Episode 7 Watchdog

Episode 7

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In the last year or so, as to the complaints we see about packaged


accounts relate to people who tell us they didn't even know they had


this kind of account. Or they were signed up to it without


understanding it. What most people do understand it is the cost. Of


the average annual fee has gone from �127 in 2006, up to 187 pound


now and then there are the benefits themselves. Research shows nearly a


third of customers they surveyed don't use any of them up and some


like insurance and breakdown cover can be bought cheaper elsewhere,


but the most serious complaint concerns the way some of these


accounts were sold in the first place. Where we see problems and


upheld complaints, it's usually because the information given to


the consumer up front has not been clear enough. Maureen and Peter


visited their local HSBC branch to tidy up their finances. They were


enticed by the offer of a packaged account which came with a range of


supposed insurance benefits. young lady went through all our


outgoings with us. The life policies we were paying was costing


us just under �60 a month, and she thought was quite a lot of money.


And then she said, had we heard about this new Advanced account?


She told us we would get �3,000 on death each, and the amount was


�12.95 a month. I thought we were very lucky that date. We cancelled


our other policy, and cancelled our other life policies. And were very


happy. We thought things were going to be a lot easier. Months later,


as they were preparing to on holiday, they checked the small


print of their new account and were shocked to find the insurance


policies only covered customers aged up to 70. As they were in


their mid-Seventies, they had no trouble and virtually no life


insurance. I put my hand up, we didn't go through the documents


that day. Unfortunately, we are of an age, when the bank tells you


something, you believe them. I had never for one minute suspected they


would do this. They would give us an account. It was no good to us.


Although their complaint happened, the bank said they were at fault


for not reading the terms and conditions before signing up, so


the couple were left and insured and it proved to be a critical


moment in their lives. -- An insured. Since this has happened, I


have been diagnosed with a cancerous growth. Obviously, nobody


is going to touch me with insurance when you have been diagnosed with


cancer. Whether the HSBC agree or not, it is their fault. We gave up


our cover because we were offered cover by them with a new account.


It is an unbelievably scary time, especially now with my illness.


It's a shocking story. Yes, but there is a happy ending because


HSBC have now admitted making an error. It says it appears they were


told they could qualify for all the benefits that came with their


account when they couldn't, so they have been refunded in full, plus


extra as an apology. We have got a result. They have accepted the


offer and said they are happy and relieved. OK, that's one couples


sorted, but what about all the others paying for packaged


accounts? Should they ditch them? Martyn Lewis has been putting some


of the most popular ones to the test. Mobile-phone insurance,


identity theft cover, three music downloads, Will Writing Services,


airport lounge access, the list of added extras to seduce us into fee-


paying bank accounts is seemingly endless. No wonder they have been


able to flog so many of them to us. Are packaged account customers


winners or losers? I have come to this north London high-street to


set up my watchdog bank account clinic. My aim is to track down


package account holders and challenge their assumptions to see


if they would be better off back with their old free current


accounts. Wright, who was first? Anthony. He pays �12 a month for


his package account for the accounting. It gives you annual


family worldwide travel insurance. I don't really use it. Do you have


a car? Breakdown cover with Green Flag? Did you know that?


Mobile-phone insurance? Do I have that? You need to register your


mobile phone. But you have not registered it? No. You're paying


for the birth of. What I would suggest to you is whether it's


worth all that money. No. I believe that there are millions of others


just like Anthony. They have been sold benefits would sound good and


they don't need them, don't use them and don't want them, and it's


a waste of money. Do you drive? It's irrelevant. My breakdown cover


up. Their often less expensive ways to do it, anyway. You're a pain 96p


will mobile-phone insurance. Could you could cheaper elsewhere? -- you


are paying a �96 a year. All we have to pay his 86p a month. They


didn't mention to you they offer lots of other accounts. For some,


once they have got packaged accounts, switching would be a


mistake. I have a large overdraft. For the size of the but so if you


have got up to that limit, I think you're in the right area. And we


found some who do make use of the benefits. You have annual cover you


use and mobile-phone insurance that you use and Green Flag. It would


have to be substantially cheaper elsewhere. Many add that bank


customers need to look at their monthly fees. Airport access to,


how many times a be used it? A not at all. If the added extras are


worth the money, life cover or work through �1,000? Trouble planning


and safety? I don't know what that is. You have a, report. A bouquet.


