Dear Mr Darren Hall – Head of Credit Management

I am writing in reply to your letter dated 01 November 2010 where you state I have recently left Virgin Media and have absentmindedly forgotten to pay an outstanding amount of £42.66 to you. This will be in the aftermath of the numerous attempts I have made to try and speak to somebody within your organisation regarding my disconnection back in JUNE!!!

During my most recent phone call, I spent 37 minutes on the phone and spoke to 5 different people, all of whom had to pass me on to somebody else to rectify your embarrassing situation. This call ended with your disconnection team and for the umpteenth time I explained that after moving I had failed to cancel my direct debit with you and I was still paying monthly rates which needed to be refunded TO ME.

Apparently there are lots of notes on my ‘screen’ but they all fail to solve this simple issue.

Let me make this easy for you..

  1. I left Virgin Media on 28th June 2010, when we moved house I was told there would be one final payment in July.
  2. I discovered in September that I was still being billed by Virgin Media and started to get in touch with you in order to have the August and September payments refunded. I cancelled my direct debit in order to prevent any more payments being taken.
  3. I email you via the Contact Us button on your website – to this day I haven’t received a reply.
  4. I speak repeatedly, on more than four separate occasions, to various members of staff from Customer Services, Redirection, accounts and many others. I email you via your website again and never receive a reply.
  5. One kind lady in October discovers I haven’t even been disconnected yet and promptly justifies that, she then tries to sell me your latest offers before I put the phone down (?) I am no longer one of your customers!!!
  6. During my last phone call, after a further massive round of chatting with various departments, I spoke to a gentleman who apologised profusely for this enormous cock up and promises me a letter will be in the post with a cheque for the outstanding amount. I believed him and sat back in my chair waiting.
  7. I receive a bill for £84.00 – missed payments. (How did you reach that sum?)
  8. I telephone you again and get passed from pillar to post. After a 30 minute phone call I am promised this situation is now corrected and I will receive a letter in the post to that effect.
  9. I receive your letter asking me for £42.66 (How did you reach that sum?)

Mr Hall, I am at a loss as what to do here. No matter how many people I speak to nobody wants to give me my money back. It seems that people simply cannot leave Virgin Media as the computer doesn’t know how to close down an account. You have thousands of people on your payroll who can’t do anything but the most meaningless tasks, as anything out of the ordinary requires a ‘Must speak to my manager, can I put you on hold?’ Why isn’t the manager being flagged up the minute I call in? Why isn’t the manager stepping in and sorting out this incredibly simple situation immediately instead of letting it drag on and exasperate me even more?

 Mr Hall, I cannot email you via your website as there is no one at the other end picking up the emails and replying.

I cannot telephone you as your staff can’t cope with this simple request and pass me on to somebody else, who also can’t.

I refuse to pay for services that I haven’t used but fear that the only way I shall get to speak to somebody from the Virgin Media organisation is if we go to court! At least then I can look you in the eyes and explain in Very Easy Words

You Owe Me Two Months Payment Please Refund Now.

And we’re quits, job done!

I would like to advise you that I shall be copying the content of this letter to my blog www.marisworld.wordpress.com it will be the second unhappy post I blog regarding Virgin Media. The post will also be tweeted via Twitter (and I ‘follow’ Virgin Media in the hope that they pick up on this situation). I hope people comment on the blog and retweet to infinity because in this day and age of high technology and the expansion of enormous organisations like Virgin Media who declare millions of pounds profit at the end of their financial year I find it atrocious that paying customers cannot speak to somebody within the organisation and rectify the simplest of tasks.

Is it a case of having grown so much there is no longer any contact with the people who actually make your billions of profits per year?

Your company has a massive flaw that needs to be corrected at earliest. It’s pointless investing millions of pounds a year on a very successful advertising and marketing campaign IF you can’t follow through with a decent and capable customer services.

Please, please Mr Hall, can you look into this for me and see that this situation is terminated as soon as possible?

 Thanking you in advance for your kind attention to this matter

Yours sincerely

I’t s D-Day over at Jenny Matlock’s Alphabe Thursday today and I have decided to use this letter to catch you up on my DIY shenanigans, the living room you have seen and although not yet quite finished as I’m still waiting for the mirror to arrive from mirrorworld (paid in full in August!) and a few other bits and pieces, we are nearly there. In fact I had only just put the paint pots away in the garage and cleaned out my brushes when I noticed the girls had added their special touch too, can you see their scribblings on the far wall? Little treasures

Our second project we’ve taken on is the upstairs family bathroom which on viewing looked like this – outdated, tired and in need of an injection of the 21st century.

