Cornwall Trading Standards are warning residents to be on the lookout after a spike in rogue trading reports in relation to roofing work

Unscrupulous businesses are targeting residents all over Cornwall offering dry verge systems and minor roof repairs. The dry verge “systems” are a plastic covering that is applied to the edges of the roof. When fitted incorrectly, they offer little extra protection and are easily damaged by high winds.

The companies claim to be from Cornwall or the surrounding areas but are known to have travelled from outside the County to target our residents specifically.

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The below incidents all occurred within the first 7 days of July in both Falmouth and St Columb. On each occasion, the resident was cold called and given little to no paperwork:

Incident 1 – 07/07/2017 - 2 men, one in his fifties and one in his late twenties, were seen in a sign written silver / grey Ford Transit van offering roofing services (specifically dry verge caps) in the Boslowick area of Falmouth.

Incident 2 – 04/07/2017 - 1 man and 1 woman seen in a sign written blue Ford Transit van offering roofing services in the St Columb area. The man is described as white, aged in his late 20s/early 30s, muscular build with a Midlands accent, wearing a blue jumper with an embroidered logo on the breast in blue/red colour.

Incident 3 – 06/07/2017 - 3 men seen in a dark blue transit van offering roofing services (specifically dry verge caps) in the St Columb area.  The first man is described as white, aged 18-25, with black hair which was short back and sides style, longer on top and combed back.  He is around 5’ 2” tall;  slim build and with an Essex accent.  He walks with a significant limp.  He was wearing navy blue cargo trousers and short sleeve t-shirt with an embroidered logo on the breast in red/yellow colour. The second man is white, aged 22-25 with black hair which was short back and sides style, longer on top and combed back.  He is 5’ 6” tall, slim build and with an Essex accent. He was wearing navy blue cargo trousers and short sleeve t-shirt with an embroidered logo on the breast in red/yellow colour. The third man is white, aged in his 60s with grey hair.  He is around 5’ 6” tall with a stocky build.  He has an unshaven appearance and was wearing navy blue cargo trousers. short sleeve t-shirt with an embroidered logo on the breast in red/yellow colour and cap with same embroidery; no discernible accent.

Leanne McLean, Cornwall Trading Standards Officer said, “These traders are after quick cash for shoddy work. They deliberately call at homes where they believe elderly residents reside and will exaggerate the problem, often claiming that it needs doing immediately to avoid further damage. They will often be very polite and charming at first, but then increase the pressure and urgency to agree a contract. We know that they have on several occasions started work without the consent of the homeowners, leaving them feeling afraid and compelled to pay. Our message is clear,  DO NOT agree to work as a result of a cold call at your door. If you are approached or have noticed unusual activity at a neighbouring property, contact Trading Standards on 03454 040506 immediately to report them.”

Story posted 12 July 2017