You are paying �8 a month. The cost is �96 to you. IAD their


persistence. It has a very limited value of. Some coloured cards give


it free. Music downloads, a film at a rental, mobile-phone insurance.


Yes. Are you getting a good deal for �96 for the mobile-phone


insurance? That's all you're getting for your money. Martin,


sadly, not in its amazing shirt. I'm in blue velvet for you. What


more do you want? A lot of benefits but why are so many worthless?


People really go in and ask for these accounts. They get called up


on the telephone. You have got to multiply it by 12 and think of the


annual cost. It's not a bank account but a package of insurance


products you are buying. Does the person on the phone get a cat?


but if you're paying �20 a month, for annual worldwide family travel


insurance, but you don't go out of Europe, you could get one for �25.


If you're at 78, and can't get cheap travel insurance, then it can


be good. What about life assurance offered to allow a couple? It did a


good policy to get for older people. For younger people, it's meant to


cover 10 times your salary. �3,000 would not cover the average funeral.


You would need another one on top. Is it difficult to change banks?


they will let you drop down to free, unless you have a big overdraft.


Look at the best free accounts out there. Nationwide gives you a good


account. Halifax will pay you 5p a month on other accounts. There are


good free deals out there. Chris. The major banks say their accounts


harbour a few customer complaints and they advise customers of


changes to prices to ensure they understand all aspects of their


kind before signing up and are regularly remind them of the


benefits. If you would like to comment on this, you can e-mail us.


You can also send us a text message. If you want to follow as on


Coming up, a scramble for those tickets for one direction continues.


How does the website explain prices like this. Needs the new guests at


pontoons. Their sheets are not exactly Snow White. We have come up


with some great names for those talks, but dodgy were already taken


because they are starring in tonight rogue traders which may


once again enraged the many up standing men and women who strive


to give excellent service at a fair price. We really have not got it in


for them. In fact, tonight, we want you to do it up for the great


Yes, believe it or not, we have always had a special bond with


those who ply their trades honestly day after day. We're all on the


same side, you see. We want to force the rogue trader's into


cleaning up their act for the they want the rotten apples to be


chucked out of the barrel. We see evidence of these shared values


every time we pull up next to a white van. Hi, guys. Almost every


time. Can you believe it? He's dodgy, you can tell by the eyes.


The point remains to be said for sub we are there for the customer


and a decent honest tradesmen and those who criticise us would do


well to remind us of that. It looks like you got a chip on your


shoulder. Really? Yes. Let's go. Sadly, there's no shortage of


dishonest companies to focus on. Take tonight's. Not to be confused


with other companies. By Our based in Kent of of of their offer and no


There's a guy appeared with a great big bag. He went up to the shower.


Turned it on. He said my thermostat had gone up. I said, I know that.


He said, I can't get a part now, it's too late for that and he went.


He later called Carol to say the part was obsolete. Basically, it is


typical to work out what the �78 was for. Yes. Thank you so much.


Feel free to close the door if you Carol Leatherby does not live in a


shower, anymore than Yoko lives in a kitchen. We thought we would


bring them together. Any way, when Yoko asked to fix a tap, they asked


for her credit card details. So they could deduct money later, you


may think, but then she found money debited from the card, before they


completeed the job. It is like they decided how much you were to pay


and made the job fit that? Exactly. How did they know what to charge?


don't know. They did, �360, a massive overcharge and a figure


strangely similar are to the estimate pending on her account.


