work was completed in the following areas:
- wired 17 steps at Acer Close to make them safe during the winter months
- blew the steps clear of leaves at Acer Close
- removed a small fly tip at Acer Close
- pruned the shrub bed at Dawley Bank by the shop
- removed a fly tip from Arleston Lane
- repaired the damage caused to the grass verge at Caledonian Way by a car accident
- Blew leaves from the footpath at the Trundle
- Removed leaves from the bus stop on Glendale
- Replaced 2 wind damaged lamppost poppies in Lawley
- Repaired the vehicle damaged grass verge off Old Park Way
- Cleaned a number of road signs around the Parish including Princes End, Colliers Way, Gresham Drive and Arleston Lane
- Removed 3 traffic cones thrown into the hedge off Hunters Rise
- Reported a large fly tip in woodland off Arleston Lane to TWC for removal
- Cleared leaves from the bottom of the Wrekin Trundle footpath to the New Works junction
- Pruned the hedge at the bottom of the Wrekin Trundle to improve the sight line for cars leaving the car park
- Removed a broken fence panel from the hedge at the bottom of the Wrekin Trundle footpath
- Cleared leaves from the footpath along the front of St Johns church on Dawley Road
- Cut back and edged the wildflower bed on the grass area near the Bulls Head pub in Dawley Bank
- Pruned back wild roses at the top of St Heliers
- Blew the path clear of leaves through the woods from Park Road to Cemetery Road
- Removed moss from the footpath at Old Park open space to the pond
- Cut back the shrub bed at Old Park open space and reformed the edges of the bed
- Removed a large number of plastic bottles and cans from the pond at Lawley Village Green
- removed a broken branch from West Centre Way footpath by the footbridge
- Replaced a dog fouling sticker near Newdale Pool
- Blew leaves from the footpath from Bartholomew Road to Lawley Village Green
- Blew leaves from West Centre Way bridge to St Helier
- Blew leaves from the footpath at Arleston Inn to the M54 bridge
- Blew leaves from Acer Close steps
- Removed glass from the parking bays at Cedar Close