Shocker! Sidmouth granddad’s £10,000 energy ‘bill’

11:09 03 December 2012

shs electricity bill 2

shs electricity bill 2

Archant

A SIDMOUTH pensioner got a shock when he returned home from holiday to be told he’d racked up a £10,000 electricity and gas bill - despite being at the other side of the world. Perplexed granddad Baz Breadmore, 73, said he’d been left in the dark over the mammoth two-month tally – 100 times what he would expect to pay normally.

The whopping notification came weeks after utility firm npower wrote to him to explain why its prices were set to rise.

“I didn’t expect them to go up that much!” said Baz, who lives on his own in Water Lane. “My jaw hit the ground when I opened the letter.”

Baz was £34 in credit in September before he jetted off on a dream get-a-way to Hong Kong and New Zealand for four weeks.

He pays his bill every month by standing order and had never experienced any problems.

“It was quite a shock - especially considering I’d been away for half of that time,” said Baz. “There would have been no electric and very little gas. I’m pretty frugal and live by myself.”

Baz, a well-known charity fundraiser, said: “I’m not too worried, but it would frighten some people to death.”

A letter from the firm, titled ‘Your Bill’, told Baz of the £9,935 due: “It may be larger than expected, but we’d like to reassure you that we’ve checked your account carefully and the balance is correct using the latest information and meter reading we have.”

It even suggests he may find it ‘difficult’ to pay the amount in one go.

After a call from the Herald on Wednesday, an npower spokesman said an adviser had looked at Baz’s account and spoken to him.

He stressed the company had not billed Baz for £9,935 - but received an incorrect meter reading, tried to contact the pensioner to discuss this with him, and had been unable to do so.

“We’re currently calculating his account and have promised to ring him (today) with another update,” added the spokesman.

0 comments

Other News Stories

9 minutes ago
Rodney Cann will stand as a Conservative in the May local elections. Picture: Tony Gussin

Deputy leader of district council will stand for the party he was deselected from at the last election.

Read more
40 minutes ago
The President of Devon Petanque Region, John Thatcher, and Honiton mayor, Peter Halse, cut the ribbon to Honiton's new Petanque Club and court. Ref mhh 1130-12-15AW. Picture: Alex Walton

The petanque terrain at the Mountbatten Sports and Social Club was opened on Thursday, March 19.

Read more
Siblings Joseph and Hope Baker aged two and eight pictured at home this week after their seagull ordeals. Ref shs 0789-12-15SH. Picture: Simon Horn

Dad calls for fines after children’s ‘flying rodent’ terror

Read more
The candidates and hustings chairman. From left: Mark Cann, Steve Crowther, Nick Harvey, Mike Matthews, Peter Heaton-Jones, Gerrard Sables and Catherine Simmons

Join our LIVE North Devon online election hustings from 7pm - 9pm tonight (Thursday) and get your questions answered.

Read more
Littletown Primary Academy School was visted by international athlete, Lynne Hutchison. Ref mhh 0992-12-15AW. Picture: Alex Walton

British rhythmic gymnast Lynne Hutchison visited Littletown Academy Primary School as part of the visit organised by charity Team Superschool.

Read more
15:40
A rugby themed easter egg trail is taking place along the Exe Estuary

A special Easter egg hunt inspired by the Rugby World Cup 2015 kicks off along the Exe Estuary Trail on Saturday, March 28.

Read more
14:59
Seaton's seafront Chine Cafe. Picture CHRIS CARSON

The district council is still looking for a long-term operator for the seafront business

Read more
Waterloo House in Lynton is believed to be the oldest boarding house in the village.

The Grade II listed Waterloo House dates back to 1828 - and is on the market as a bed and breakfast.

Read more
School governors and pupils at the opening of phase two of the Chulmleigh project in September 2014

Good news for North Devon as minister makes Condition Improvement Fund announcement

Read more
Ocean Blue. Ref exe 1212-33-14SH. Picture: Simon Horn

Leisure East Devon (LED) has announced it has agreed a 25-year lease to manage the Ocean Blue complex on Exmouth seafront.

Read more

Local Weather

Sunny

Sunny

max temp: 10°C

min temp: 1°C

Most Read News

Family Notices 24


Devon's trusted business finder