Residents ‘on edge’ after reports of suspicious activity in Norfolk market town

Swaffham Market Cross and Market Place. Picture: Denise Bradley

Swaffham Market Cross and Market Place. Picture: Denise Bradley - Credit: ©Archant Photographic 2011

Residents in Swaffham have been left feeling 'on edge' following reports of suspicious activity and people attempting to break into cars.

Police urged residents to be vigilant and lock their cars, after vehicles were tampered with over the weekend and a person was seen walking up driveways.

Emily Francis, who lives at Swans Nest on Brandon Road, said that she first encountered the troubles on Wednesday, March 14, when she forgot to lock her car.

That night an unknown number of suspects gained entry to her vehicle and searched it, in what is believed to an attempted theft.

'I was one of the lucky ones as nothing was taken,' she said. 'Someone had looked through the internal compartments and left the driver-side door open.'

She said that her neighbour was not so lucky, as someone also accessed their car and stole a purse.

'Swans Nest is a lovely, quiet estate so you just don't expect things like that to happen here. Seeing the increase of thefts and burglaries in Swaffham has put everyone on edge,' she added.

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On Highfield Avenue, resident Jelena Ulase, said that the snowfall over the weekend became a clear sign that vehicles at a nearby car park had been tampered with.

'On Sunday morning I looked around our car park and there were lots of foot prints around each car, especially on the driver's side. I don't know how many cars are parked on our estate for certain, but around 25 or 30.'

She added that it was unusual to see this kind of activity and it has left people on the estate feeling insecure.

Norfolk County Councillor, Ed Coleman, said he has spoken with Norfolk's Police and Crime Commissioner Lorne Green and he wanted to reassure residents that Norfolk Constabulary are looking into what happened.

'I would urge people not to leave their vehicles unsecured at any point, in any town, and if anyone has any information please pass it on to Norfolk Constabulary. It is important we work with them to support their investigation,' he said.

'Norfolk Police have asked people to remain vigilant but I have not heard anything that makes me feel people should be alarmed, and I wouldn't want people to feel insecure in their own homes over this.

'It is important that we continue to work together to reassure the local community and inform them of the positive work going on to prevent crime in the town.'

Anyone who may have seen or heard anything suspicious in the areas or anyone with information should contact PC Ryan Thorogood at Dereham Police Station on 101.

Alternatively, contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or online.

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