Loan sharks targetted in week-long campaign

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Unscrupulous loan sharks who prey on vulnerable people in Batley and Birstall will be targetted in a campaign running next week.

The England Illegal Money Lending Team in partnership with West Yorkshire Trading Standards and West Yorkshire Police will be in the area to raise awareness of the dangers of loan sharks.

It launches on Saturday at the Huddersfield Town v Charlton match when Sid the Shark will make an appearance on the pitch.

The mascot will also be out and about in Kirklees throughout the week, calling at Batley’s outdoor market and by the Corner Cafe in Commercial Street next Friday between 11am-2pm.

And on Tuesday January 28 between 2pm and 8pm, at Batley Sports Centre, there will be a ‘beat the loan shark’ competition and the chance to collect a free trolley fob, promoting the hotline number.

The campaign hopes to encourage people to turn away from loan sharks and to call 0300 555 2222 to report the crime if they have been a victim.

Representatives will also be visiting community groups and primary schools, and launching a competition for school pupils to create a design which helps raise awareness of the dangers of loan sharks to be used on mugs and coffee cup sleeves. Other agencies involved include Kirklees Neighbourhood Housing, Kirklees Financial Inclusion Steering Group and the Citizens’ Advice Bureau.