IN 1976, police in Oxfordshire found a simpler way to try to deter thieves: plaster it all over the car.

Sergeant Mike Lawrence is pictured here in June that year with the force's new vehicle covered in anti-theft messages in Oxford.

The car was also equipped with special locks, including locking wheel nuts and an anti-theft siren.

Officers took their cars on tour over the county that month, visiting Wantage, Bicester, Thame, Banbury and Witney.

The Oxford Mail reported at the time that 'the last time Thames Valley Police attempted such an intensive campaign car thefts in the area were cut by 10 per cent'.