How did you feel after that? I was set up.


Set up? This sounds like a great opportunity to do one of our stings.


You're right, but you don't know everything. You know what? What?


We've stung this lot before. Really? We called a subcontractor


out to a house in Epsom. It is in here.


Simple electrical fault, a loose connection in a plug socket. Easy


to fix, �100 tops. How much did they charge us, then?


�100, but once the workman took the cash, A Class debited the card, so


then we ended up paying them twice. So they charge us twice, we sting


them...? Oh, twice! So, we get a new house, this time in Ealing, and


we set a new fault, this time, a loose connection in the socket


switch. We put a call to A Class, who put their man, Lewis Barker on


the case. So what is the issue? issue is that every time it is on.


It works for a bit then cuts out. Leave it with me.


OK, we will. We'll leave you to remove the


switch cover, a promising start... Then we'll leave you to fiddle with


your phone. A bit of texting going on... Oh, we


all do that, don't we?! But... I wouldn't do this... He's touched


the connection, it has sparked and it has given him a start.


It would do, it is a live switch, as Lewis should know, what with him


being an electrician. He says he needs to fetch a part. It may take


a while. As he is being paid by the hour, time is money.


I'll be as quick as I can. minutes later he returns with a new


switch. How did you get on? Alright.


Great, now he has to fix it with a bit of jiggery, and some pokery.


Oops, that looks like harikari. That there is an earth cable he has


pulled out. We may need that. Lewis, don't take it away! He's making a


real job of this. Electrical masterclass over, Lewis


says goodbye. He has taken a total of 1775 hours n for are a job most


electricians would take 55 minutes. So what did we get for all of that


time and money? He has not earthed the box. This was already efforted


before he turned up. It -- that was already earthed before he broke it.


That means that the back of the switch could become live, therefore


dangerous should a fault occur in the cooker. Cheers, Lewis, you are


in a class of your own. Or he would be if we had not gone and found


someone just as bad. Yes, meet the electrician who came to fix our


lights. That is all live, he is still


pulling at it. He somehow survived. Keep watching


it will make your hair stand on end. We had an unbelievable response to


last week's story about the One Direction Tour. Seats for all dates


were made available on line 12 days ago, but thousands of fans who had


waited said that within hours the tickets were sold out. Then they


arrived later on Get Me In. Now, one of the main selling agencies


also owns Get Me In, and there is a re-sale fee.


There are still secondary sale sites. This week we saw a �30


ticket advertised for an incredible �2,139. You can also get Coldplay


tickets on Here There, for �2,20. With me is Ed Parkinson, the UK


head of viagogo. Thank you for coming in, Ed Parkinson. If those


tickets for more than �2,000 get sold, what is your cut? Well, first


of all it is important not to be distracted by chancers posting


tickets up... Answer the question, what is your cut? We get 25%.


So, on the � 2,000, there is �500. But no-one is buying the tickets.


We are a marketplace. Sellers post the tickets for any price. The


tickets on average, they sell for the face value and below. There are


people that try their luck and sell them for high prices but they do


not sell at them. Why not put a cap on the amount you


let people put their ticks on sale for? There had been proposals for


that, but they are flawed. You could impose a cap on legitimate


resale services like viagogo, but not imposing a cap on the guy in


the car park or at the venue. So the imthen is to drive the market


under ground. The security we have put in place to clean up the market


is then lost. But, if all of the tickets on your


site were a reasonable price, no- one would have to go to touts?


People are always going to buy and sell tickets. Individuals can


decide to post a ticket for whatever price they want to.


I can't get away from the fact that the more expensive the ticket, the


better for you, you make more money? We make money when people


buy tickets. They will do so when it is a fair price. Are you


protecting the fans? We are providing fair prices for tickets.


We are providing a guarantee. That if you buy a ticket on our website


you get what you pay for. Before viagogo there were two chiess --


choices for One Direction tickets, to stay at home or go on eBay.


