As students go back to college this month, they are urged to take a few simple steps to protect their bikes.
Bicycles left unlocked outdoors, even in school or college grounds, are prime targets for thieves, says the Safer New Forest Partnership.
Pupils and students should always secure their bikes, even if they are left in a cycle shed or CCTV protected area.
Safer New Forest sells a gold standard D lock for just £16, available from New Forest District Council information offices. Securing bikes with this toughened lock is a visible deterrent to thieves.
Cllr Jill Cleary, NFDC portfolio holder for Housing and Communities, said: “Don’t let opportunist thieves ruin your new term. Padlock your bike every time you leave it unattended.
“The Partnership is pleased to support the sale of these high quality cycle D locks in the council’s information offices. These have been tested and proved very successful.”
The Safer New Forest Partnership also urges bike owners to make a note of their bike’s serial number and security mark their property.
The Partnership supports the Immobilise website www.immobilise.com where you can register your bikes and other property for free. The police then use this information to reunite stolen or lost property with its rightful owner.
If you have information about cycle thieves, call Hampshire Police on 101.
More information about the bike locks can be found on www.safer.newforest.gov.uk