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Posts published in “Neighbourhood Watch”

All security and neighbourhood watch news

Vandalised Beryl Bike in Ferndown

You may be wondering what a Beryl bike is. You won’t be alone because the Beryl Bike initiative is still in its infancy.

Berl Bikes at Southbourne
Two Beryl bikes ready to be hired at Southbourne cliff lift

Basically the Beryl Bike initiative is an attempt to provide those in and around Bournemouth and Poole with a cheap, quick and easy way to hire a road bike. The idea is that by encouraging people to cycle (even if they do not have a bike themselves) will have great benefits for the local communities in this part of Dorset. The concept is that a vibrant Beryl Bike scheme would lead to less pollution, less cars and less congestion on our roads, as well as giving the public an option for a quick and cheap way to get about.

Maybe the Beryl bike scheme will work, maybe not. But whatever the final outcome the scheme deserves the opportunity to prove it’s credentials to the public in the same way any other socially focused business enterprise would.

Especially, a scheme like this (or any business or person) deserves to have its property respected. I don’t think anyone reading this blog would disagree with that.

Beryl Bike vandalised and abandoned near Longham
This Beryl Bike was dumped in Longham and it’s seat stolen

Unfortunately though, this is not the case. Many Beryl bikes have been stolen, vandalised and otherwise treated with contempt. Recently a vandalised Beryl bike was found in Green Lane in Longham, so it looks like at least one of these anti-social vandals lives in our community.

Like all crime, this contemptible behaviour is the work of a very few in society. But these few vandals extract a huge toll on both the community and on initiatives like the Beryl Bike scheme. The result is fewer and fewer people and companies put themselves forward with innovative and socially responsible ideas. The end result is that we all suffer.

Evidently the Beryl Bike scheme in Hereford has virtually no vandalism issues. While in Bournemouth and Poole the issue is huge.

If we allow the vandals to destroy initiatives like the Beryl bike scheme then that will be the thin end of the wedge. We all suffer due to the selfishness of a few.

Beryl bike vandalised at Longham
The smashed electronic brake and the vacuously stolen saddle (worth nothing to the perpetrator) are examples of what this company has to put up with in Dorset.

If you see an abandoned Beryl bike please dial 111 and tell the police where it is. Alternatively contact Beryl by: calling Beryl on 020 3003 5044 (7am-9pm Monday to Sunday), or by email at

Make plain your displeasure about this mindless vandalism to those that you know. If we all speak up then those responsible may just get the message that anti-social behaviour is unacceptable in Ferndown.

More on the immense problems being faced by Beryl due to theft and vandalism can be found on this report in the Dorset Echo from last October. Also see this on another Beryl Bike vandalised in Wimborne. from this weeks Dorset Echo.

BH Post Code Burglary Rates

You will be pleased to know that the Ferndown area is towards the bottom of the range when it comes to burglary, both nationally and within the Bournemouth or BH post code area. But still, there are safer places. It is perhaps something we should be more concerned about.

A burglary is more than just an anti-social crime it can and often does ruin or blight the lives of those affected. Leaving victims feeling vulnerable and violated.

Out of the 2,402 UK postcode areas, ours ranks as the 1,459th most likely to put in a home insurance claim for burglary. This means that around 60% of UK post code areas have a higher incidence of burglary than we have in Ferndown. Statistically, there is just under a 1% chance of a Ferndown household being burgled in a year.

Here is the league table burglaries in BH post code area.  Malmesbury Park, Charminster, Queens Park, Strouden Park and Townsend share the dubious honour of being the most burgled areas in the Bournemouth and East Dorset.

BH Post Codes Burglary League Table

** Indicates a Ferndown post code. The most prevalent Ferndown post code is BH22

UK Burglary Rank out of 2402Post CodePostal AreaCrimes per 1000 homes
187BH8Malmesbury Park, Charminster, Queens Park, Strouden Park, Townsend30.23
231BH14Lower Parkstone, Lilliput, Penn Hill28.37
238BH7Littledown, Iford28.21
445BH3Talbot Woods, Winton22.14
511BH6Southbourne, Tuckton, Wick20.88
602BH4Westbourne, Branksome Woods19.52
646BH5Boscombe, Pokesdown18.87
708BH9Winton, Moordown, Throop, Muscliff18.02
874BH1Bournemouth town centre, Springbourne, East Cliff, Boscombe15.55
892BH12Branksome, Alderney, Upper Parkstone, Newtown15.31
964BH15Poole town centre, Hamworthy, Oakdale14.56
1,166BH21Wimborne, Ferndown12.30 **
1,173BH11Kinson, Bear Cross, West Howe, Wallisdown12.25
1,229BH10Kinson, Northbourne, Redhill, Ensbury Park, Wallisdown, Ferndown11.65 **
1,429BH2Bournemouth Central, West Cliff9.65
1,459BH22Ferndown, West Moors9.40 **
1,540BH13Canford Cliffs, Sandbanks, Branksome Park8.70
2,034BH17Canford Heath, Creekmoor4.61

BH Post Code Burglary Incidence

The spread of criminality over the BH area is vast. A person in Verwood is nearly 12 times LESS likely to be burgled than someone living in Charminster. While someone living on the West Parley/Ferndown boundary is merely 3 times less likely to be burgled than someone in Charminster.

I suppose we should take comfort in the fact that the worst place for burglary in the country is Digbeth in Birmingham which makes even Charminster look safe with double the Charminster burglary rate.

However complacency is a poor master. The cruel truth is that every burglary in your area affects not only the victim but the insurance rates for everyone else in the area too. We should at least target getting our burglary rate down to that of our neighbours in Verwood.

It is important that we as a community push hard against the tyranny of criminality. We in the SFRA recommend that everyone should actively participate in their local Neighbourhood Watch scheme and also hold the local council and police to account for controlling anti-social behavior and the associated criminality.

Sitting back and just hoping that we won’t be next should not be an option in our community.

If you are not in a BH post code area but would like to know the crime rate in your area try this handy tool on Money Supermarket