AN “exclusion zone” to shield vulnerable pensioners from cold callers is being set up in part of Ellesmere Port.
About 100 residents in the Faraday Road area will be given information packs on how to deal with the uninvited doorstep visitors.
And signs positioned around the neighbourhood will reinforce the message that cold calling is not welcome.
Fear of doorstep crime among the elderly has seen councils setting up more than 1,000 “No Cold Calling Zones” to combat rogue traders, bogus callers and distraction thieves.
Figures show crime in these areas can drop by up to 80% as a result.
Cheshire Trading Standards developed the information packs for the scheme following a successful trial with funding from Vauxhall Motors.
Members of the area’s Homewatch scheme have also helped with the project.
The special zones encourage residents to collectively say “no” to cold calling and report people who breach the restriction to Trading Standards or police.
Councillor Paul Donovan and Trading Standards officers will be visiting the area on Friday to hand out the packs and talk to residents.
Cllr Donovan said: “This particular area has been selected for the project due to a large number of elderly and vulnerable residents living there.
“Everyone has the right to feel safe in their own home and I’m looking forward to meeting as many people as possible on Friday.”
A Vauxhall spokesman said: “General Motors Ellesmere Port is delighted to be able to support this important initiative to help prevent crime in our local community.”
The council suggests these simple guidelines to deal with cold callers:
Lock the back door before answering the front door. Bogus callers often work in pairs. While one distracts the homeowner at the front door, the other goes around the back
Always ask to see identification. Check the photo on the identity card against the person at your door
If they do not hold any identification or you are suspicious about the card they show you, don’t let them in
If it’s not a prearranged visit and you are unsure about the caller, ask them to return at a suitable date and time when you have someone with you
If you are still not sure about the caller, contact their head office for help
Council staff always carry an identification card and rarely need to call without an appointment.