Pensioner's anger at nuisance calls

A PENSIONER has spoken his frustration at having nuisance calls several times a day for 10 weeks at all hours of the day and night since moving in to his new home, possibly from a computer calling his number.

A PENSIONER has spoken his frustration at having nuisance calls several times a day for 10 weeks at all hours of the day and night since moving in to his new home, possibly from a computer calling his number.

Retired Stowmarket ICI manager Geoff Kirkham, 65, has been receiving calls as late as 3am and as early as 7am on some days and has had calls every day since moving in at the end of March and having a BT line connected.

The phone rings twice at his home in Combs Wood Drive in Stowmarket and, before he reaches it, cuts off. When he did dial 1471 and called the London number a message simply says that the number he has called back does not take incoming calls.

Mr Kirkham wrote to around 100 people with his new number when he moved in and is loathed to change to another number which might also attract nuisance calls.


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He has two grown up children and worries when the phone rings in the early hours that it might be news about one of his children, who has poor health.

Mr Kirkham said: "This started when I moved in. At first I thought it was BT checking the line and did not worry much about it.

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"After six calls I decided to try and find out who it might be, dialled 1471 to get the number, but a message said it did not accept incoming calls.

"When it happens it only rings twice, arbitrarily at day and night, I never lift it up as I never get to the phone in time. I spoken to BT and they said it was a computer which dialled randomly.

"I wonder how many other people are disturbed like this, is it legal, which company is doing it and whether it is a scam. I do not sleep very well and you think something might be wrong with the family, because people do not ring you at 2am.

"It rang four times yesterday and is really annoying and disturbing.''

Mr Kirkham registered his number with a special service recommended by BT which allows you to bar certain incoming calls from sales companies, but it failed to stop Mr Kirkham's nuisance calls.

A spokeswoman for BT said that some firms will use a technique known as "power dialling'', where a computer will call and wait until someone answers and then out the call through to a salesman. She said given that Mr Kirkham was receiving calls at all hours she did not feel it could be this.

She said BT's nuisance calls department had heard from Mr Kirkham and would be happy to advise him again, including offering him the chance to block out certain unwelcome numbers.

She said: "This is not a major problem for our customers, but is for the person getting the calls, we understand that.

"We can block a specific number for him, we can do that with nuisance calls, and can talk through the options.''

john.howard@eadt.co.uk

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