Milton Keynes Council targets rogue traders

Milton Keynes Council's Civic Offices
Milton Keynes Council's Civic Offices

MORE than 40 rogue traders were targeted during a day long operation.

Milton Keynes Council and Thames Valley Police took part in a nationwide day of action on Wednesday, October 19, in an attempt to gather intelligence across the country about where known rogues are operating in order to bring them to justice.

Many of the people spoken to were unaware of the law requiring traders to provide a seven-day cooling period to the householder, and intelligence was obtained of a known offender operating locally which has now been fed into the police and trading standards intelligence databases.

A number of offences were detected during the day including two uninsured vehicles, a vehicle being driven by a provisional licence holder, and a vehicle containing red diesel; all four vehicles were seized by police.

Other offences included an unsafe vehicle, waste being carried illegally and many offences relating to smoking in commercial vehicles.

Head of Trading Standards, Karen Ford, said: “What many householders are not aware of is that just because the work done to their property looks good on the surface, the work is likely to deteriorate rapidly and you will not be able to find the trader to get them to put it right.

“Worse than that, the rogues trade victims and will sell on information about anyone who deals with doorstep sellers. It is alarming that three years after the legislation was introduced to protect consumers, many traders are still unaware of the law. We will continue to work on driving rogue traders out of Milton Keys; only good, honest traders are welcome.”

And Milton Keynes Partnership Crime Prevention & Reduction Advisor, Ed Allingtom added: “Rogue traders target some of our most vulnerable residents and take advantage of their trusting nature.

“People who cold call may appear to be legitimate, but if you hand over money you may not only be cheated now but you could also be targeted in the future by burglars or other rogue property repairers. Our advice is clear; don’t do business with anyone who just calls at your door.”

Advice for residents from trading standards officers is that if you need work doing you should get three quotes from reputable traders. To help with this, trading standards in Milton Keynes publish a list of approved local traders as part of their Buy With Confidence scheme.