Sunday, March 30
I had an interesting talk with a visiting off duty policeman from a force down South, who was visiting Barrow for the first time. He was impressed with the area and said he would like to visit again some time, and then the talk turned to the subject of crime. He like me thought that Barrow's isolation was an advantage in some ways and that a bridge over the bay would bring the problem of big city crime a step closer. The patch he works is fairly rural, but is within twenty minutes of a nearby city. He told me of some of the problems that this brings including burglaries, drugs, and car crime.
He was surprised when I told him that the latest crime plaguing his area hadn't yet been heard of in this area.
He tells me that gangs of thieves are targeting a thing called a catalytic converter which is part of the silencer on most modern cars. It seems that they go for larger motors, 4x4s and vans because the converter is easier to get at and being bigger contains more of the precious metals which they then sell on for scrap value, which nowadays is at least £50 for each cat. In some instances he says the converters are being cut from owners' vehicles in their own driveways. This leaves the vehicle owner with a steep repair bill and replacement costs of £300 to over £1000 for some vehicles. So there you go folks, keep a good eye on that cat eh!