Rural residents warned by police after Byworth thefts

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SUSSEX police have reported more garden equipment stolen, this time from Byworth, near Petworth.

Between August 10 and 16, a shed was broken into in the grounds of the property.

The padlock was broken off the door of the shed and a Hayter lawn mower and Stihl strimmer were stolen.

Police are appealing to all home owners in the rural area to be aware of the rising tide of rural crime and ensure all their property is secured.

Police in the Midhurst and Petworth area have stepped up patrols in a bid to combat the recent spate of thefts from farms and garden sheds.

A special property marking service for tack and garden machinery is being offered by police.

For more information on tack marking, contact heidi.hay@sussex.pnn.police.uk and for garden machinery craig.dunlop@sussex.pnn.police.uk

Anyone with information about the theft from the shed at Byworth should contact police on 0845 60 70 999.

Last week the Observer revealed that rural theft was estimated to have cost agriculture across the south east £4.9m last year, according to NFU Mutual, the insurance arm of the National Farmers Union.