A WARNING has been issued for people in Carlisle to be aware of rogue traders operating in the area.

The alert - issued by Cumbria Trading Standards - comes after sellers were spotted in the city selling ‘cheap’ mattresses out of the back of a van.

A spokesman from the group said: “At worst, the mattresses could be a fire hazard and at best uncomfortable and dirty.

“Sales are often straight from the back of a van by rogue traders touring neighbourhoods and looking for opportunist sales.

“But they are not bargains at all: often they are simply discarded old mattresses that have been recovered by unscrupulous dealers who then sell them on ‘as new’.

“Our advice is simple: don’t let uninvited doorstep sellers of any kind into your home, for all your goods or services it is better to deal with reputable traders operating out of fixed premises who you know and trust.

“Look out for your family and those most vulnerable in your community, and report suspicious activity to trading standards or the police.”

Those who have concerns about cold callers, or spot anyone selling items, should call the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 03454 04 05 06, or visit www.adviceguide.org.uk, or call Cumbria Police on 101.