POLICE in Ryedale have issued advice following reports of an increase in thefts from livery yards.

A spokesperson said: "Tack can be extremely valuable, and so unfortunately is often targeted by thieves. Here is some essential advice for keeping your premises safe.

Our top tips:

◾️ Keep all tack and equipment in a secure, locked tack-room and keep up with maintenance as rusty or failing hinges and rotten wood are easily spotted.

◾️ Invest in good quality padlocks and chains for your gates and doors. Ideally padlocks with a heavy-duty hasp and staple on barn and outbuilding doors, fitted directly to the door, with two equally spaced locks from top to bottom.

◾️ If possible, fit bars on tack room windows as these are often a key entry point for thieves.

◾️ Get your tack and equipment property marked, we offer regular property marking events at local retailers so keep an eye out for posters and social media posts about these.

◾️ Consider installing CCTV. Although it can be expensive, cheaper alternatives are coming to the market all the time and it can be instrumental in both deterring and catching offenders.

◾️ Ensure your yard is well lit as this is a key deterrent for intruders.

◾️ All horses, donkeys and mules need to be microchipped by law and you should update your Passport Issuing Organisation (PIO) with the microchip number so this can be uploaded to the Central Equine Database. The database allows you to quickly report your horse is missing and check if a horse is legally for sale.

◾️ Be vigilant for anyone strangers visiting the yard and if it is a shared premises, try to make everyone aware of any known visitors.

◾️ Keep a regular check of all fences and field boundaries for any weak spots which would let horses out or allow thieves in.

◾️ Put padlocks on both ends of your gates so that they cannot be lifted off the hinges.

◾️ Ensure all vehicles/trailers are locked and secured.