Police warn of bogus charity collectors

RICHARD BATSON Bogus bucket rattlers have been warned the police will be after them at a New Year's day charity fireworks event.

RICHARD BATSON

Bogus bucket rattlers have been warned the police will be after them at a New Year's day charity fireworks event.

The January 1 fireworks and fun afternoon at Cromer is a popular way of blowing away the cobwebs from the previous night's celebrations.

But it has been marred by the occasional incident of rogue collectors creaming off charity cash with unofficial buckets, including last year.

Cromer police say they will be staging an undercover operation this year to ensure all money raised goes to the intended good causes.

“We will have officers around the town to make sure no unofficial collectors take any money," said Sgt Richard Collyer.

Most Read

“It hasn't been a big problem in the past, with only one or two incidents reported, but we are determined to stamp it out."

The team of official volunteer collectors take several thousand pounds each year from the estimated 5,000 crowd said Cromer fireworks committee chairman Jim Bond.

"This collection is vital to ensure funds for the following year's display and we aim to distribute half of the money collected to local charities too.

"All our official collectors carry identification, although it can be difficult to see in the dark, and this year they will also be sporting new highly visible identification ­ to be revealed on the afternoon!"

People had always been very happy to contribute for the sparkling fireworks display, with more than £4,000 last time, and a record £7,000 the previous year for the Tsunami relief fund.

The Cromer New Year's day action includes an all-day town quiz, with entry forms from the front of the parish church, and a series of one mile fun runs, including fancy dress, along the promenade with registration from 2.30pm.

The fireworks will be launched from the pier, weather permitting, at 5pm following a 4.30pm torchlight parade.