In need of lurrve

Away with the dirty shower curtain, towel rail, wallpaper, tiles and bathroom suite minus the toilet which we’re keeping it now looks like this

Hard work done – now for the pretty bit

I have the tiles, grout, mosaic border I’m just missing my tiler Heath who phoned in last Friday to say he’d gone down with a bug, sickness and diarrhoea so I am praying he’ll be fit to work this Saturday and we can start to see a more finished bathroom. The bath you can see is  our brand new ‘P’ shaped bath and if you study the mirror (which I am not prying off the wall as I don’t want 7 years bad luck – Heath can do that!) you’ll see the pipe and electrical cable in place for the shower unit.

I haven’t decided on the floor yet, those tiles you see are already cracked as the floorboards move so it wouldn’t be worth putting down fresh tiles again only to see them crack too. I have been looking at Amticotiles but I’m going to wait until the bathroom is finished and then decide. I am hoping the cupboard above the toilet can be tiled to create a place where I can put up a couple of glass shelves and use as display, I will buy a floor cabinet to house all of the many products needed in the bathroom to keep them tidy and as the whole scheme is very neutral I have invested in purple towels to add a bit of life in there :)

Oh la la!

Just before you go, my other ‘d’ could have been Doughnuts

But that would just be unkind of me to put that thought in your mind – right?

We moved house back in June and you must remember me calling to deactivate my service with you? We spent quite some time on the telephone whilst you tried in vain to make me change my mind. But after 4 years with you and long talks with my other half we realised we never used any of the TV channels, both of us have mobile phone contracts allowing us to phone anywhere in the UK at any time making our landline pretty redundant and my mobile phone company had just offered me an’ impossible to refuse’ Dongle offer.

Sadly we parted ways and very cleverly you asked for my new address in order to send through final documents and so on. I was also advised that I would have to pay a month’s charges in July for reasons only you know. Maybe I had informed you of my change too late in the day? Whatever, one more month and we part ways.

Only that’s not the case. I noticed on my September statement that you are still collecting £34.99 by direct debit. Of course silly me for not deleting it but first I had to wait for the July payment to go out and then I forgot as summer and the new house took over. But surely this shouldn’t be a problem?I have moved and I had informed you. I have paid my dues, all of them and I continue to receive post on a regular basis from you, at my new address – no final documents though as you had stipulated in order to get my address?

I accessed your website and logged on to my old account and I emailed customer services with this problem, that was on Sept 14th and to date I still have had no reply.

Is there a Customer Services department or is it just for show?

I tried calling your 0845 number with that very tiresome girl spending my money as she blathers on about websites and options to choose from. To date I have tried all of the options and after waiting for exhausting amounts of time I have put the phone down on you, annoyed that it is increasingly difficult to talk to anyone.

I have also been contacted twice by you over the weekend, nice young ladies who want to ‘update’ my details. Twice I have gone through the above explanation, on Friday evening I was told there were lots of notes on my account explaining my situation and final changes hadn’t been made. I would have to speak to Removals. I was given the 0845 454 1111 number to call.

I tried but couldn’t get through to anyone. Can they see my number on a screen and therefore avoid me?

Funnily enough another member of staff called me on Saturday to ‘update’ my details again. Does nobody talk to each other in your office? Again I explained my situation, agai, she could see from the notes on her screen that there was a problem. This young lady asked me to hold why she tried to put me through to someone who could help and I was left on hold. I stayed on hold for 20 minutes. Every now and then I would be deafened with a Rolling Stones track but then all I could hear was nothing so I put the phone down and waited for the young lady to get back to me and tell me what had happened.

I’m still waiting.

I am hoping that your incredibly successfully company can see that there are flaws in your system that needs correcting.

  • Customer Services email option on the web site.
  • Your moving house/leaving us option needs a good kick up where the sun don’t shine
  • Your dreadful telephone service which keeps busy clients hanging around forever or just refers to your website I DON’T WANT THE WEB, I WANT TO SPEAK TO A HUMAN.
  • Your’ updating info’ team – they need updating!

I hope this has been useful to you and I look forward to receiving my two payments of £34.99 taken erroneously from my account.

Thank you,

One annoyes and unsatisfied ex customer

10 days off, all one after the other and no fixed plans. That’s what we have in store and day 1 is today.

