The NFU survey paints a bleak picture of crime in the countryside – but one which is also sadly familiar to many farmers.
Almost two thirds of respondents (64%) said rural crime had increased in the past year, while 51% said they felt “not very” or “not at all” secure from crime. More than half (54%) said insufficient police resources were allocated to tackling it.
As well as their experiences of crime, the survey included questions about crime prevention measures introduced on farms over the past five years – and how farmers are working with police.
The survey results show that farmers are responding to the problem by taking steps such as blocking field entrances (78%), digging ditches around fields (45%), upgrading building security (66%) and installing CCTV (49%) on their farms.
More than one third (35%) of respondents said they had regular contact with the police outside of reporting crime. These included face-to-face meetings and attendance at NFU-organised events.