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News - 2 August 2005

Uxbridge like Brighton has had enough of chuggers

A flower seller in Uxbridge was so annoyed with chuggers intimidating his customers he decided to take action. He contacted Brighton’s city centre manager to discuss the activities of the Business Forum in this area. He then set up his own anti-chugging campaign.

Mr Cradduck who runs Uxbridge Station Flower Shop decided to do as Brighton has done and create an opportunity for disgruntled members of the public to voice their concerns about the invasion of face-to-face charity collectors otherwise known as chuggers.

Chuggers in Uxbridge, as in Brighton, have consistently failed to abide by the voluntary code of practice set out by the PFRA (Public Fundraisers Regulatory Association).

Mr Cradduck set about putting up A-boards with messages highlighting some little-known facts about the collection agencies. He informed people about the fact that the operatives are paid to collect signatures, that they can earn £100 a day, that a significant proportion of the donation goes to the collecting agency (as much as 90% in the first year) and so on.

He collected signatures from 4,800 people over the space of a few weeks. He managed to deter operatives from working anywhere near the A boards. And he helped to influence the decision taken by one of the charities after a visit to Uxbridge to pull out from using agencies.

Mr Cradduck is working with his local MP John Randall and is hopeful that the amendments to the Charities Reform Bill (see previous story in Knowledgebase) will be passed at the end of the year.

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