A 101-year-old woman who was tricked by distraction burglars who stole £400 from her purse has urged others to be extra careful when cold callers knock at their door.
Win Vine had the money stolen when the distraction burglars came to her Lincoln Road home in Northborough at about 7pm on May 24.
One man came into her home pretending to be from Anglian Water.
Mrs Vine, a previous winner of a Pride in Peterborough award, said: “I should not have taken my chain off the door.
“The man banged on the door, and said he was a workman, and they had punctured a water pipe. His friend showed me an ID card, but I could not read it.
“He asked me to empty my sink cupboard out, and stand by the running tap. I told him I was 101, and he just laughed. “He went off, and kept coming back saying ‘you are doing a good job.’ Then he was gone.”
Mrs Vine said she only found out later that money had been taken from her purse. She said: “I had two weeks pension in my purse. Nothing was out of place.
“It was later in the evening when I thought ‘I wonder if he has taken anything.’ I looked in my purse, and the money had been taken. He had even closed my purse after he had taken it. Two bank cards were also left there. I’m a survivor, and at least all they took was money. But I should have realised not to let him in. I should have left the chain on the door.”
Mrs Vine said the man that came into her home was English, tall, blonde and clean shaven. She described him as being in his 40s.
Police have now released a CCTV image of a man they want to trace in connection with the incident.
Anglian Water reported there had been reports of bigus callers claiming to work for them in the Peterborough area at the end of May.
Carol Aston, Community safety officer for Cambridgehsire police, said: “This type of crime has not been seen in Peterborough for some years now - there have been two more in Huntingdonshire villages on 17th and 24th May.
“Nationally there has been an increase and water companies are urging families and neighbours of elderly people they are aware of to set up a password scheme and try and encourage the elderly person to use it. Please pass this message to as many people as you can to try and get the message across to ask for ID and ask for a password if anyone says they are there to do work.”
Anyone with information can call Cambridgeshire police on 101, or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.