The buck just stopped

I should carry on with my schooldays, but I feel the need to let go.

We went to the funeral of a dear friend today.  He and his wife have been tremendous experts in Lowestoft and other china, greatly liked and respected, he will be so much missed, personally and for his huge wealth of knowledge on many subjects.  Two Antiques Roadshow experts came to his funeral, for a start.  No one knew more than he did, nor was more generous with their time and expertise.

Before that, a committee meeting that raised an issue that needs tact and understanding.  On the whole, that’s what I’m good at – never being didactic, always asking questions, respectfully and with no pre-formed opinions, doing research before suggesting a way forward.  That’s what I’m there for.

Later, notice that a matter that should have been dealt with a couple of months ago is still outstanding.  When we held our headteacher interviews, we provided hotel accommodation for one of the candidates.  The hotel was booked for two nights.  They were asked for written confirmation, which was not forthcoming.  The candidate phoned to confirm and was told there was no reservation, so booked a room himself and notified us.  When we checked, we were told that two rooms were booked for him, so cancelled one.

We had three excellent candidates and any one of them would be a fine Head.  But we needed the right one for us now, and I had to tell this one that he would not go forward to the final interview.  He had rightly thought he was in with an excellent chance and had enquired at the hotel about staying a third night at his own expense.  At lunchtime, he went and checked out and asked if there was a charge for the late check-out.  He was told there was not.  But the school’s credit card was debited for a further sum, nearly £100, for a third night’s stay.

Several phone calls bore no conclusion, so I telephoned and was told the manager would not be in until Friday evening – this was Wednesday, I think – but I could email him.  I did so and received no reply.  I emailed again and finally phoned, having been down to visit Wink for the weekend in the meantime.  I got the ‘oh, your email is in front of me and I was about to contact you’ reply.  I was promised a refund as soon as the details of the bank account were provided, which they were some ten minutes later.

Then we broke up for Christmas.  Once there was time to look into it again, it was discovered that no refund had been made.  An email was sent.  An apology was received: it would be dealt with at once, could we send a fax number for the confirmation?

You’re not going to be surprised to be told that sod all has been received.  And the manager is not available until Monday.  He doesn’t know it yet, but he’s passed zero.  I’ve reached the end of my tether, yet I’m giving him a final chance.  If it hasn’t been dealt with by Monday morning, I will require the name and address of the hotel owners and details will go to Trip Advisor and any other similar website too.  Honestly darlings, I’m very tolerant but my core is sheer flint and I’ve been tested to that very core.  So has the finance department, who deals with a £7 million budget efficiently and with rigorous government auditing, to the penny.

I’ll make it clear that the hotel is not in the town but one of the adjoining ones.  I have no reason to think that you don’t get a good meal and a comfortable stay.  But the management is inept in every respect.

Back to normal Zeddiness tomorrow, darlings.  Apologies for venting, but by gum they deserve to be named.



3 comments on “The buck just stopped

  1. Blue Witch

    Next time, simply put the payment into dispute with the credit card company. Then, it is suspended from your account, you don’t have to pay it, and they sort it out. Sometimes they send you a form to sign, sometimes they just take details by phone. It also puts a black mark against the retailer and, if there are enough complaints, their ability to take credit cards will be withdrawn.

    And, sorry to hear about your friend.

  2. Z Post author

    If we’d had any idea this would happen – but we took a while to ascertain all the details. I’ll go over in person if need be. it takes a lot to get me to this point, but I’m surprisingly assertive, when pushed hard enough. Thank you, dearest.

  3. Blue Witch

    The joy of putting the payment into dispute immediately is that the cc company do all the investigating. I guess the finance department get this sort of thing (in one form or another) all the time so are more trusting than me (and are paid for their time so less worried about using it!).

    Perhaps if the hotel had a manager who was actually on-site more often (or delegated authority to act to someone else who is there) they might get on better…


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