A Dorset plumber was ordered to pay almost £5,000 in compensation and court costs after he was successfully prosecuted by Dorset County Council’s Trading Standards Service for misleading customers.
Last Friday, Peter Norton, who had been trading as ‘Pete’s Plumbing & Heating Services’ pleaded guilty to six offences under the Trade Descriptions Act 1968.
These included falsely claiming to be a CORGI-registered gas installer, and falsely claiming to be a member of the Institute of Plumbing.
These claims were made by using logos on business cards, invoices and a statement made to a customer.
Mr Norton was ordered by Wimborne Magistrates’ Court to pay compensation totalling £4385 to two former customers and prosecution costs to the County Council of £535. He was also given a three-year conditional discharge for the six offences.
The court heard how the County’s Trading Standards Service investigated complaints from customers against the Highcliffe based business after they experienced problems with plumbing and heating work carried out in Highcliffe, and Wilton in Wiltshire.
In both cases customers had agreed to have work done on the understanding that Norton was CORGI registered. Both customers had to remove Norton from the job and have work redone and completed by other traders.
Bill Jaggs, Head of Regulatory Services for Dorset County Council said: “Consumers often face difficulties in selecting traders to carry out plumbing and heating jobs in their homes. They are entitled to rely on claims such as logos and we will continue to take appropriate enforcement action where consumers are misled in this way.'