BOGUS charity collectors, claiming to be acting on behalf of Pendleside Hospice, have been targeting households in Colne.

But even through the fake fundraisers are wearing hospice T-shirts, bosses at the Reedley charity say they are just con artists.

Three young men have been seen in the distinctive yellow T-shirts in the Leach Street area of Colne earlier this week.

However hospice fundraising manager Kaye Bartle said that the the organisation never collects cash door-to-door and urged residents in Pendle and Burnley to beware.

She said: “We only issue our hospice t-shirts to bona fide hospice fundraisers so I’m disturbed to hear that these young men have been wearing them and going door-to-door.

“These young men are not only conning honest householders they are also devaluing the fantastic work that so many people do in the community to support the hospice.

“We ask that householders don’t hand any money over to anyone knocking at the door saying that they are from the hospice unless they know the person and are totally convinced that the money will be coming to the hospice.”

Hospice officials have reported the suspected fraud to Pendle police, who have launched an investigation.

The hospice is asking anyone who may have been targeted in a similar way to ring their headquarters on 01282 440120.

Each year the hospice needs to raise £3.5million to meet running costs and all but £1milion of that total comes from fundraising.