Supposing a 13-year-old girl is desperate to see a One Direction


concert, how are you helping her? As the concert approaches, the more


people put them up for sale. It gets competitive.


So it would not cost you much to stop the ridiculous prices, there


is no need for an act of Parliament? No. When the show comes


around, you can get the tickets for face value. Right now there are


Rhianna tickets and Katie Perry. Ed -- Ed Parkinson, I have to stop


you there. Now, Get Me In offers is a secure


option for the market. That they never divert face value tickets to


Get Me In. Next, Pontin's. Remember we visited


the camber sands Pontin's last year. In January, the Pontin's was sold


to the Britannia Hotel Group. It promised Disney-style razzmatazz


at all five of the Pontin's resorts. So, has it been a Little Park of


Horrors? Scenes like this hold a special place in our childhood mem


res, the -- memories, the fun, the rides, the famous Blue Coats.


Pontin's may be a great British institution, but the new owners


stayed was right for an all- American makeover. Complete with


costume characters that keep the crowds, entertained at Disney World.


So, welcome to Pontin's, this is courtesy of a family holiday who


have had a holiday there this year. So many people have been in touch,


we have had to come up with a new filing system. There chp filthy?


The bedding was horrendousous. There were urine stains on it,


blood, dried faeces. There is Mouldy.


There was a pillow case with mould spots on. I would not put my head


on that. Certainly not my children's. In the bathroom, the


shower hose was awful. Mould growing on it that had been there


for weeks, months, even years. There is Greasy and Groimy.


We looked at the windows, there was a greasy, fatty film area on it.


the pool area, there was hair in the bathroom, it was disgusting.


Nothing for getting Dusty and company shabby.


There were cobwebs in the sky lights, it had not been cleaned for


months. The apartments were shaby. The door frames falling apart, the


window sills falling apart. Outside of our apartment there was a broken


plate tarmacked into the floor. And finally, there is Stinky...


was disgusting. It smelled of sick. The smell was unbelievable. You


opened the door and the smell hit you with force.


These reviews come 11 months after Pontin's former company was put


into administration, nine months after the company was bought over


by the new Britannia Hotel Group. The talk of changing the situation


here, it tus not seem to have materialised. More than 100 of you


have written in about the state of the parks and the living


accommodation. So, me and the gang are going to investigate, but first,


a qi question, thank you very much, Stinky, oh, mirror, mirror, on the


wall, which is the grottiest Pontininess camp of them all? A


tough choice, but it looks like this year's title goes to Green


Sands in Somerset. Anyone think of a catchy ad slogan


for it? The only way to describe Pontin's Green Sands is hell on


earth. Let's see if you are right. The


Watchdog team booked two apartments. As I wouldn't ask our dwaarves to


do anything I would not, I sneaked in as well.


The first thing as I walk into the room is the smell. It hits the back


of the throat. It is like a mouldy smell, but it is really strong.


This place is full of dust and around the toilet, well... It is


not good. It's not nice.


Oh, that is filthy! Have you seen this hole in the wall here. The cup


boards are half falling apart and that is filthy.


Look at the blood... The smell is coming from here. It's the carpet.


Ch It's got a rather unique crispy feel to it. It is filthy. Outside


we found grubby aund run down public toilets. Disused chairs by


the play area, grime on the floors and dirt on the chairs and litter


by the crazy golf. It looked like the swimming pool had had a lick of


paint. Don't think I would describe it as Disney magic, though, but all


is not lost, we can bring our own touch of Disney razzmatazz, well,


at least to the Green Sands resort. It is time to bring out the


dwaarves. # Just whistle while you work... #


Start at the top and work your way down. What's with the grumpy face?


