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Neighbourhood Watch News - April 2017

Summer Time is here


The clocks went FORWARD by 1 hour on March 26th, marking the start of British Summer Time (BST).  Many modern clocks and timers are ‘wireless’, obtaining their time signals from one of the various standard radio clocks, and such devices will automatically accommodate the change to BST.  However, the more traditional mechanical and digital timers will need to be reset manually, and also have their ON/OFF periods adjusted to take account of the lengthening days. Have you adjusted yours?


Table Top Event, Christ Church


A successful table top display of safety and crime prevention information was held on Friday, February 24th at Christ Church.  There was a steady flow of enquirers and a lot of interest shown in the information and products available.  The next event will be on Tuesday, May 9th between 10am and Noon.  Make a note in your diary!


Current crime


The trend away from ‘traditional’ acquisitive crime towards the more sophisticated fraud-related crime seems to be continuing, whether this is by deception mail through the post or network-related crime. 


In March, a resident received a very authentic-looking letter in the post claiming to be from the ‘People’s Postcode Lottery’.  The letter carried several elements that were ‘genuine’ – such as the address of a well-known betting company and an internationally recognised ‘quality’ logo - which all added to the apparently genuine nature of the missive.  The letter claimed that the recipient’s name had been chosen at random from the UK Electoral Roll, and that he had ‘won’ a significant sum of money, no doubt subject to payment of a ‘claim registration fee’!  Fortunately, our resident recognised the letter as being fraudulent and was not taken in by the lure of a fortune.  Remember the old Shakespearian line – ‘All that glisters is not gold’.


Another frequent scam has been the telephone call from BT or Microsoft or some other well-known network provider, claiming that ‘there is a problem with your router’ or some other such techie jargon, and that ‘you will be losing your internet connection very shortly unless……..’  The proffered solution is for you to give the caller access to your computer (assuming you have one in the first place) and they will ‘fix’ the problem for you.  Well, should you fall for their story and give them online access to your PC, they will certainly ‘fix you’, as one resident found to his cost when an encrypted password was installed on the PC locking him out.  If you receive such a call, the safest solution is to simply hang-up.  If you have plenty of time, put the phone down leaving the call connected and go off and to some gardening, or engage the caller in some pointless and time-wasting conversation!  Whatever you choose to do, NEVER let them near your computer.


Finally, there are reports of residents in the area receiving phone calls – described as ‘pre-recorded prank calls’ – targeting the young and elderly.  The caller has frequently been described as ‘an angry Scottish man claiming that you are stealing his WiFi connection’!  If the caller’s number can be identified, you can ask your phone provider to ‘block’ the number.


For further information on these topics or about Neighbourhood Watch, contact:

David GresswellArea Co-ordinator, Flackwell Heath

(Tel: 525019   e-mail:


Police General & Non-emergency number: 101

Public Safety Team (Anti-social behaviour): 01494 421087

Crimestoppers (Anonymous): 0800 555 111

Trading Standards (Consumer Direct): 0845 4 04 05 06

ACTION FRAUD: 0300 123 2040 (

NHS : 111



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