VILLAGERS living near a beauty spot are joining forces to fight crime.

Residents in Pickmere have formed a Neighbourhood Watch scheme.

The new group comes just months after villagers formed a residents association to bring the community closer together.

Families, couples and people living on their own have welcomed the idea as they say it makes them feel more safe and secure.

Crime prevention tips and information about about offences that have happened locally and useful resources are shared.

Residents are encouraged to report any suspicious activity on a WhatsApp group as part of the new project. Anyone in the village can join.

Sharing details alerts people to watch out for criminals who have committed crimes in neighbouring areas.

Thieves who recently stole items in Knutsford were spotted driving through the village and immediately reported to the police.

Pickmere mum-of-two Jen Hughes, who runs the Neighbourhood Watch scheme, said: "Knowledge is power when it comes to crime.

"Getting information out quickly makes everyone more vigilant. It allows us to prevent crime and and track potential criminals."

Jen Hughes, who runs Pickmere Neighbourhood Watch scheme

Jen Hughes, who runs Pickmere Neighbourhood Watch scheme

The group doesn't just share information, it also promotes campaigns to highlight issues which can affect people's lives.

The first campaign on domestic abuse has been welcomed for offering a lifeline for victims.

"This is a hidden crime and not often reported to the police," said Jen. "We provided a lot of information to signpost people about where to go for help. If anyone is suffering at home and unable to use a computer to google telephone numbers and support groups, they can use our Facebook page to seek hep.

"We received a lot of positive messages from people saying how good it is to see this topic covered as it is not something people want to talk about."

Home security, theft and burglary prevention will be tackled in the next campaign in June.

Tips on how to combat cyber crime, keep vehicles and credit cards safe and watch out for scams have also been covered by the group.

"We are trying to get as many residents as possible involved," said Jen, who works with a team to develop new cancer drugs. "We want to help the community to feel safer."

Villagers wishing to join can visit Pickmere Residents Association & Neighbourhood Watch on Facebook.