AN ambitious plan to make Arran a ‘No Cold-Calling Island’ has been revealed.

North Ayrshire Council’s Trading Standards team wants to empower the whole island so they come together to say “NO” to uninvited salespeople.

And, if successful, it will make Arran the first island to become a ‘No Cold-Caller Zone’.

The move will be discussed at the next Locality Planning Partnership meeting and the Council hope they can move things forward early next year.

A ‘No Cold Calling Zone’ is established to protect residents from unwanted doorstep callers. They are designed to act as a deterrent to stop businesses cold calling in areas that are clearly marked as No Cold Calling Zones. The zones empower local residents to feel confident about sending unwanted callers away.

It involves a massive education and engagement exercise supported by Trading Standards, Police Scotland and a range of partners.

It will start with door stickers and posters going up across the island and information packs being sent out to residents. The partners will look at ways the community can support vulnerable residents and find volunteers who will play active and important roles in providing that help.

It is similar to the Neighbourhood Watch schemes which were set up across the UK in the 1980s – but focussing on cold-callers.

For the move to get the go-ahead, there must first be support from the local community.

While cold-calling zones exist across the UK, they are usually within residential areas.

Councillor Alex Gallagher, Cabinet member for Economy, said: “Criminals find it easy to come on to islands and then simply get on a boat and leave without trace. There is frequently a population of elderly residents on islands, which makes them an attractive place for criminals to target.

“We are trying to make Arran a place that cold-callers and scammers won’t want to visit. If we have and support from the local community, backed up with messages displayed everywhere - on lampposts and people’s doors - it will send a message that cold callers are not welcome in Arran.

“The outcome is then a reduction in overall crime, including less doorstep crime and distraction burglary.”

Zones are selected on the basis of risk and local resident demand/enthusiasm.