Portsmouth is one of the worst cities in the country for bike thefts according to data collected by the police in 2015-16 and there’s no sign that that has changed.

In the second half of 2017 more than 446 bikes were stolen from the PO1 area, covering Portsmouth city centre while another 30 were stolen from the PO6 area around Cosham, according to theft reporting website stolen-bikes.co.uk.

However, there are a number of things we can do about this.

Here are our top tips to make sure your bikes stay where you left them.


Cyclist taking bike out of bike shed

1. Where to park?

Always lock your bicycle up – especially in a bike shed (where provided). It only takes seconds to steal an unsecured bike. Make sure it's locked in a well-lit public area where there are lots of people passing. Railway stations and public buildings often have designated areas with bicycle racks. Remember to read signs in the area you intend to park being sure not to park illegally.



Thief looking to steal a bicycle

2. Use a good-quality lock

Only use good quality D-locks. A poor quality lock at the lower end of the market can be easily cut through. It certainly pays to invest in the best quality lock you can afford. Always lock your bicycle to something immovable, an object a bicycle cannot be lifted over and cannot be broken, cut or removed, for example chain link fencing, grilles, gates or trees. Check the object is fastened to the ground. For maximum protection use two locks of different types (a D-lock and robust chain and padlock is ideal) Make sure you lock up both the bike's frame and wheels.



Bicycle locked up at home

3. Secure it at home

As many as half of all bicycles are stolen from their owner's home. Always lock your bike at home even when it is in your garage, flat or halls of residence. Make sure you keep your bicycle out of view of prying eyes if possible too.



Cyclist using his mobile phone

4. Get insurance

If you own a decent bike, then it's probably a good idea to insure it. There are several ways you can do this including through your home contents insurance (don't forget to cover it for thefts away from home). More expensive bicycles may require specific insurance cover against theft and accidental damage. A range of companies offer urban cycling insurance including London Cycling Campaign.



Police marking a bicycle - photo courtesy of Bike Register

Photo courtesy of Bike Register

5. Tag and register your bike

Getting your bike permanently tagged and registered is an essential way to both protect it from theft and increase the chances if it being found if it is stolen. You could mark your own bike yourself, using a kit from Bike Register

Article Details

  • Date 10/01/2018