This week has continued to be fairly quiet post the new year break, writes inspector Steve Marsh of Dorchester police.

It is pleasing that the majority of crime types in Dorchester and the surrounding area remain low.

The two exceptions to this are, as previously mentioned, thefts from outbuildings and garages and shoplifting.

Both offences are currently on the increase and above the number of offences compared with the same time last year.

We continue to work hard with local business premises to ensure that information sharing and co-operation leads towards prevention and detection of store thieves.

Many are career criminals who travel to the town and are very good at stealing without being seen.

The good news is that the number being arrested and charged remains high and we will continue to target known suspects. You may have seen the article last week describing the new shed at Poundbury Garden Centre.

I urge you to have a look at it and pick up some tips about making your own shed safer.

We have included a wide range of crime prevention products and advice which will deter thieves.

Much of what is being taken is sold on quickly and we rely on members of the public to inform us if offered goods they believe are stolen.

At the moment power tools in particular are being stolen and then sold on.

If you see or are offered goods you can tell us directly or if you prefer, use Crime Stoppers on 0800 555 111.

Finally, a reminder regarding driving sensibly in icy conditions and rain.

Last week we had one day of overnight frost and ice on the road which then led to a number of road traffic accidents.

Whilst it has been very wet so far we have not seen many cold days leading to ice, etc.

Please drive according to the conditions – slow down, make sure you have good visibility out of your windscreen before you set off and that your lights and tyres are all road legal.