Police are attempting to crack down on bicycle thefts with a cycle marking initiative which registers people’s bikes to a national database.
Sussex Police held four days of cycle marking events across the county, with 211 bicycles marked in Worthing and Littlehampton combined, and a total of 503 overall.
Officers were on hand to record the details of the owners and their bicycles and equip them with anti-tamper labels.
The details are uploaded to the Bike Register website and if a bicycle is stolen, its owner can log it on the system.
If an officer stops a cyclist whose bicycle has one of the labels on it, they can check in a matter of minutes whether the bike has been stolen.
Speaking at the first event in Worthing on Thursday, PC Tim Jose, of Sussex Police, said: “Cycle thefts are a large problem at the moment. There are roughly 40 bikes a month stolen from Worthing town centre.
“The event’s been going very well and in the last hour and a half we’ve marked around 20 bikes.
“The system is not infallible, but it shows thieves that we are taking action and we will be actively stopping people to check from now on.”
Nathan Levett, 36, from Worthing, who had his bicycle marked, praised the scheme.
He said: “It’s a great idea. There seems to be a problem with thefts at the moment so it’s good that they are making people aware that it is happening.
There is another event planned for Saturday, January 19, at the Chapel Road/Warwick Street junction in Worthing at 10am.
Bike Register is a national company and cyclists can also arrange their own security through them.
For more information, visit www.bikeregister.com