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Last Updated: Monday, 13 June, 2005, 06:18 GMT 07:18 UK
Londoners get consumer helpline
Call centre worker
The service is also available on the internet
A service giving Londoners free advice on consumer issues was launched on Monday.

Consumer Direct London offers people professional help, via a call centre in Ealing, west London, to help them resolve consumer-related problems.

It is hoped the six-days-a-week service, which is also available on the internet, will free up the time of Trading Standards officers.

The number to call for the advice is 08454 04 05 06.

Consumer rights

Consumer Minister Gerry Sutcliffe said: "Now free, clear and practical consumer advice is only a phone call away."

The service brings together all existing consumer advisory bodies across London.

Funded by the Department of Trade and Industry, Consumer Direct London is a partnership between London's Trading Standards services and the Association of London Government (ALG).

A survey of Consumer Direct services elsewhere in the UK found most callers had made savings of up to 200 through refunds, reduced travel costs and less time off work dealing with problems.

Sir Robin Wales, from the ALG, said: "This new service will enable them (Londoners) to be fully confident about their consumer rights when buying goods and services."

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