THE menace of cold callers is being fended off by a new scheme in Ellesmere Port.

Residents in Great Sutton are being encouraged to say ‘no’ to unwanted doorstep visitors and given the support to do so.

Led by local councillor Paul Donovan, the pilot project is designed to advise the area’s more vulnerable residents how to say ‘no’ to cold callers, who can often use persuasive tactics to sell their products.

Run in partnership between the council’s Our Place team, Cheshire Constabulary, Plus Dane and Home watch, the scheme has seen councillor Donovan and councillor Nicole Meardon, together with PCSOs Wendy Dalton and Andy Wynne and council staff, visiting homes to provide information, advice and support.

Councillors Donovan and Meardon have also paid for window stickers from their Member Budget Grants.

Councillor Donovan said: “The aim of the project is to support residents in saying ‘NO’ to unwanted doorstep callers. We have provided them with a window sticker which gives out a clear message that doorstep callers are not welcome in the area and useful contact information should they need additional support.

“All residents are being encouraged to report suspicious incidents and are given advice on dealing with callers at the door. By displaying window stickers, residents can show that they have the support of the scheme and suspicious callers will be reported.

“The number of cases where doorstep sellers have promised more than they deliver is on the rise, some even carry out criminal activity, and I would advise all residents – if you are unsure, say no.”

If feedback from local residents on the Say No to Doorstep Callers scheme is positive, it may be rolled out further.