Toughen up on cold callers, residents urged

Dorset Echo: ADVICE: Ivan Hancock, county council trading standards manager ADVICE: Ivan Hancock, county council trading standards manager

DORSET residents are being urged to help combat doorstep crime and stand up to aggressive cold callers.

It comes after it was revealed a Dorchester man was ripped off by a gang of workers.

Dorset County Council’s Trading Standards team is spelling out advice to deal with conmen and rogue traders as part of National Consumer Week.

Since April, officers have intervened and advised where rogue doorstep traders have been involved on 13 occasions. Of these, seven were in relation to driveway work, with others involving tree cutting, roofing, fencing and insulation.

Action has been taken in four cases including prosecutions for fraud and misleading consumers.

People are advised to use trusted traders available through the county’s Buy With Confidence scheme.

This features a range of reputable businesses which have been vetted and which are committed to good customer service.

Dorset County Council Trading Standards manager Ivan Hancock said: “As a rule, we always advise people never to deal with cold callers.

“You can display a card in your door to deter unwanted callers.

“If someone does knock on your door trying to sell you something, be polite but firm in turning them away. And if they persist, you are within your rights to call the police – if the person on your doorstep does not leave they are committing an offence.”

Oxfordshire Trading Standards recently led a prosecution against Thomas Doran and Jeremy Connors, both trading as Brett Driveways of Basildon, Essex. They admitted misleading consumers by false statements and failure to provide written notices of consumers’ rights to cancel work.

One of their victims was a Dorchester resident who agreed to driveway work for £3,000.

The required notice of the right to cancel the work within seven days was not given. The next day a gang started work and then demanded £5,000, claiming more materials were needed.

After an argument this became £4,000, which the householder paid. He later found that the proper drainage was not put in and some repairs were needed.

Doran and Connors were fined £1,200 each, ordered to pay costs totalling £1,155 and compensation to one consumer of £200.

Dorset officers helped in the case and Mr Hancock said: “We have taken a firm line with enforcement action against rogue traders.

“We would also urge consumers to be more cautious.”

For local businesses you can trust call 08454 04 05 06 or visit buywithconfidence.gov.uk

Comments (5)

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5:19pm Sat 17 Nov 12

alan_h says...

This article doesn't mention that a PDF file of a suitable card to display on the front door can be downloaded from:

http://www.dorsetfor
you.com/media.jsp?me
diaid=157183&filetyp
e=pdf

We've displayed a similar card for many years and it has does deter quite a few of the pests. Those who ignore the notice have their attention drawn to it as we shut the door.
This article doesn't mention that a PDF file of a suitable card to display on the front door can be downloaded from: http://www.dorsetfor you.com/media.jsp?me diaid=157183&filetyp e=pdf We've displayed a similar card for many years and it has does deter quite a few of the pests. Those who ignore the notice have their attention drawn to it as we shut the door. alan_h
  • Score: 0

11:15am Sun 18 Nov 12

sdjjds says...

i have one of the no cold caller signs and no one pays any attention. i am sick of larkin windows knocking on my door every 2 weeks asking about my roofline!
i have one of the no cold caller signs and no one pays any attention. i am sick of larkin windows knocking on my door every 2 weeks asking about my roofline! sdjjds
  • Score: 0

10:34pm Sun 18 Nov 12

Laadeeda says...

sdjjds wrote:
i have one of the no cold caller signs and no one pays any attention. i am sick of larkin windows knocking on my door every 2 weeks asking about my roofline!
Simply ask them if they are English and can they read English.

Point to sign and ask politely or otherwise how come they didn't read the sign!!!!

I do - frequently. The new breed Larkin lot are the biggest culprits.
[quote][p][bold]sdjjds[/bold] wrote: i have one of the no cold caller signs and no one pays any attention. i am sick of larkin windows knocking on my door every 2 weeks asking about my roofline![/p][/quote]Simply ask them if they are English and can they read English. Point to sign and ask politely or otherwise how come they didn't read the sign!!!! I do - frequently. The new breed Larkin lot are the biggest culprits. Laadeeda
  • Score: 0

10:07am Mon 19 Nov 12

MattWey77 says...

I have to say that the only cold caller at my front door in the last 12 months have always been Larkin salesmen. No objection, as they always goes away when I tell them I have new gutters, roofline and windows. No harm in drumming up some new business in a non-offensive manner, although if they actually looked at the house first it might help!

More recently when walking into town a woman stopped me and said "Are you local", followed by "Are you a Christian" and then "can you spare some money for a coffee". Strangely she was heading away from town.....
I have to say that the only cold caller at my front door in the last 12 months have always been Larkin salesmen. No objection, as they always goes away when I tell them I have new gutters, roofline and windows. No harm in drumming up some new business in a non-offensive manner, although if they actually looked at the house first it might help! More recently when walking into town a woman stopped me and said "Are you local", followed by "Are you a Christian" and then "can you spare some money for a coffee". Strangely she was heading away from town..... MattWey77
  • Score: 0

12:17pm Mon 19 Nov 12

burgerboy says...

Many years ago a friend of mine got so feed up with cold callers,especially God bothers, that he invited a pair in and sat them down and he lectured them continuously for two hours on the pros and cons of the Somerset and Dorset railway.They were so bored and brain dead when he had finished that they could not wait to get out and never troubled him again.
Many years ago a friend of mine got so feed up with cold callers,especially God bothers, that he invited a pair in and sat them down and he lectured them continuously for two hours on the pros and cons of the Somerset and Dorset railway.They were so bored and brain dead when he had finished that they could not wait to get out and never troubled him again. burgerboy
  • Score: 0

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