We aim to make our website as accessible as possible. However if you use a screen reader and require debt advice you may find it easier to phone us instead. Our phone number is 0 8 0 0 1 3 8 1 1 1 1. Freephone (including all mobiles).
StepChange Debt Charity logo

Free advice on problem debt
based on what's best for you

0800 138 1111 Freephone (including all mobiles)

Wales, Scotland and northern England hit worst by nuisance calls growth

15th January, 2014

The people of Wales, Scotland and the north of England are more likely to be bearing the brunt of the growing problem of nuisance calls and texts in Britain, according to new findings from StepChange Debt Charity.

Research conducted for the charity by YouGov found that 59 percent of people in Wales, 56 percent of people in Scotland and 55 percent of people in the north of England said that they were receiving more unsolicited marketing calls and texts than last year.

Area Percentage of adults saying they are receiving more unsolicited calls and texts
Wales 59%
Scotland 56%
North 55%
South 47%
Midlands 46%
London 45%
East 39%

The charity’s findings show that people in these three areas are much more likely to be on the receiving end of calls and texts offering potentially harmful financial products such as payday loans and fee-charging debt management services.

High-cost credit

In Scotland, 65 percent of people said they had received an unsolicited call or text offering high-cost credit such as payday loans, for Wales this figure was 61 percent and in the north of England it was  60 percent.


In Scotland,  79 percent of percent of people say they have received unsolicited marketing calls or texts offering fee-charging debt management, for Wales the figure was 74 percent and for the north of England that figure was  69 percent.

In October, the charity launched its Got their number campaign to highlight the harm that is associated with nuisance calls. While for many people nuisance calls can be dismissed as an everyday irritation, for some they can lead to serious stress and anxiety and others the offer of easy credit and quick fix solutions to financial problems can lead to harmful economic choices.

StepChange Debt Charity’s head of policy Peter Tutton said:

“Nuisance calls and texts are out of control; consumers have lost control of their personal data and large sections of the population are being subjected to annoying, intrusive and potentially harmful marketing messages.

“A comprehensive package of measures to ensure that consumers have better control over their personal information and that regulators have greater powers and resources, is essential to addressing this problem.”

Notes to editors:

  1. All figures from YouGov Plc.  Total sample size was 2,017 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 20th - 23rd September 2013.  The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all GB adults (aged 18+).
  2. StepChange Debt Charity launched its Got their number: Ending the harm caused by nuisance calls and texts report and campaign on October 29, 2013. The full report can be found here.
  3. StepChange Debt Charity’s ethos is to help the “can’t pays”, not the “won’t pays”, and does not condone debt avoidance. StepChange Debt Charity always aims to help its clients pay back what they owe, in a realistic timescale and manner that is suited to each individual’s situation.

StepChange Debt Charity news contacts

Contact the StepChange news team on:

Tel: 0207 391 4598

Mobile: 07985 404 153

Email: press@stepchange.org

Follow our press team on Twitter: @StepChange

Helping you become debt free...

“I wish to thank your staff for all the great help they gave me when I was in so much debt.
They were a pillar of support to me.” (Leslie, Essex)

Foundation for Credit Counselling Wade House, Merrion Centre, Leeds, LS2 8NG trading as StepChange Debt Charity and StepChange Debt Charity Scotland. A registered charity no.1016630 and SC046263. It is a limited company registered in England and Wales (company no:2757055). Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority.

*This is the average rating of our service on Feefo by DMP and DRO clients three months into their solution.

© StepChange Debt Charity 2016