Oldham Council’s Trading Standards Department has successfully prosecuted a gardening business for falsely claiming to be a member of several trade associations in its adverts.
Officers were first alerted to Nice and Tidy Garden and Landscaping Services by one of the trade associations after falsely using their logo on adverts
The business, based on Oldham Road, Failsworth claimed to be a member of the Checkatrade and Trustatrader schemes – directories for trusted traders. Enquiries confirmed that the business had never been a member of either.
The business was continuing to falsely claim membership in its advertising despite having previously being issued with a warning by trading standards for making the same false claims more than a year earlier in other newspapers.
When he appeared in court, Michael Collins, 28, also of Oldham Road, Failsworth trading as Nice and Tidy Gardening Services pleaded guilty to four criminal offences under The Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008. He was ordered to pay a £3,000 fine plus costs of £1,550 and a victim surcharge of £190.
Councillor Jean Stretton, Oldham Council’s Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods, said: “Finding a great tradesperson isn't easy, that’s why people use trusted sources of information.
“This business was falsely claiming to be something it wasn’t, so they could take money from unsuspecting residents. The Council will continue to take action against fraudulent behaviours to protect residents and communities.”
Further advice on your consumer rights can be found by calling freephone 0808 223 1133 or visiting https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/consumer/