Basildon residents are being urged to be on high alert following a series of burglaries.

In the first two weeks of April, Essex Police has received 47 reports of break-ins in sheds, garages and commercial buildings across the borough.

Thieves forced the door of a secure garage in Hermitage Drive, Laindon last Saturday (April 14) between 11pm and 9am the next day, making off with two mountain bikes worth around £120.

A football changing room in Swan Mead was broken in to, in which a suspect cut and stole £500 of copper piping, leaving £1,000 of damage to the water system.

The incident took place between 12am on April 13 and 10:30am on April 15.

Chief Inspector Glen Pavelin, Basildon district commander, said: "We are asking the public to be vigilant against any suspicious activity around sheds, garages, and commercial buildings. If you see anyone suspicious, please report it to police immediately.

"We are also advising residents to ensure they invest in good security for their outbuildings; where possible install a shed alarm and invest in heavy duty locks that are harder to force.

“As we are coming up to summer, thieves will know that high value garden tools will be kept in sheds and garages, so make sure your property is properly protected.”

For more crime reduction advice contact Basildon crime reduction officer Lorna Watson on 101.

To report a crime, call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.