Cold caller told homeowner that seagull had damaged his chimney

Watchdogs have warned people to beware of cold callers. Pic: Adrian Judd.

Cold callers are operating in Norfolk claiming that people's roofs need emergency repair. - Credit: Archant

Cold callers are continuing to operate in Norfolk, with one homeowner told his chimney pot needed fixing after it was damaged by a seagull.

A warning from Norfolk County Council Trading Standards follows a number of incidents involving cold callers claiming that a property's roof needs repair in some way. 

Cold callers were seen calling at properties in Wymondham. They were in a large white van with multiple ladders on the roof.

On February 3, a homeowner in Wymondham was told by a cold caller that he had ‘seen a seagull land on the chimney pot and damaged it’.

Similar reports have been made in Hellesdon, Taverham and Drayton.

The 'issues' that these cold callers are approaching residents about include:

  • Loose or missing tiles

  • Loose or missing ridge tiles

  • Cracks in chimneys

  • Unsafe chimneys

  • Birds going into roofs

  • Birds landing on chimneys causing 'movement'

  • Cracking or failing cement

  • Loose or missing flashings

The cold callers offer to do the 'urgent' work for little to no cost, accessing the rood to complete a small amount of work.

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They then return claiming more issues were found and the price of the job increases dramatically.

Advice from Norfolk County Council Trading Standards is:

  • Never deal with cold callers looking to do work on or around your property

  • Never agree to have work done by somebody who is ‘just passing’, is 'working at a neighbour's' or take their word that it needs to be done at all

  • Never allow a cold caller access to your home, roof or gardens even if they are offering to do tasks for a small fee or free

  • Never pay for work before it is completed

  • 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 starting the work

Cold callers can be reported to the council via the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 0808 223 1133 or Norfolk Constabulary via 101.

If you feel intimidated or are concerned for vulnerable neighbours call 999.

Join our Norfolk Crime Watch Facebook group for all the latest crime news in the county.