Warning after spate of Norfolk cold callers, including ‘verbally aggressive’ gardener

PUBLISHED: 09:44 27 June 2020 | UPDATED: 09:44 27 June 2020

Rogue traders have been targeting people in Norfolk. Pic: Steve Adams.

Rogue traders have been targeting people in Norfolk. Pic: Steve Adams.

Watchdogs have warned people in Norfolk to be on their guard after cold calling attempts by rogue traders, including one described as “verbally aggressive”.

Norfolk Trading Standards said there had been a number of incidents over the past few days.

They included one in Poringland, where a householder got a phone call offering servicing and cleaning of their solar panels.

The caller arranged to visit the property and asked to go to the roof space in order to inspect their inverter. They said a new inverter and warranty was needed, costing £1,500, but left when the householder refused.

The second incident, in Hellesdon, involved an man offering gardening work. Trading Standards officers said he had visited several areas, cold called at properties and approached people outside their homes.

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He is described in some reports as ‘persistent’ and ‘verbally aggressive’ when his offer of work is turned down. He has been seen with a red van and charging high prices for work.

There have been several reports of two men cold calling homes in the Diss area offering roof insulation. The pair show ID badges, which do not have photo identification and state they are working on a government funded scheme.

They ask to go into lofts and have been seen to take photos of properties. They are driving a black BMW with blacked out windows.

In Felthorpe a man has cold called offering central heating installation. He asked to go into a home to inspect radiators, but was not let in. And, in Briston a there were reports of a “smartly dressed” man aged between 25-30 who called at a property offering advice to business owners on available grants.

Trading Standards, based at Norfolk County Council, urged people to never deal with cold callers, to never agree to have work done by somebody ‘just passing’ and not to not allow cold callers into homes.

A spokesman said: “When looking to have work done on or around your property only deal with reputable companies you have researched and chosen yourself and have obtained a written quotation from before commencing the work.”

Anyone who sees the cold callers should call the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 0808 223 1133 or Norfolk police via 101.

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