Bare wires and howls from dogs ru­ined hols


Sunday Sun - - News -

IT’S some­times worth a re­minder of ba­sic con­sumer laws.

Here’s one ques­tion read­ers of­ten ask: can I get al­ways get a re­fund on some­thing bought from a shop if I change my mind? The an­swer is no. Shops do not have to re­fund any money if there is no fault.

But they can of­fer a ges­ture of good­will to re­solve – or par­tially re­solve – a re­quest to take some­thing back.

That’s what hap­pened to Joan Ste­wart, 75, of Wallsend, af­ter she bought a lawn­mower from B&Q only to find it was too big and heavy for her needs.

I had to tell her that B&Q had done noth­ing wrong in re­fus­ing a re­fund.

But I did agree to ask if they could show some good­will.

There was an of­fer but Joan has re­fused it.

Joan, who uses a wheel­chair and gets her gar­den looked af­ter by a friend, told me what hap­pened.

She said: “I bought the lawn­mower for £289, but when I got it home I re­alised it was far too heavy.

“It was never out of the box so I re­turned it to B&Q but they would not take it back and give me my money back.

“At one point some­one of­fered a credit note, which I would have been happy with, but some­one else said I could not have the credit note so that was that.”

She left the lawn­mower at B&Q and that’s when she told me what had hap­pened.

B&Q of­fered a par­tial re­fund but Joan had lost the re­ceipt and, by then, the lawn­mower had come down in price by a con­sid­er­able amount.

A spokes­woman told me: “We have not been able to give her the full amount.

“We were sorry to hear of Mrs Ste­wart’s ex­pe­ri­ence. We have of­fered to ar­range a re­fund for the cur­rent price of the prod­uct.”

The mower was on sale for £289 but the price is now £120.

One of the stick­ing points is the lack of a re­ceipt.

Joan said it was thought the re­ceipt had been ac­ci­den­tally shred­ded.

It would have been nice if B&Q had done more for her but there was no le­gal re­quire­ment to do so.

Cit­i­zens Ad­vice has some ad­vice for peo­ple who want to re­turn an item when they have changed their minds.

They say: “If you’ve changed your mind about some­thing you bought in a shop, first check their own pol­icy on re­turns.

“Even though they don’t have to do it by law, lots of shops will say you can re­turn items within 14 or some­times even 30 days, as long they’re not used.

“The shop’s re­turns pol­icy might be writ­ten on your re­ceipt, or you could check their web­site or call your lo­cal branch to ask.

“Bear in mind that shops of­ten re­duce the amount of time you have to re­turn items bought in a sale, al­though you’ll still al­ways be pro­tected if some­thing is faulty.

“You’ll stand a bet­ter chance if you take your re­ceipt with you and re­turn the item in its orig­i­nal pack­ag­ing. It’s up to them what they of­fer you – you’ll need to de­cide whether to ac­cept it or not.” A FU­RI­OUS mum has claimed her fam­ily were put in dan­ger on a Thomas Cook hol­i­day that was far from re­lax­ing.

Anne Austin said bare live wires were hang­ing from the back on a TV set in their apart­ment in Turkey.

She said her son Daniel, five, was at risk from the dan­ger­ous wires at the four-star Cos­mopoli­tan Re­sort Ho­tel in Mar­maris.

The hol­i­day com­pany said they would work with the ho­tel to fix the is­sue and oth­ers Anne had raised.

Anne, of Arthur’s Hill, New­cas­tle, said: “It was the hol­i­day from hell.

“But the main problem was the state of the electrics on the tele­vi­sion set.

“I went to turn the TV on and noticed the sig­nal was rub­bish.

“I had a close look and saw wires hang­ing out of the back held on with mask­ing tape, but you could still see the bare metal.

“I com­plained and the ho­tel put an

Joan Ste­wart of Churchill Street, Wallsend, is in dis­pute with B&Q over the re­turn of a lawn­mower

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