DIY lounge

Of course the British weather has decided to play up and therefore, not beaten, Day 1 will be dedicated to decorating.

As I write on one side of the room Paul is stripping on the other – wallpaper that is! :)

The walls underneath aren’t too bad, they will need sanding a bit which I hate as dust seems to reach every nook and cranny in the house and I have painted some squares of colour on my newly plastered wall. I have chosen from the Dulux colour charts, 3 options from the Light and Space range and 3 options from the Once range. Maybe they’d like to send me one of their Paint Pods to trial and review? :)

shades of white paint

As per usual I have gone for plain light colours which I think make the room look open, airy and give an impression of more space. I do love seeing all the colours used in magazines but fear I would get fed up with them after a while and seeing as I won’t be convincing Paul to change the room every time a colour goes out of fashion this seems to be the best option. My choices are from the left, Frosted Dawn, Jasmine shimmer, Coastal glow, Barley white, Almond white (which we used at our last home for the front room) and Ivory Lace. So far my two favourites are Coastal glow and Ivory lace, luckily Paul agrees although he’d rather piant the room like the Spanish restaurant La Tasca ie terracotta and yellow!

I am hoping ladies and gentlemen that by the end of next week I will have photos of our finished Living room to show off.

Yesterday I went through the Next Made2order curtains and requested to be sent four samples to try out. The window is a large one, 3 metres across so will need a lot of material to cover it. we’re looking at at leat £200 – and that’s sale prices!

As for the fireplace I was toying with the idea of spraying it white as I’m not overkeen on the dark wood look but right now I’m going to wait until it’s all decorated and see then if it needs doing or not.

I have been looking at light fittings  as we have two wall lights and two ceiling lights. At the moment they are 2 x 80’s faded green shades a la Amityville Horror, remember the fringed lampshades?

bare wall

And a mirror for over the fireplace. Have a look at the photo here to see what we found scratched into the wall under the paper….Paul! How freaky is that? It must be a sign that we’re on the right track surely?  Shame we didn’t find a hidden letter going back to the 60’s when the house was built, maybe with directions to a buried treasure…yes,with X marks the spot!

It’s weird, but having just looked at a few bits to furnish the room, without choosing anything ridiculously expensive, I’ve managed to tot up about £750, that includes a new coffee table admittedly but it does show that it’s easy to spend a grand before you’ve even thought of changing your suite! Which of course I’d love to but we need to completely revamp the upstairs bathroom first (future blog material!)

And with all of this going on we also have friends round for a take away tonight…with their children so that’ll be a mad rush to get the place looking relatively tidy in time.

lounge

We have been here for almost a month now, we’ve unpacked all of the boxes, tackled some of the garden, found places for everything to live, held two successful BBQs, settled the girls in very nicely indeed and hopefully completed all of the Change Of Addresses that needed doing apart from DVLA and a couple of others.

Now it’s time to start on the mammoth task lying in front of us – that of updating the house. Bringing this 1960’s property into the third millenium.

Of course to do all of it immediately is impossible unless of course I win tonight’s Euro lottery in which case I’d probably move to a mansion and keep this as a ‘project’ to while away my luxurious days.

lounge

So we have decided unanimously to tackle the living room as it’s the place we spend most time in and host when people come to see us.

The photos before we moved in show quite clearly a striped wallpaper which I’m afraid I don’t like and a dark wooden surround to the fireplace, which again I don’t like. Here are some other photos for you to gain an insight of what I’m up against and to allow you to appreciate the wonderful work we shall perform in this room. :)

lounge

So here’s the plan….please note the previous owners have covered the only radiator in the room with a plasterboard wall and two grids to allow a little of the heat into the room.

So one wall to come down and who knows what we’ll find behind it apart from the rolls of wallpaper already stashed there?

The fireplace I’m considering spraying white or off white for now.

The curtains are coming down! Whoever chose those to go with stripy wallpaper? I have nets at the window which again I don’t like and so I’m currently sourcing an alternative and thinking of blinds, not vertical or venetian though.

The two wall lamps with their Amityville Horror shades need changing. (Why green?)

We also need to add a second radiator and move the other as the long term plan is to open up the room to the kitchen behind and make it open plan.

This weekend however, we’ll be concentrating on emptying out the garage of all their old pots of paint, bits of carpet, lumps of wood and rubbish stacked neatly on the back shelves.

We’ll cut even more back of the overgrown garden and spend hours shreding it and possibly start to bring down the plasterboard wall in the lounge.

Busy times, have a great weekend all xx