You love this, Filthy! Get that spotless. Right, well done,


everybody, great effort in here, now it is off to the rest of the


park. Go on, quickly! Quickly. # Hi who, hi who, it is off to work


we go # Are they tidying up for you? Yes, we don't even smoke, but


that is disgusting. Make sure it is spik and span.


is not my type of cleaning. We had cups and knives and forks that were


dirty. If there are complaints, get one of


my men to come in. Just as we were making progress,


the security pointed us to the exits. It was hard on the dwaarves.


I know you wanted to make sure it was all clean, but we've been asked


to go. Maybe even worse news for the


Pontin's' guests, who is going to clean up for them now? I could not


let my children stay here. It is a health hazard. When my children are


naughty at home, my threat is to take them back to Pontin's.


OK, with me now is Eileen Downey from the Britannia Hotel Group who


owned it pontoons. We do go for your holidays this year? I went to


Majorca. You didn't have bloodstained sheets? Mouldy


bathrooms? Let me tell you, we've owned these parks for 26 weeks.


This programme is rather premature. When your camera crew were on our


part, they were asked to to have a look at the improved apartments. We


wrote to you and ask you again to have a look at another park. These


parks are townships. They are three-and a-half 1,000 apartments.


We bought them out of receivership and Rome wasn't built in a day. We


had put into those parks, 1.5 million. OK. No, you listen. We are


putting people but you say you've had complaints. We've had more than


100 complaints and these people were in the your chalets with blood


stained sheets, holes in the sofa, Knowles in the bathroom, crispy


carpets, terrible smells, so what ever refurbishments you're doing,


which I appreciate, they didn't experience them. They went for


their break and that is what they found. Are you happy that people


existed in those conditions? happy the have their wish was I


going quicker... What about the people who didn't experience them?


It was in a receivership, the company went bust. Nobody wanted to


buy it. Why did you give out chalets and when they were not


suitable? In this economic climate? To make people unemployed? We have


a programme to close some of the parks. You didn't close them in


greened Sanz, did you? In November, and out of 1.5 million people, on


your account, and 99.9% had a good value. Are you happy they stayed in


there? What about those who didn't have good value? What are you going


to do about them? Once the refurbishments are done, everybody


will have good quality. I'm not prepared to comment further. Back


to this company from Kent, not to be confused with companies of the


same name. They doubled charged us for one job and overcharged for


another. Is there incompetence down to a few bad apples or the whole


lot tree rotten? We are going to find the answer because it's now


time to call them out again to a typical house with a typical home


owner who has developed a problem with her lighting. I think I need


and a Titian to look at my a lighting. Actually, our expert has


broken up a wire under the Consumer Ewart -- unit. Should be no problem


for the manner the company has sent to sort it out. Hello. What's the


problem? I have got no lights. heads for the consumer unit to


investigate, so why is he going to the light, instead? What is he


doing? He should have started at the fuse box. He doesn't know


whether it is alive or dead. After lowering the light fixing, he heads


for the consumer unit, excellent. He's found a problem. Purple as


you're coming out, because there's a bit of a issue. Ouch, his head.


There is a consumer unit is on and this is live on. Don't put your


fingers in there, mate. That is playing with fire. Strictly


speaking, its wire, but I will have to go on this occasion. It's alive


and he is pulling at it. Finally, 30 minutes later, he powered down


the consumer unit. Will he fix it? Not quite yet. He decides to mess


with the screws instead. He is checking the tightness. I think.


There's no need for that. Why get on with the job when you can fiddle


about, I suppose? Just clip it in. Fiddling about. He gets his torch.


He is reconnecting it now. 1 hour later, he fixes it. A quick


reassemble of the unit and he will be on his way. Not before getting


his screwdriver out again! OK, let's fast-forward, because we kind


of know how this N's. We don't want to sit through another 10 minutes


of it. Wake up, you two. We may have been screwed over but at least


there's a bright side, because the lights are back on! It is done, OK.


The cable was burnt out. What did he to say? The cable was burnt out.


