Norwich bogus charity collectors warning

Fears that rogue traders are taking advantage of people's charitable nature have arisen after some outdated donation bags were found to have been distributed in the Norwich area.

Barry Cox, who works for Age UK in East Anglia, discovered some redundant donation bags had been put through letter boxes in Poringland and is now warning people to make sure they do not use the bags for donations.

Age UK is an amalgamation of two former elderly persons charities, Help The Aged and Age Concern.

It is the logos of these charities that Mr Cox recognised and caused him to become suspicious that people were using the redundant donation bags for their own profit.

He said: 'I spoke to a lady at an address in Poringland where the bags were given out on the Monday by two men in an unmarked white van and told that they would be collected on the Friday.

'Any of our vans are marked with our Age UK logos so that sounded suspicious to me.

'I came across some of the old Help The Aged bags which shouldn't still be being printed so I think it must be rogue traders.

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'I'm worried that these bags are still being printed out somehow and that people are using them to illegally collect for charity.'

Mr Cox cannot be certain that the old bags are being given out as part of a scam but he is keen to clarify that if people want to give to Age UK, they must ensure it is the correct donation bag they are using.

He continued: 'I want people to be aware that Help The Aged and Age Concern are now one charity, Age UK. People fill these bags up with clothes and bric-a-brac for donation and need to be aware we wouldn't give out any bags other than Age UK ones.

'I would definitely know if this stuff was coming back to us in these bags but they are not and we are not using these old bags for collection any more.

'But someone is still posting them and I don't know whether the profits are going in their own pockets or not.'

Have you been made aware of a charity scam? Contact reporter David Freezer on 01603 772418 or on email at david.freezer@archant.co.uk