London Trading Standards Week

The Royal Borough took part in a week organised by London Trading Standards (LTS), focusing on work across London to tackle the following:

The week gives an oversight of our work. Some done during the year, some especially for the week. Trading Standards are based in the individual boroughs in the city, but LTS co-ordinates projects across the boundaries to maximise the value for money and the impact of work in some areas.

Our contribution is described below. For information about the picture London-wide go to London Trading Standards Week

Unsafe goods

Every mains socket supplies a potentially fatal voltage, but many everyday electrical goods require a safer amount. This step down is achieved by adaptors and chargers.

Our Trading Standards team enforces laws requiring these goods to be safe, and during June and August this year seized 170 unsafe adaptors and similar items, and 21 small kitchen appliances.

This reflects other safety work throughout the capital. For London Trading Standards week the main issue was the safety of tyres, particularly reconditioned ones.

Scamming the vulnerable

Trading Standards worked with the Forum for Older Residents on a scams awareness day on the 11 September at Binbrook House Sutton Way, W10. 

The event was well attended, and we had support from friends against scams, community safety, and the Stop Loan Sharks Campaign. It is part of the efforts we make throughout the year to protect the vulnerable.

For more about the picture throughout the capital check the London Trading Standards Week page.

For general information go to our Recognising Scams page

Sales of Cars

Cars are among the most expensive purchases we make. Even with legitimate sellers they have had varying levels of wear, tear and care. But at least, if the service history and the mileage reading are correct, buyers can make some allowance for that.

In the last 18 months our Trading Standards team investigated no less than 38 sales or offers in the borough where the mileage appears to have been wound back or service records falsified. Those involved are alleged to have falsified the details for 100 cars in total. We started in the Royal Borough, but we will investigate the whole picture.

As many of these sales are connected, the investigations are on-going, and they are a significant part of our work to protect consumers and honest businesses.

For advice about buying cars go to the Citizens Advice website.

To get a better idea of the work throughout London, go to the London Trading Standards website.

The letting business

The council have already fined several letting agents up to £5,000 for not displaying their fees correctly or not being members of a redress scheme. We remain determined to encourage a fairer and more transparent market in lettings.

Our landlords, agents and management companies page has advice and links to other resources.

More details, and information on what renters can do is available at London Trading Standards.

Selling alcohol, tobacco or knives to kids

Young drinkers are gambling with their health and can behave anti-socially. Retailers can help protect them by not selling alcohol to under 18s. It is also a crime if they do sell.

On 1 September our Trading Standards team worked with a young volunteer to test a number of shops. Out of 4 tested 3 sold to the 16-year-old. As many claim to operate a challenge 25 policy*, and we have offered several training events, this is a disappointing result, and each case will be investigated.

These tests were made as part of London Trading Standards week, where teams across the capital co-operate to maximise the impact of this work. Other goods such as knives and tobacco are involved, and work is also done on illicit tobacco such as counterfeits. The results show why we remain vigilant, and continue to make these tests throughout the year.

*Challenge 25 requires shops to ask anyone who does not appear to be at least 25 for ID before selling alcohol or cigarettes.  It effectively builds in room for error.

Last updated: 22 February 2021