I don't think that was a burned-out cable. It wasn't. Unfortunate, our


So, he has lied about the cable been burned to justify the amount


of time he has taken and now Nikola says she wants to see it, he says


she can't because it belongs to her. His improvising like crazy. I would


OK, it's a good effort, Nicole, but give up. Meanwhile, he wants to be


paid, �156, double what it should have cost it almost word for a


performance worthy of Paul Merton. That was awkward. Yes, in an


informative public service broadcasting kind of way. Are you


going to confront him? Not yet. I think there's a couple of rotten


apples in there but I suspect they are getting their instructions from


above. I think this goes all the way to the top and what is better,


I have got their way to prove it. Not without some body on the inside.


Yes, Roy Ford. Our very own undercover penetration. We ask him


to apply for a job using a fake name and CV. After a two-minute


phone conversation, success. The next day, they gave him a simple


job, resetting an appliance pulls up Roy is a consummate professional


and completed in minutes. Surely his bosses will be happy. Won't


they? I've done everything within OK, speed and efficiency don't


impress Roy's new buses, one of whom introduce himself as James, so


Yes, you heard that correctly, they want their sub-contractors to spend


hours on the job. So they can make more money. How can they justify


all that time when the job only warrants a few minutes? They will


have to explain that to us later. Sky and Virgin battling it out for


your custom. Sky's latest fairy tale marketing campaign says we


should believe in better, while Virgin Media are trying to poach


Sky customers and claimed only their fairy tales are a happy


ending. Pool to trust? -- who to Once upon a time it there was a


giant company called BSkyB. It promised customers a great services


at lower prices up. I will grant you three wishes. What do you most


desire? I want Sky TV. Fast broadband. Freephone calls. Wicked!


But be warned, children, they don't always make people's dreams come


true. In a land far, far away, Portsmouth, to be precise, there


lived a man called Graham. He wanted to pay less for his broad


band so he switched his contract from Sky which cost �17 a month, to


Sky unlimited which should have cost seven pound 50 a month, and it


all went well. Until the first invoice. It was 9p 50 more than I


should have been paying. I immediately phoned up customer


services are apologise to both of they reimbursed nine and 52. This


went on for five consecutive months. Every month I had to phone them to


get it rebated. He huffed and puffed but Sky have not been much


help at all. I want to speak to your manager. They eventually


offered Graham a small discount as the compensation. But he's not


satisfied. It does that sound like happily ever after to you? No.


wait until you hear about poor old Tan Sin. She asked a skied to go


third television, broadband and telephone but they mistakenly said


that two accounts so even though she paid the bills on time, the


deeper could account went unpaid and Sky took a phone line and cut


it off. She likes to talk on the phone to her friends. Do you like


to do that? Yes. Tamsin couldn't talk on the phone up for two whole


years. That's how long it took for Sky to fix the problem. But, just


when she thought her troubles were over, they started sending


duplicate bills again. I can't really believe that they had done


the same mistake again. It's got so bad, I'd had letters from debt


collectors, and they make things extremely difficult to resolve


problems and close an account, but as they are more than happy to


continue taking direct debits of up to �85 a month from me. All across


the land Sky customers are being promised a fairy godmother style


happy ending. More than 1,000 of them have complained to us in the


last six months, so perhaps the big bad wolf is more fitting. And


that's not the end of our story. Sky has a rival called Virgin Media.


They scoffed at skies ads and tried to turn to have their broadband


customers promising a real happy ending but Paul, Michael and this


couple are review of the 500 customers who have contacted


watchdog this year. Paul checked twice the good receive their


services before cancelling his other phone and broadband contracts,


only to be told they couldn't supply him after all. My broadband


was disconnected and I had to wait almost two weeks to be reconnected.


It caused me great inconvenience. What angers me is that all my


neighbours have had a letter in the last few days from Virgin Media


saying, come to us for high-speed broadband and quality TV. Michael


switched to Virgin because they offer a cut-price deal but because


the salesman put in the wrong code at the type a purchase, he never


got a discount. I've never been charged the right price from day


one to present day. Virgin Media customer service is abysmal. They


will answer the phone in a short period of time but the actual


response and sorting things out, never ever happens. Mary want to


change her husband's account into her name after he passed away.


