Brendan Gomm, trading as BSRC Ltd and Bluesky Roofing and Construction Ltd, came to the attention of Bristol City Council after they received a number of complaints that he had taken large amounts of money upfront and then did not return, leaving his victims with unfinished building work.
Gomm, of Clapton Walk, Sea Mills, was sentenced at Bristol Crown Court after pleading guilty to three fraud offences at an earlier hearing. He was also ordered to pay a victim surcharge of £140.
In one case, Gomm, 51, agreed to build a conservatory for a Horfield couple who paid him £4,000 upfront, but the work was never started. The couple, who were in their late 60s, paid Gomm personally by cheque, and were also given paperwork that had a false company name.
Bristol City Council’s trading standards team investigated and started a prosecution against Gomm, who was also falsely claiming to be a limited company.
During the investigation, officers discovered that in another case, Gomm had taken a payment of £3,000 from one homeowner to re-render his house but never returned to do the work. At another property, Gomm had taken payment from £2,000 from a homeowner to purchase and fit new windows at her property, but he did not return to do the work and her ignored calls and letters.
In his sentencing remarks, His Honour Judge Horton stated that these were really serious offences targeting vulnerable and elderly people.
Councillor Steve Pearce, Cabinet member for regulatory services, said after the case: "Gomm was taking money from people but clearly had no intention of carrying out the work he had been paid to do.
“His actions left his victims in financial trouble and left them with considerable damage to their homes. We are pleased with the outcome of this case and that Gomm has been given a prison sentence.
“Our trading standards team works to support Bristol business but also helps to protects residents and help to keep people safe from rogue traders. They will take prosecutions where necessary to ensure that traders like this do not operate in Bristol.”
If you think you have been the victim of a rogue builder, or any other trader, contact the Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 0345 4040506