Putting off rogue traders in Ryton

(L-R) Warwickshire County Councillor Howard Roberts, PSCO Matt Havelock, Rugby Borough Councillor Dale Keeling and Cllr Rod Clarke. Photo: Warwickshire County Council NNL-170307-095301001
(L-R) Warwickshire County Councillor Howard Roberts, PSCO Matt Havelock, Rugby Borough Councillor Dale Keeling and Cllr Rod Clarke. Photo: Warwickshire County Council NNL-170307-095301001

Rogue traders will be warned against working in Ryton-on-Dunsmore with numerous signs and stickers handed out to residents.

Warwickshire County Council’s Trading Standards, supported by Warwickshire Police, will be launching a ‘no rogue trader zone’ in ‘hotspots’ across the village.

It is hoped the signs will deter cowboy traders. Photo: Warwickshire Police NNL-170307-100419001

It is hoped the signs will deter cowboy traders. Photo: Warwickshire Police NNL-170307-100419001

Trading Standards officers will issue residents with no rogue trader door/window stickers and information booklets, following the theme of staying safe from cowboy traders.

Street signage will reinforce the message and act as a warning to rogue traders that they will be reported if they attempt to trade in the area.

Portfolio holder for community safety Cllr Howard Roberts said: “Rogue traders are a menace, pressurising residents to have work carried out on their homes and gardens that is often unnecessary and always overpriced and poorly carried out.

“No rogue trader zones have proved very successful in deterring rogue traders and bogus callers where they have been established across the county.

“I’m delighted that a no rogue trader zone is now being launched in Ryton-on-Dunsmore to help protect often very vulnerable and elderly residents from doorstep crime.”

Trading Standards surveyed residents in the ‘hotspot’ area. Most of the residents were aged 60 or over and almost three-quarters were at home for most of the day.

Of the residents who responded, 63 per cent said doorstep sellers were a nuisance in the area.

Two-thirds had had people knocking on their doors in the last year asking them to buy something or offering to do work for them.

Many of the residents reported doorstep callers had been persistent, aggressive, dishonest, intimidating, and intrusive.

One resident told the council officers, when she refused to open her front door, the rogue trader broke her gate to try to enter via patio doors.

Another cut down trees in a residents garden, despite being asked not to and stole ladders.

Rogue traders were also reported to have banged loudly on doors and not taken ‘no’ for an answer.

PCSO Matt Havelock, of the Rugby rural central police safer neighbourhood team, added: “Rogue traders call at your door and offer to do work on your home or garden that will be either unnecessary or vastly over-priced.

“They have no formal training to carry out the work. Some have links with distraction burglars.

“Don’t ever go to a bank or cash point with the trader; legitimate traders would never do this and never allow anyone to pressure you into agreeing to have work carried out.

“Do not open the door if you do not know the caller.

“If you ask them to leave and they don’t call 101 or 999 in an emergency.

“If you do think your property needs some work, talk to a relative or friend who can help you find a reputable trader.

“Never agree to any work or sign anything on the spot and if you are not sure, don’t open the door.”

Residents are encouraged to report any suspicious activity to Trading Standards’ rapid response team via the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 03454 040506.