Leighton Buzzard seems to be suffering from a lot of bike crime, especially at the station and High Street. We know the Police and Council are aware of the situation and are dealing with it but bike theft is a frustrating and upsetting experience. To help yourself, the first thing to do is register your bike with Bike Register at www.bikeregister.com, the national cycle database, as this will increase the chances of the police being able to trace your stolen bike back to you if it is recovered – it’s free so a no-brainer. Also, take photos of your bike, put a small recognisable mark somewhere discreet with a permanent marker or a spot of paint. Take a photo of this mark and the frame number, while you’re at it take a photo of your receipt too.
The steps you take after the theft could greatly improve your chances of recovering your bike – especially if you act quickly…
- Report the theft to the police
The first step is to report the fact that your bike has been stolen to the police by calling 101. Ideally, you need to know the make, model and frame number. You should also tell police if the bike has been marked and registered to BikeRegister.
- Report the theft to BikeRegister
BikeRegister is the UK’s largest cycle database and is used by every police force in the country. If your bike is registered with BikeRegister, they can help you get the word out about your stolen bike to their community members via social media. You can report your bike as stolen at: www.bikeregister.com
- Report the theft to your insurer
A dedicated cycle policy usually offers a better deal than general household insurance, which may only cover bikes up to a certain value. If you’ve got bike insurance, you’ll need to report the theft to your insurer within 24 hours of discovery. The crime reference number the police will give you, combined with a receipt for your bike will help you make a claim.
- Alert Dorvics
Let us know the details of the stolen bike in case the thief comes into the shop and tries to offer the bike for sale as we do get a lot of “I’ve just been given a bike by my brother, what do you think it’s worth”?.If anyone tries to sell it to us we can also get pictures from our CCTV for the Police.
- Post on Social Media or put up flyers
Worth a shot! A few well-placed flyers in your local neighbourhood could help find your bike. Depending on how important your bike is to you, you may consider offering a reward. There is also a local Leighton Buzzard Facebook Page specifically for bike theft which can be seen here https://www.facebook.com/groups/2230292060525463/
- What to do if you spot your stolen bike for sale
There are countless stories about people who spot their stolen bike for sale on online auction sites. However, meeting up with the seller can be dangerous and is not advisable. If you find yourself in this situation, contact the seller of the bike via text message and arrange a meeting. Then, contact the police and tell them where you’ll be meeting the thief. The police can’t pose as buyers, but they can act on information about a thief and have been known to intervene in these circumstances.
Dorvics will not buy second hand bikes. A majority of people walking into the shop asking for us to buy their bike we’re sure are genuine, but providing thieves with an avenue to sell stolen bikes will only fuel the problem. To also help, if you have had a bike stolen and need to replace it, providing you have a valid Police Crime Refence Number as proof, we’ll give you 15% discount off the list price of a replacement bike and any accessories bought together.