Date posted: May 25, 2021Dear Neighbours,
We have had a series of burglaries and attempted robberies in areas adjacent to the NRA over the last two months, mainly involving unoccupied homes and outbuildings, suggestive of intruders who seem to be entering the area at night on the lookout for opportunity.
These include a break-in to an unoccupied home in Avondrust Mews on 14 April, when a gas cylinder was stolen, attempts at a number of nearby houses in Katzenellenbogen and Leerdam Roads on 20 April, when a bicycle (that was later retrieved) was stolen and more recently, on or around 20 May, the (empty) garage of an unoccupied home in Avondrust Lane was broken into.
So please try to be very aware of those smaller security details such as locks on outbuildings and objects in gardens that could easily disappear! Our experience is that the bigger crimes tend to follow the small stuff.
On the note of more serious crime, we have unfortunately been receiving worrying reports of home invasions on properties close to the mountainside in areas of Kommetjie and Fish Hoek. This seems to be the work of a highly organised gang, with multiple members.
What is different from previous incidents of this sort is that the gang tends to operate at around 8:30pm, when many residences are still open and alarms are off.
So, with the cold and dark weather, in any case making this easier, it may be wise to lock up earlier than usual and to turn radios on early in the evening. We will be doing some radio checks before 8 soon, just to be sure we are well connected and prepared!
Several residents have been raising concerns about the wellbeing of a neighbour in one of the beachfront houses who seemed to be struggling with essential needs such as transport, lights and water and was noted to be behaving erratically.
This led to some discussion at Committee Level. We agreed that we have always seen our mandate as being about both the Safety and Security of our members and that we can best achieve this through building community.
We thus made our own enquiries, arranged an informal network to monitor the situation, engaged with the resident directly and employed a Social Worker to assist when this became necessary, after establishing that she did not have any close family available to help.
Fortunately, after the resident was reported missing, we were able to locate her in Hospital, where she is receiving care and we are now assisting with further steps to secure her property and care arrangements in the future. We are particularly grateful to Karen MacIntyre and Lynne Hogan, various caring neighbours and To Felicity Purchase our Ward Councillor, for all the hard work and support!
Finally, on the subject of community, those of us who were at the recent NRPA AGM cannot but have been impressed by the huge amount of work that is constantly being done by members of our community to look after and even improve the area we live in.
Speaking personally, I can remember my daughter, as an eight-year-old, becoming utterly distraught about the amount of rubbish on the beach, and how we vainly tried to pick it all up but usually gave in, overwhelmed. Now that same beach is mostly spotless, and we seem to take it for granted!
This is but one example of the many initiatives, spearheaded by members of our community that fall under the NRPA, and include such things as looking after our beach and Common, preserving open spaces, making our roads safer and making sure developments retain our area’s unique appeal.
Of course, not everyone agrees with all the NRPA Committee’s decisions but that is the nature of democracy and even more reason to participate and make your voice heard! It was thus disappointing to hear how low the membership numbers are for this important body, so we would really like to encourage everyone who is not a member to join now.
We have therefore attached a Letter from the NRPA that explains its mission and we would strongly encourage everyone to join – a strong community is a safe community!
Wishing you a warm and safe month!
The CPNW Committee