A ROGUE trader tried to charge a Widnes couple for guttering work he never carried out.

The con man called at their home on Claremont Drive, walked into their living room and demanded cash from the man and woman.

The bogus trader fled empty-handed after the occupant said he was going to call the police.

The suspect is described as white, aged approximately 50, 5ft 10ins tall and of medium build. He had short brown stubble and spoke with a local accent.

He was wearing a grey deer stalking hat, a grey coat and grey bottoms.

The incident happened at around 1pm on Thursday, March 1.

Police are now appealing for witnesses.

DC Christopher Sheffield said: “Thankfully they did the right thing by warning they were going to contact police and calling us straight away.

“I would urge anyone who saw a man matching this description acting suspiciously in the area to contact police.”

Police have given the following advice residents can take to avoid doorstep crime:

• Always check the identity of the doorstep caller by telephoning the company they are claiming to be from. Use the telephone listed in your local phone book or off the company website. Do not use a number the caller gives you

• Check whether traders are members of the Local Authority Assured Trader Schemes or the Government Trust Mark Scheme

• Discuss any work you feel needs carrying out on your property with a relative or a friend who can help you find a reputable trader

• Don’t agree to anything on the spot or sign anything. Do not feel pressured into having work carried out

• Never pay cash up-front and don’t ever go to the bank or cashpoint with a trader

Anyone with information should call Cheshire Police on 101 quoting incident number 487 of 1 March 2018.

Alternatively information can be given anonymously by contacting Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.