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Residents living in rural areas are being urged to be vigilant following several reports of burglaries in villages around Chippenham.

During one of the most recent incidents which happened at approximately 6.40pm on January 5, a woman in her 60s was at police carher home in Yatton Keynell when the patio doors at the address were smashed.

Fortunately, no entry was gained to the house, but three people were seen running from the property.

In two similar incidents on January 6, two homes in Dark Lane, Castle Combe, were broken into in similar circumstances with doors smashed.

Det Con Kev Golledge for the Neighbourhood Team said: “We have had several reports recently regarding houses in rural areas being broken into. Fortunately, nothing is believed to have been stolen in these three incidents, however the home owners have been left upset and frustrated by what has happened.

“I’d urge residents to be mindful of these reports and to remain vigilant. It is often the case that those committing these offences are opportunistic thieves and they will see anything as an invitation to break in to an address, including a house in darkness which appears to be empty, an open window, or valuable items inside.

“We are carrying out extensive enquiries in relation to these incidents and would urge anyone who may have seen or heard any suspicious activity in these areas, including suspicious vehicles which may have been used by the offenders, to get in touch.

“Officers will be increasing patrols in villages in the Chippenham areas but please, if you see or hear anything suspicious, call police on 101 or 999 if you believe is in progress.”

Anyone with information should call 101 and quote crime reference number 54220001362. Alternatively, call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.