HOW I agree with Sue Nelson about cold calls (The Press, February 3).

I do get totally incensed by them, especially being severely disabled. By the time I get to the phone I am exhausted. So when the caller tries to engage in conversation, I am cross. And when they then lie by telling me they are not trying to sell me anything (which they always are), I get really angry.

We need an organisation with teeth which will fine these companies substantial amounts for cold calling, whether from inside or outside the country, and not depending on whether it classed as sales, marketing or getting someone to make a claim for any kind of compensation.

Gill Thompson, Skiddaw, Woodthorpe, York.


• I WAS pleased to read Sue Nelson’s column on cold calling because I am sick of such calls.

Every day I get at least three calls from “withheld”, “unavailable”, or “international” callers. There are also calls from “0845” numbers and numbers I have never seen before. Recently I’ve started having calls from numbers beginning “+7” which, when I checked a list of international dialling codes turns out to be Kazakhstan.

Most of the times I let the answering machine pick up any messages. Sometimes there is a message asking me to phone a particular number, but the caller doesn’t say which company he/she is representing.

Other times there is a long beeping sound followed by my answering machine politely thanking the anonymous caller.

If I do pick up the phone, and there is a real person at the other end, I ask how they have got my phone number and then ask them never to phone me again.

This can result in a number of replies from “sorry to bother you” to something which I couldn’t possibly put in print.

I’ve tried the Telephone Preference Service, but it’s a waste of time as some of these companies have several lines from which to pester you.

I would like to finish by saying… oh, hang on… Kazakhstan’s calling me!

The Very Revd Dr John Ridgeway-Wood, Darnborough Street, York.