Cumbrians are being warned to be on the look out for bogus charity collectors by Cumbria County Councilís Trading Standards department.
Householders in Carlisle and Ulverston have been targeted in the last few days with a leaflet through letterboxes asking residents to put their unwanted clothes and other items in plastic bags for collection.
The leaflets are from two different companies, neither of which have charitable status. They state that people in the developing world will benefit from the donations.
Phil Ashcroft, Head of Cumbria County Councilís Trading Standards department, warned people to make sure they know where they donate their old clothes. He said: "Itís natural for the householder to assume the company arranging the collection is a charity, but this is often not the case.
"These leaflets often have a company name and registration number on it, giving the mistaken impression that it is a registered charity
"These collections are on the increase across Cumbria and members of the public should be on their guard against them. They are an abuse of their generosity and highly detrimental to genuine charities.
"It is important that when people give generously and in the spirit of charity, that they are not misled."
If householders have any doubts about a leaflet asking for donations, they should:
- Contact the Charity Commission helpline on 0845 3000 218 to check whether the collection is for, or on behalf of, a registered charity, or visit their website http://www.charitycommission.gov.uk/
- Take their goods direct to a local charity shop.
Media enquiries to Media Officer Chris Little on 01228 226334.