FOUR men were arrested in Buckden under suspicion of quad bike thefts after a vigilant Dales resident became suspicious.

At 10.50pm on Wednesday, January 22, a member of the public reported a group of men trying to steal a quad bike from a property in Hawes. She shouted at the men and they ran off. However, she was able to give police a description of the vehicle they left in.

Those details were circulated to police officers in the area, as well as to Mobile Rural Watch volunteers. And at about 11.35pm the same day, the volunteers spotted a vehicle matching its description in Buckden.

Police attended, and four men were arrested in connection with the attempted theft of the quad bike. The men were aged 19, 20, 25 and 27, and all from the Bradford area.

The quad bike, a red Honda, was due to be forensically examined as part of those enquiries. The suspects’ car was seized for being suspected of use in crime.

Officers investigating the incident are asking anyone who saw anything that might assist their enquiries – in particular if anyone has CCTV in the area

Quad bikes are among the items most likely to be stolen in rural areas of North Yorkshire. In light of this and other recent incidents, police are urging owners to be vigilant.

They also suggest safety measures such as fitting a GPS tracker or perhaps an alarm, wheel clamps and or locking posts when not in use.

PCSO Bryan Tongue, of North Yorkshire Police’s Rural Taskforce, said: “I would urge anyone who owns a quad bike, particularly if they live in a rural or isolated area, to take extra steps to ensure their vehicles are always left safe and secure. It’s far better to spend some time and money now on high-quality security measures, rather than have to go through the inconvenience and upset of having your quad bike stolen.”

Mobile Rural Watch volunteers operate across the North Yorkshire countryside, supporting the force’s Neighbourhood Policing Teams and Rural Taskforce. As this incident shows, they provide a vital role in being ‘eyes and ears’ in the fight against countryside crime.

Residents are also encouraged to note down and report any suspicious activity, such as unusual vehicle movements, particularly in remote or isolated areas. Even if the information doesn’t need an immediate response, every piece of intelligence helps the police build up a picture and could prove vital in bring criminals to justice.

Anyone with information of the incident is asked to contact police 101 and select option 1, quoting reference 12200012563.