Jingle Bells

Press Release: 19/12/2008

As part of a crime prevention initiative, Winchester City Council Neighbourhood Wardens have been giving away little gold bells to attach to purses an

As part of a crime prevention initiative, Winchester City Council Neighbourhood Wardens are taking a pro-active approach to help prevent the occurrence of purse and handbag theft by giving away little gold bells, festively named ‘Jingle Bells’, for people to attach to their purses and handbags.

Neighbourhood Warden, Hannah Beech said:  “These bells are a great way of raising awareness of personal safety over the busy Christmas period. We want to encourage people to become more mindful of their purses, wallets and handbags as towns and shopping areas become increasingly busy with Christmas shoppers, therefore making it easier for thieves to target handbags and back pockets."

"The bells acted as a good icebreaker when approaching shoppers in Winchester to offer advice. We were amazed at just how many people were happily wandering around with their bags open and their money unprotected , so this gave us the ideal opportunity to remind shoppers to zip their bags up."

The Wardens launched the project in the City Centre on Tuesday 16th December and gave away hundreds of little gold bells which went down extremely well with all the Christmas shoppers. BBC South Today where also there to report on the event and help to promote the initiative.

Malcolm Wilton, Hampshire Constabulary’s Crime Prevention Manager said: “I would like to urge residents to ensure that they only carry essential items in their handbags and purses and to push your purse to the bottom of your bag, making it more difficult for a thief to steal.“

"It only takes seconds for a thief to take your bag so keep your money and valuables secure and close to your body so don’t leave bags and other personal items in shopping trolleys.”

If you would like to find out more you can contact the Neighbourhood Wardens free on 0800 389 6274 or email neighbourhoodwardens@winchester.gov.uk