Instead, Virgin set up a new account, cut off their phone and


temporarily then it reactivated it with a different number. All


without telling her. It's the same direct debit which I've always had,


the same bank account, and all we wanted was a husband's name taken


off the mailing list with my name on it and we've had all this


trouble. Nothing about a new number because she's had that original


number ever since she had a phone, 50 years. So, children, who still


believes in fairy stories? And who believes in stories by pigeon media


Rebecca Wilcox reporting there. Sky have apologised to the customers


featured. They have resolved their complaints. They say they came out


top in customer satisfaction in a recent Ofcom revue. Anyone unhappy


with the service should contact them. The details are on the screen


now. As for Virgin Media, they have also apologised. It was incorrect


advice inherited from previous cable companies and Michael Froom


did not get his account because of an administrative error. They are


reviewing the process for handling such cases and are asking customers


to contact them, the details are on the screens now. Thank you to


everyone in touch about that story, here are a few more.


Smoking on TV? It should be banned. Apart from on Mad Men, of course.


That is quite cool. Any way, smoking television sets are not so


cool. Sony has admitted that a component 6 eight versions of its


BRAVIA model is potentially faulty and could overheat. It followed


incidents in Japan where owners found their sets emitting smoke.


All models have been sold since 2007, Sony stopped issuing a recall


but has offered customers safety inspections. It says that the sets


are not at risk when switched off it has warned customers to look out


for ununusual noises and smells coming from the sets as opposed to


the usual ones coming from the kids! To cut down on household fuel


bills maybe you should not rely on energy companies for advice. A


survey found them giving out dodgy guidance when people rang up to


inquire by transferring to another supplier. The research asked for


all big six companies to ask for details on the tariffs, but they


were nearly given wrong information in all. Southern electric said


there was not a big price difference between the tariffs. It


makes you wonder why there are about 50, then? Aberdeen Angus


cattle, the finest breed, chompioned by the Prince of Wales.


The Co-op are selling a steak for a premium price of �9 .3 3 a pound.


Why not it is reared in Scotland and with unique marbling and


guaranteeed flavour for tenderness, but when you peel back the label


there is this: The meat originating from a pure bred Aberdeen Angus


bull, but crossed with a cow from another breed. Steve Partridge


complained and demanded an explanation, Co-op said that this


is permitted under irGovernment regulations but is reviewing the


position of its cross-breed statement. Why hide it in the first


place? When we last saw A Class UK LTD of Kent, they had given Roy a


job as an electrician and stopped telling him to be so fast and


efficient and told them to spin the jobs out in order to charge more


money. Unusual advice? Or standard operating procedure? There is own


one way to find out. Roy has told A Class that he is available for the


next job that comes in. Guess where that is going to be? Is that A


company class? Yes, speaking. having a problem with the lighting.


Yes, it is back to ours, or at least the place we have hired for


the day. A Class have texted to see who is closest for the yob, it is


Roy who gets this there first. It is a tripped switch on the consumer


yuent. Roy can fix it in 30 seconds, but knows that the speedy work will


land him in trouble. He better call the head office for advice.


