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Issue:- 25 November 2010


IF you were given £500 to spend on whatever you wanted, what would you do? The UK was recently asked the same question, and unsurprisingly many said they would spend the lot on something for their family.

Over 1000 people were asked for their top indulgences with £500 during’s ‘Mecca Moments’ campaign, to find out what the UK really would do with the cash. The results showed how even in these tough financial times, people would rather spend their cash on their families than save it or pay off debts.

Of those quizzed, 34% would buy something for the whole family, with many seeing it as an opportunity to show their appreciation. One person said he would throw a party for his entire family, over 60 of them, as they have never all been together in the same room. Another said she would take her mother and daughter away for a surprise joint 60th, 40th and 16th birthday celebration and one would take his son’s football team for a training session at Old Trafford...  However, self-indulgence wasn’t that far away as 30% would spend it on a pampering session for themselves. One said they would fill a bath with champagne and dive straight in, while another would blow the whole lot on a winter wardrobe. One plucky person would even book a recording studio to record her own album. “Maybe I’m not X-factor material, but I’d sing my heart out.”   Of the rest that were asked, 19% would spend the money on a holiday, while 7% would use it to ease the cost of Christmas and 2% would clear debts. Surprisingly, only 1% of all those asked would give the money to charity, showing that especially now the family is more important than charity.

Angus Nisbet, Gaming Director for, says that results show generally how unselfish people are in the UK:- “Many of the responses were about looking after their loved ones or doing something nice for someone else. Even when finances are tough, people will still spend on their families. Indulgence isn’t just about treating yourself, it’s about making other people happy.”


RESIDENTS in and around Sefton are being warned not to buy electricity top-ups on the doorstep after Sefton Trading Standards Officers got alerted to this national scam. It is reported that doorstep sellers are knocking on doors offering electricity top-ups at special rates. Some customers are being offered £50 of electricity top-up for a cash payment of just £25. There is evidence that the criminals involved are using cloned keys for the payment to top the meters up illegally.

Customers always have to pay their electricity supplier for the electricity they use. Customers who have bought energy sold by criminals on the doorstep will end up paying twice, first to the criminal and then to the electricity supplier, as the crime can be detected.

Energy companies are working closely with the Police at a national and local level and Trading Standards officers in Sefton are warning residents not to buy at the door.

Sefton Council Trading Standards manager, Andrew Naisbitt, said:- "Please don't buy credit for electricity meters on the doorstep. People may think they are getting a great deal but in fact they will lose out in the long run. Electricity companies never sell top-up door to door, only through official outlets. Only buy top-up from official outlets like PayPoint, Payzone and the Post Office and if you are approached in this fashion, please report it."

Anyone worried they may have been affected should call their energy supplier, Consumer Direct on:- 0845 04 05 06 or Crimestoppers on:- 0800 555 111.

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