POLICE are urging bike owners to safeguard their cycles following a spate of thefts.

Over the past year Ryedale has seen an increase in the number of bikes being stolen with 14 reported incidents this year - 11 of which were in Malton and Norton.

Sergeant Andy Marsden, of Malton Police, said the amount of cycles being taken may be relatively small, but in the majority of cases was easily preventable.

“People need to remember to secure their bikes, both at home and when they are out and about with them,” he said. “Last year we saw a three per cent increase in cycle thefts across Ryedale and while this is small in most cased the thefts could have been prevented if they had been securely locked.”

Sgt Marsden said many of the bikes stolen were recovered by police, but they were unable to return them to their owners as there was no identification on them.

“The majority of cycles are found but we need ID to return them to their owners,” he said.

“This is easy to do as we hold a number of postcode security events across Ryedale on a regular basis.”

Sgt Marsden said the advice from police was to:

l Lock and secure your cycle at all times;

l Make sure it is secure and out of sight when stored at home;

l Make a note of any identifiable marks;

l Get the your postcode printed on the cycle and have it registered.

PCSO Geoff Wynn, who regularly hosts cycle postcode security events, said: “I always advise people to register their bikes online at bikeregister.com as it is a national scheme and has many positive results in returning stolen bikes to their owners. I would also look at immobilise.com, both for bikes and any high value items.

“For people with high value bikes it is also advisable to use smartwater on their bikes.”

PCSO Wynn is holding postcode security events at Malton Library on Saturday, June 3, July 29, September 2, October 7 and December 2, from 10am to 11am.

For more information about bike security, go to northyorkshire.police.uk