Any home is a potential target for burglars; some are more appealing than others and some offer themselves up with a bow that begs to be opened.
NEWLY-installed stonework has been stolen from almost every house on a street.
The thefts happened amid reports of gangs touring back streets in trucks and vans, on the lookout for targets. And it follows a recent incident when paving stones were ripped up and stolen from a park.
Nearly every one of the 17 homes along part of New Market Street, Colne, has had coping stones taken from their refurbished back yard walls, causing thousands of pounds of damage.
Now police are urging residents in Pendle to be their eyes and ears amid reports of the gangs 'driving down back alleys and looking over walls to see what they can find'.
People living in New Market Street, including Neighbourhood Watch volunteers, believe that the thieves are striking in the early hours.
One woman, who has lived there for more than 45 years but asked not to be named, said: "It has been atrocious. It must have been in the middle of the night because no-one has seen anything.
"It has been really disheartening and we thought that it must have been local people. We always report anything which we see."
Another neighbour added: "If I claim on my insurance it's going to cost at least £100 to begin with, and I can't afford to replace them straight away."Insp Phil Davies, Pendle's neighbourhood inspector, said: "I am aware of the problem and we have also had difficulties in the Vivary Bridge and Horsfield areas.
"Some of my officers have intelligence, surrounding these thefts. It is quite a difficult thing for us to deal with, when it comes to tracing the stones, and it can be quite expensive for householders.
"We will also be doing some work around protective marking."
Residents have also been taking action in a bid to thwart the opportunists.
Remaining coping stones have been spray-painted by residents and the would-be thieves have not returned.
Coun Dorothy Lord said: "There seems to be a rise in stone thefts, especially around the Waterside area.
"You see people standing on the back of trucks, looking over back yards to see what they find. If anyone sees this happening then they should take down registration numbers and report them to the police."
Coun Neil Butterworth added: "A lot of people don't want to get involved and confront these people.
"But by simply taking down a registration number, they can help out the police and prevent this from going on."
In February thieves stole six large yorkstone flags from the heritage Steam and Stream trail through Slough Park, Barnoldswick.
And last year a number of properties, particularly in the Keighley Road area of Colne and nearby Laneshawbridge, saw decorative stonework taken by suspected travelling criminals
All comments are fully moderated - offensive and unsuitable material will be deleted.
The Metropolitan Police and the Ministry of Defence can confirm that the man who died in Woolwich yesterday was a serving soldier.
VILLAGERS will set up a neighbourhood watch scheme to stop crime spiralling out of control.
Whether itís a family heirloom or a cherished gift, our possessions are often worth more to us than their actual monetary value. It might be an engagement ring, or a watch which has been passed down through the generations: some things simply cannot be replaced, which makes keeping them safe all the more important.
The Access to Elected Office Fund offers individual grants of between £250 and £20,000 to disabled people who want to be considered for selection as candidates for an election, or are standing for election.