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Residents warned of bogus charity bags

PUBLISHED: 11:02 06 May 2009 | UPDATED: 08:11 01 August 2010

TWO councils are issuing a warning to residents about bogus charity collections following a number of complaints from the Beccles area.

Anyone carrying out charity collections in Waveney, either in the street or door-to-door, needs to have applied for a permit from Waveney District Council's licensing team and they are happy to confirm which ones are legitimate and which ones could be suspicious.

TWO councils are issuing a warning to residents about bogus charity collections following a number of complaints from the Beccles area.

Anyone carrying out charity collections in Waveney, either in the street or door-to-door, needs to have applied for a permit from Waveney District Council's licensing team and it is happy to confirm which ones are legitimate.

The council says there have been instances when companies have been collecting under false pretences and outside of regulatory controls.

Robert Prince, the district council's head of environment and housing, said: "With the first period of nice weather comes the first complaint of bogus door-to-door collectors. Waveney residents need to be wary of leaving clothes and bric-a-brac for bogus charity collection companies after recent complaints.

"Enforcement against these bogus companies or individuals is virtually impossible as they are often here today and gone tomorrow. Enforcement is normally carried out by trading standards officers and their advice is if you have doubts about the end result of the collection, do not give. If the supply dries up, the collectors will disappear."

Steve Greenfield, county trading standards officer for Suffolk County Council, said: "We're aware that a number of bogus charity collections are operating across the county. Suffolk Trading Standards advise that you only give clothing and bric-a-brac to those charities that are instantly recognisable. The best way to make sure the charity of your choice receives your donation is to take it in to your local charity shop or call the charity itself and they'll be happy to pick it up from you."

Residents who would like to report instances of possible bogus collections can call the Charities Commission direct on 0845 3000 218 or speak to a member of Waveney's licensing team on 01502 523620.


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