So, if I reset it everything is done within the hour, but the last


Not exclusively. Roy's last set of instructions came from someone


called James. Sounds like a different person but with the same


guidance. Isn't there something you have


forgotten? Yeah, absolutely. Take three unnecessary hours, buy an


unnecessary part and stick the old one back in. Like any honest


tradesman, Roy is outraged. You tell them, Roy, that there is


the difference between a grafter and a shafter. If you are still in


doubt... So, the company motto, the customer is always... Rich? Who


exactly is in charge of A Class? We have heard orders from a man called


James, the director on paper is a man called Jake Mott and there have


been a series of other names. As for the address on the company's


invoices, that is just a PO box. We need to gem them out to us. We have


chosen a meeting place in Bromley and asked a member of the team to


pose as a businessman with money to spend. In a blue checked shirt is


our producer, John. He has told the meeting that he needs a land Lord -


- he has told A class that he is a land Lord with many places that


need maintenance. A Class are coming here in 20


minutes. They tonight realise it, but they are getting the full


English when they arrive. This is our cafe now, all of these people


are with me. Are you with me? OK, a bit half-hearted. At 2.00pm,


the man from A Class arrives. It is Lewis Barker. The same Lewis


who shocked himself on our job in Ealing... But he's had a haircut,


look... Why has he come forward to talk on behalf of A Class.


What is your role? I'm an electrician, but I supervisor of


other electricians. That is interesting, tell me more.


I'm doing my listening face. Lewis is really bigging himself up.


Don't we need to see the director, Jake Mott? All the man Lewis says


is the managing director, is James... He trusts me, whatever I


say to do, he will do. Brilliant.


Don't you hate it when someone at the next table ear holes your


conversation and then butts in. It is so rude.


But at what point, Lewis is the bit where you have taken the money


before the job's begun, before you have worked out what the yob is --


job is, and then the job is longer than it should be as you have gone


to get a part which you didn't need? You haven't explained that.


This is BBC Rogue Traders. It is all in there. We've been charged in


cash and you have taken the money from the credit card and we have


asked for a refund and it has never come back. The problem being, when


people try to find where you are, there are a number of addresses


which are not your operating addresses.


But I'm a self-employed lex tradition.


But you told our man that you are a supervisor? Yes.


You have told him you can look after problems that he has got?


Exactly. So, you're the guy in charge?


still work for this company. Yeah? So, OK, but you... Hang on,


one second, mate. How can you say that we go around ripping people


off. We have evidence of you doing that.


You are coming out, touting for business.


You're touting for business here, that is what you are doing.


You are clearly not a monkey, you are an ordering guy.


Lewis is adamant he has no responsibility, despite telling


John he is a supervisor. He does not know the other than, apparently,


so how do they communicate? I get the e-mails, I get these through


the post. So you are like our guy operating


on the end of a text. You have never met James? 100%.


A guy called Jake Mot trbg? I don't know.


-- a guy called Jake Mott? If is he is not involved with the company,


why is he wearing an A Class LTD T- shirt? Driving an A Class van. As


for not knowing Jake Mott who is this, he is Jakey Mott on Facebook.


You see, Lewis, you post a face, we find a trace. He told us that he


claimed to be a supervisor to get more work. He put the A Class logos


on the van himself and maintains he has never met the other than. That


his friendship with Jakey Mott is irrelevant. Meanwhile, Jake Mott is


grateful we have brought the failings of the company to him.


He says he disassociates themselves to staff who string out work and


say that Lewis is an honourable trader, not a rogue and he,


incidentally, says if he did leave the cooker switch unearthed, it was


a genuine mistake. They say that complaints are few, but have sent a


dedicated team to deal with him. They have funded us for the double


charge, but are unsure about the no-fix, no-fee policy. As for Jake


Mott, he needs to check our Rogue's Gallery. There he is


Loads of texts from you. Lots of you getting in touch about the


packaged bank accounts. Alexander says his account came with break


down cover, but when the car broke down it was no use, it applied to


within a ten-mile radius of his own. -- own home. A few of you have


looked around at your accounts, and you are saying that you don't need


them. We have had over 2thouztweets with


-- we have over 2thouztweets with regards to the -- we have had over


thousand tweets are regards to the woman from Pontin's. Keep sending


your stories and tip-offs, just visit the website at


[email protected] Click where it says, "Your story ." Or you can


write to us, I believe that the address is on the screens now.


Coming up next week: British Gas, Scottish Power and the rest. Fancy


leaving your supplier for another? It could be harder than you think.


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