POLICE in York will bring back a scheme to help ensure homes in the city are protected from criminals this summer.

Operation Joypad will see dozens of officers, PCSOs, Special Constables and volunteers checking doors and windows of homes around York to ensure they are secure.

Last year's operation saw burglaries across the city drop by 25 per cent, and PC Andrew Pearson said he hoped this year's scheme would see similar results.

He said: "Unfortunately, opportunist criminals will be on the look-out for insecure properties, and won’t hesitate to walk in and steal phones, tablets, car keys and any other valuables they can get hold of.

"Our crime data show that burglaries tend to increase in the summer months. That’s why it’s so important to keep doors and windows shut and locked. A few extra seconds spent on simple security measures can save many hours of hassle and heartache dealing with the consequences of a burglary."

Residents will be offered crime prevention advice as part of the scheme, and the opportunity to security mark their property using the force’s dot peen property marking machines.

The force has identified key areas for officers to focus on, using a combination of public sector data, crime statistics, local knowledge and police intelligence.

Last year, less than one in ten homes found to be insecure in the city, while there were 311 burglaries in York between July and September, compared with 193 between October and December.

Patrols are already underway in the Haxby Road and Cornlands Road areas, and will continue throughout the summer, with tens of thousands of homes expected to be checked.

Officers are also promoting North Yorkshire Community Messaging, a free alert and information service which residents can use to stay informed via text, email or app. To find out more, visit nycm.co.uk