PHOTOCOPIED BLUE BADGE COSTS BUILDER HUNDREDS / YES FOLKS IT’S: COMPOST AWARENESS WEEK! / CASHIER’S VIGILANCE SAVES PENSIONER’S LIFE SAVINGS / PEOPLE URGED TO HAVE MMR VACCINE
PHOTOCOPIED BLUE BADGE COSTS BUILDER HUNDREDS
A builder’s financial problems were worsened when he was fined for using a photocopy of his father’s disabled parking permit to avoid having to feed the meter while he worked in central Croydon.
The man admitted the charge at Croydon magistrates’ court on 19 April, and was fined £150 and ordered to pay £200 prosecution costs.
The court was told that, on 27 July, last year, a council civil enforcement officer spotted a car, parked in Bedford Place, displaying what appeared to be a photocopy of a blue badge parking permit. A penalty charge notice was issued and the car impounded.
When collecting the vehicle, the man said the badge was valid and that he had been driving his father, who was the registered holder.
Officers of the council’s fraud team spoke to the man’s father, who said he had not been with the defendant at the time of the offence. In a subsequent interview, the man admitted to the investigators that he had photocopied his father’s permit and had obtained a blue-badge clock from a friend.
When questioned about his actions, he stated that he was experiencing financial hardship and, while working in the vicinity of Bedford Place, had used the permit to avoid parking fees.
.He pleaded guilty, by post, at Croydon magistrates’ court to a charge of misusing his father’s blue badge, under the Road Traffic Regulations Act 1984. (Source: Croydon council press release)
YES FOLKS IT’S: COMPOST AWARENESS WEEK! 25 free compost bin giveaways to Southwark residents
In celebration of Compost Awareness Week (2 to 8 May), Southwark council’s recycling and waste partner Veolia are giving away five compost bins every day for the whole week.
The giveaway is taking place from Monday 2 May at the Reuse and Recycling centre on Old Kent Road and is open to all Southwark residents.
More than 30 per cent of the average household waste can be composted; compostable items include eggshells, egg boxes, hair, coffee granules, tea bags, rotten fruit, vegetable scraps, shredded paper and lots more.
Composting also helps to significantly reduce carbon emissions and can be used as an effective and sustainable waste management method to reduce the amount of waste ending up in household bins around the borough.
Ian McGeough programme manager for Veolia Southwark and coordinator of the compost bin giveaway said, “Home composting is an easy and effective way of recycling some of the daily waste we produce. It is simple to do and once you get started, you will be surprised just how much daily household waste can be recycled.”
Southwark’s cabinet member for environment and the public realm Cllr Darren Merrill said “Composting contributes to reducing the amount of waste that is sent to landfill, saving taxpayers money and helping to produce healthy, productive gardens and allotments.”
Compost bins and wormeries are sold all year round at a subsidised cost for Southwark residents, to encourage residents to recycle their organic waste.
During Compost Awareness Week Southwark residents, on a first come first served basis, can get one free compost bin per household which will be offered to the first five customers of the day.
Residents are required to bring proof of residency and photo identification with them when they make their collection.
For more information about composting, wormeries and organic peat free soil conditioner visit www.southwark.gov.uk/composting. (Source: Southwark council press release)
CASHIER’S VIGILANCE SAVES PENSIONER’S LIFE SAVINGS
The alertness and compassion of a building society cashier prevented an 86-year-old handing thousands of pounds to heartless conmen.
Joyce Boakye-Ansah’s quick thinking has been recognised with the presentation of a certificate of appreciation from Croydon council’s trading standards team.
Asked what she thought of the sort of people who try to part the vulnerable from their life savings, Mrs Boakye-Ansah, who works in the Selsdon branch of Nationwide, said: “Oh, don’t get me started.
“How can they do that to somebody who’s 70, 80, 90 years old, who’s given so much through their life?
“I can’t say what I’d like to do to them; and I’m just glad we were able to help her.”
The story unfolded when, one afternoon in mid-March, the Selsdon resident entered the branch and asked to withdraw £15,000 in cash at Mrs Boakye-Ansah’s till.
Knowing the customer, and concerned by the unusually large sum, she asked what the money was for. The resident told her it was needed to pay two men who had told her urgent work was needed to be carried out on her roof.
They were waiting at her home address while she went to the get the money, having already taken £8,000 in cash from her.
Immediately suspicious, Mrs Boakye-Ansah told the branch manager, and the matter was reported to the council’s trading standards team, who, with the police, attended the branch.
The victim revealed that she had been cold-called earlier that morning by the men who told her that a weather-proof coating should be applied to the tiles of her roof. They intended to charge £21,000 for the work.
A subsequent report by a qualified surveyor concluded that no work was actually necessary on the victim’s roof, and although the roof is old, it “was in perfectly reasonable condition, with no significant defects”.
He also stated that, had the work proved necessary, a fair price – including cleaning and sealing of the whole roof, and scaffolding access – would have been no more than £3,640.
By the time TS officers and police got to the victim’s home, the men had left, possibly suspicious of the length of time she had been gone.
Croydon’s cabinet member for communities, safety and justice Cllr Mark Watson said: “Fortunately, these callous scammers, who’d intended to take advantage of a trusting resident, were prevented doing so by the vigilance that Mrs Boakye-Ansah exercised that day.
“She saved her customer much stress, upset and trauma, and has received a well-deserved certificate of appreciation for an outstanding contribution to crime prevention by protecting elderly and vulnerable customers of Nationwide Building Society from doorstep criminals and fraudsters.”
(Source: Croydon council press release)
PEOPLE URGED TO HAVE MMR VACCINE
With an increase in measles cases across London, residents are urged to get immunised for their own protection and to prevent measles spreading across the borough.
Since January 2016, there have been 35 confirmed case of measles in London, two of these were in Lewisham. The disease is potentially a serious illness that can cause complications, and on rare occasions, can be fatal. It is highly infectious and spreads through direct contact with an infected person or through the air when an infected person coughs or sneezes.
Anyone can get measles if they haven’t had the full MMR (measles, mumps and rubella) vaccine, which means having the two doses of the vaccine, or if they haven’t had the infection before, although it’s most common in young children.
Check with your GP if you’re not sure whether you or your child has had the MMR vaccine. If in doubt, go ahead and have it. Even if you’ve had it before, it won’t harm you to have a second, or even third, course of the vaccination.
Find out more about what the MMR vaccine is, if there are any side effects and how and when it is given.
Visit NHS Choices website for more information on who can have the MMR vaccine and answers to common questions. (Source: Lewisham council press release.)