Solar Panels Scam - Kent Police Advice March 2018

Kent Police are warning residents to be aware that cold callers are visiting homes that have solar panels, stating that the panel inverters need replacing to avoid a fire risk.  They seek £3,000 - £4,000 for replacements and warn that house insurance will be invalid if no action is taken.  Kent Police advise people to be very wary of cold calls like this; many inverters can last well beyond any warranty period they may have.  If you think you may have a problem with your installation then always seek an independent quote for work.

Worried about bogus callers?

While incidents don’t happen often, if your doorbell rings and you’re not expecting anyone, never feel obliged to answer. If you do, make sure the rear of your home is secured first, use a door chain if you have one and always check they are who they say they are by contacting their company yourself (not on a number they provide). If in doubt, keep them out and ask them to come back at a later date (when you can have someone with you). If you have older relatives or neighbours then please share our advice with them, too. You can print out our top tips from

Advice about Preventing Burglaries and Dealing with Callers (December  2017)
Kent against Burglary

Most of us lock our homes before going out or going to bed, but do you also:

use timer switches on lights and radios to make it look like you’re home?

store car keys and cash/handbags somewhere safe and out of sight?

security-mark and photograph important items to help identify them if needed?

use a safe to store gold jewellery – or better still, a safety deposit box at your bank?

Burglars will seek out an opportunity if they can. Let’s work together to limit their chances.

For more tips to keep your home and important items safe, visit, find us on Facebook or follow @kent police on Twitter.
Dealing with unexpected visitors
Do your elderly parents, neighbours or friends worry about bogus callers? Would they know what to do if an unexpected visitor calls?
You can support them by visiting our tips on protecting your home and what to do if someone unexpected stops by.

KCC and Kent Police Partnership

PCSO Pete Gardner and KCC Community Warden Mira Martin are part of the Kent Community Safety Partnership, between Kent Police and Kent County Council. Pete polices Staplehurst, Mira works in Staplehurst and Marden.They can be contacted in the following ways:

Mira Martin: mob: 07969 584179 e-mail:

PCSO Pete Gardner: email:
The partnership was formed to give rural communities the opportunity to work towards achieving the quality of life everyone expects with the help and support of Pete and Mira.
Between them you have the opportunity to voice your concerns about anything that affects your everyday life in the village. They will do their very best to achieve positive results. They will be pro-active in the village, but can only deal with issues that are brought to their attention. Any information given will be dealt with confidentially. Their work is dependant on this information.
They are also able to give advice on crime issues, crime prevention, council matters, anti-social behaviour etc.

For all types of suspicious activity please email PCSO Pete Gardner direct at:

For all emergencies dial 999 for police non-emergency on-line reporting - to report crimes and incidents and non-injury road collisions


101 The police non-emergency number

101 is the number to call when you want to contact your local police - when it’s less urgent than a 999 call. 101 is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week 

When to call 101?  You should call 101 to report less urgent crime and disorder or to speak to your local officers.

For example, you should call 101 if:

  • your car has been stolen
  • your property has been damaged
  • you suspect drug use or dealing in your neighbourhood

Or to:

  • report a minor traffic collision
  • give the police information about crime in your area
  • speak to the police about a general enquiry

All police non-emergency contact numbers are '101' no matter where you are in the country or which force is required.

Kent Police can also be contacted by text

Text the word 'police' then leave a space and write your message including what and where the problem is. Send your text to 60066 (the Kent Police communications centre) and the Police will reply with a message. If a reply message is not received quickly, please try one of the other methods of communication shown on the website

The main Kent Police Facebook site is regularly updated with news and advice and allows the Police to answer your queries about policing in Kent. Please do not report a crime using this method.

The main Kent Police Twitter Page @kent_police is updated every day with news headlines and crime prevention advice.  It gives the Police the chance to answer your queries and pass on timely information. Your local site is

Kent Police have videos on YouTube offering crime prevention advice, safety tips and news on what's happening in Kent

The Kent Police online beat meetings are another way for communities to talk to their neighbourhood officers, say what communities want the Police to be working on and to find out what the Police are doing about crime and ant-social behaviour in the community.

The Police upload images, including CCTV images, to Flickr, particularly where they are appealing to identify individuals or locate people. They also use Flickr to publish pictures of seized property, trying to reunite items with the owners. 

All of this information and web links to Twitter / YouTube / online beat meetings / Flickr can be   found on the website

The following useful link contains a lot of frequently asked questions:    

A series of themed advice guides are now available as easy-to-read downloads from the Kent Police website at

The Metropolitan Police has published a guide to help recognise and deal with scams .

Country Eye
Promoting rural safety
Country Eye is a partnership between the rural community, Kent Police and Neighbourhood Watch.
The aim of the partnership is to help reduce crime and the fear of crime by involving all members of the community and protecting those who are most vulnerable. Membership is open to individuals, businesses or community organisations.
Country Eye is administered locally in each of the six Kent Police areas by the local Neighbourhood Watch liaison officers. They are supported by volunteers. Information is circulated daily to all
participating groups.

Joint working

The police cannot work in isolation. Country Eye promotes the sharing of information and the gathering of crime-related intelligence. This is achieved by using modern communication methods and the co-operation of Country Eye's many rural partners.

These include:
· landowners
· parish councils

· libraries
· schools

· river and waterway organisations

· horse watch

· wildlife organisations

· post offices

· local businesses

· rural churches


To find out more about Country Eye in your area contact your Volunteer Watch Liaison Officer 01622 604395


Download the new Country Eye App at  To read more about the App click the link: Country Eye Description.