Issued By
Durham County Council


Pensioners in County Durham were today warned not to get reeled in by high pressure fish sellers.

Durham County Council's Trading Standards service is urging people to be on their guard against 'intimidating' doorstep salesmen.

The warning comes after reports that four men are operating in the Durham area using a blue F-registration Ford van that does not appear to be refrigerated.

The men are said to be dressed in tracksuits and anoraks and appear to be unaware of current food standards legislation.

Similar descriptions were given following an incident in Trimdon earlier this month when an elderly woman was intimidated into buying £140-worth of fish.

Philip Holman, the County Council's Head of Trading Standards, said: "We're very concerned about the tactics that these people may be employing and the source of their fish.

"Everyone would do well to avoid buying fish from unknown sources, especially when it is unlikely to have been refrigerated," he said.

Councillor Don Ross, Deputy Leader of the County Council, said: "We're working with our many partners to make our communities feel safe and secure and the best advice is don't buy from uninvited doorstep callers and always use a door chain."

Anyone with information about the fish sellers is asked to contact Trading Standards on 0845 330 3313.

Note to News Editors: For further information contact Craig Hudson, divisional manager, on 0191 383 3707 or Philip Holman, Head of Trading Standards, on 0191 383 3791.