Kate Middleton's husband Prince William is away on a 6-week tour of the Falklands

Furious Bucklebury residents believe the rise to fame of former neighbour Kate Middleton, 30, has drawn unwanted attention to the tiny Berkshire parish - which has a population of around 2,000.

Kate married Prince William, 29, last April and the whole world wanted to know everything about the Queen's new granddaughter-in-law.

'Police have told me Bucklebury is now the No 1 crime spot in West Berkshire,' says Neighbourhood Watch co-ordinator Brian Ward, 70.

'The Royal Wedding has made a lot of people aware of Bucklebury and thieves might be saying: "Why don't we go and rob people there?'

Vandals have smashed car windows, arsonists caused an explosion in a caravan and 3 burglaries have taken place in the village over the past month.

In all, 12 crimes have been reported since the beginning of the year - twice as many as the last 2 years put together.

'The disparate amount of crime in the Bucklebury area in the past six weeks has been identified,' Inspector PJ Binns tells the Mail On Sunday.

'Plans put in place to prevent further crime, catch the offenders and reassure local residents.'

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Anna Duff