Biting back against loan sharks in Droitwich

7 May 2024
2 mins

Sid the Shark will be biting back against loan sharks in Droitwich this week, helping keep communities safe.

A week of action is being held to raise awareness about the dangers of illegal lending and to make sure people are aware of the alternatives available.

Stop Loan Sharks is working with West Mercia Police, Platform Housing, Wychavon District Council, and Droitwich Spa and Rural Council for Voluntary Services to organise the week’s events.

On Tuesday, May 7, Sid will be outside Morrisons in St Andrew’s Square from 11am to 2pm. On Wednesday, the team will be at the Community Café in Westlands Community Centre from 2.30pm to 3.20pm and then outside Westlands First School from 3.20pm to 4pm.

On Thursday, May 9, Sid and the team will be at Spar in Blake Avenue from 10.30am to noon.

People are invited to come along and ask for advice and find out about the work of Stop Loan Sharks. They can also grab a selfie with Sid.

 Tony Quigley, head of the England Illegal Money Lending Team, known in communities as Stop Loan Sharks, said: “Many illegal lenders are well known in their communities, and we want to make sure people know what to look out for. We are looking forward to meeting the people of Droitwich and spreading the word about how we can support those who have borrowed from an illegal lender.”

Lucy Bird, community builder from Droitwich Spa CVS, said: “Droitwich CVS and our Moving Forward on Westlands team are pleased to be supporting this important campaign.

“When someone is struggling to keep on top of their finances and have been refused credit elsewhere, they may feel they have nowhere else to turn. Loan sharks are able to prey on these vulnerable people so it’s vital to provide information to tell them they can get the support they need without using illegal money lenders.”

Marion Duffy, chief operations officer at Platform Housing Group, added: “Platform Housing Group is delighted to be working in partnership with the England Illegal Money Lending Team, to deliver a range of events across our communities, to raise customer awareness about the dangers of borrowing money from loan sharks.”

This year marks the 20th anniversary of the IMLT. Since its launch, it has supported over 31,500 people and written off over £91.2 million worth of illegal debt, securing over 416 prosecutions for illegal money lending, leading to more than 600 years in jail.

Anyone who has been affected by illegal money lending should call the Stop Loan Sharks 24/7 Helpline on 0300 555 2222 or access support online at Live Chat is available on the website from 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.