Complaints from Lancashire residents lead to prosecution of roofer for giving bogus details

Crown Court
Crown Court

A trader lied about his business address to consumers who had work done on their roofs.

Preston Magistrates Court heard Ryan Knowles, 34, came to the attention of Lancashire Country Council after two complaints from residents.

Knowles, who traded as R Knowles Roofing Services, admits two unfair trading charges relate over misleading omissions by failing to provide details of a consumer's right to a 14 day cancellation period, and two relating to providing a false business address.

The bench was told on September 9, 2017, a woman in Carnforth contacted Knowles, of Rutland Avenue, Lancaster, as she had a leak in her roof.

He carried out an emergency repair, asking for £20, and arranged to come the following day to carry out further work needed.

Prosecuting, Claire Box said: “At the point of arranging to do further work to the roof he should have given her a written notice setting out her rights to cancel the agreement within 14 days without incurring any penalty. This is a right granted to all consumers agreeing contracts of more than £42 in their home.

"It aims to give consumers time to consider what they have agreed without any pressure, and give them time to seek alternative quotes or recommendations from family or friends if they wish, or to cancel the contract altogether in that time frame.

“Failing to give this information on her legal right of cancellation is a misleading omission as this failure can mean consumers often incorrectly believe they are bound by contracts that they could actually legally cancel within the notice period.”

He provided receipts and invoices gave an address of Heysham Business Park, which later was found to be false.

A man complained to Trading Standards in October 2017 regarding work carried out at his 92-year-old mother’s house - with the bogus address given on her receipt.

An officer attempted to interview Knowles and visited the business Park to try and find him.

Knowles is expected to appear at Preston Crown Court on July 9.