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Cold Callers and Door Stop Peddlers

Alert message sent 21/12/2018 16:29:00

Information sent on behalf of Hampshire Constabulary

Dear Resident(s)

We have recently had a number of reports of persons going door to door trying to peddle wares to local residents and becoming quite abusive when residents have decined to purchase items.

I would like to take this opportunity to provide you with some context and advice when answering the door to unexpected callers.

Sometimes referred to as “Nottingham Knockers” they are usually young men who go door to door, selling household products. They are dropped off early in the morning in a particular location by a large van and are then transported around that area throughout the day until approx 2100hrs. They will offer to show you ID which will likely be ‘Hawkers Work Creation’ and say they have just been released from prison. This company does not actually exist and is purely a laminated piece of card with their picture on. They will be carrying a large holdall style bag which contains various household items at high prices and will try and hard sell to make more money. They will also tell you about how they are trying to make a better life. 

Our advice, Whenever you get an unexpected knock on the door, please check to see who is on the other side of your door before opening it. Either look through a side window, look through a spy hole, or simply ask out loud who it is. If you do not know them, establish who they are and what they are there for before you open the door. Please remember if the cold caller sales are unsuccessful, they are unlikely to return in future.

Some tips to remmeber:-
  • Always use the door chain when answering the door, if you are not sure do not open the door.
  • Always check the credentials of unknown callers. Do not phone the number on the ID card, use a phone book or a bill.
  • Never employ cold-calling doorstep traders or engage with cold callers on the phone.
  • Do not keep substantial sums of money in the home.
  • Always keep front and back doors locked.
  • LOCK STOP CHAIN and CHECK - if unsure do not open the door.
  • Consider joining or setting up a No Cold Calling Zone or Neighbourhood Watch scheme.
  • Report any suspicious callers or activity to the police immediately.
  • Keep an eye on elderly or vulnerable neighbours, friends and family.

The Pedlars Act 1871 requires any person selling goods door to door to have a valid Peddlers Licence, a 21-year-old man, from Middlesborough, has been reported for summons for peddling without a license in Fleet on Sunday the 16th of December following calls to Police from a number of residents.

If you do experience any verbal abuse and feel intimidated, please call 101 and tell us what was said, and a description of the person.
Message sent by
Benjamin Allman (Police, PCSO, Hart District)

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