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Police issue Latitude crime warning

PUBLISHED: 15:21 07 July 2010 | UPDATED: 21:51 01 August 2010

PEOPLE attending the Latitude Festival are being urged to safeguard their property and leave their valuables at home.

This year's festival takes place over four days, starting next Thursday, in the scenic setting of Henham estate, near Southwold.

PEOPLE attending the Latitude Festival are being urged by police to safeguard their property and leave their valuables at home.

This year's festival takes place over four days, starting next Thursday, in the scenic setting of Henham estate, near Southwold.

Although the organisers strive to make it a relaxed, family-orientated event, they are warning that the UK festival scene attracts a 'criminal element that will seek to prey upon people who have let their guard down'.

The main crime problem tends to be thefts from tents in the campsites. At Latitude 2008, there were a number of such offences, most of which occurred during the early hours of the first night while people were settling in.

Thieves entered tents while people were asleep, either by unzipping the opening or, in some cases, by slashing the canvas.

At Latitude 2009, there was a significant fall in crime as a result of improved security and liaison with the police.

But organisers say people can take some basic precautions to ensure they do not fall victim to thieves.

They include leaving valuables at home; not leaving easy-to-steal items in tents; placing any property such as cameras, mobile phones or credit cards inside a bag and tucking it into a sleeping bag when going to sleep; only bringing bank cards along that are needed; and those who arrive in cars not leaving desirable items on display.

Festival-goers are also being urged to remain vigilant and keep items secure in pockets and bags to guard against pickpockets, particularly in crowded areas, and to use the lockers provided in the camping village.

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