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

Yesterday, 12:31
Afternoon tea for Nancy Bowstead an RBL member for 70 years. Ref shs 6853-21-15TI. Picture: Terry Ife

A registered blind Royal British Legion (RBL) stalwart of seven decades is saying goodbye to Sidmouth - but will continue to raise money for the cause at the age of 93.

Read more
Yesterday, 09:00
Image of the proposed new building at St Peter's Primary School.

A major expansion is beginning at St Peter’s Primary School this week - as builders move in to begin work on new classrooms.

Read more
Yesterday, 07:00
Sam Bader

Dad-of-one Sam Bader, 28, who grew up in Ottery St Mary, supports Devon Freewheelers by sponsoring one of the motorbikes, Bravo One.

Read more
Fri, 17:24
EDDC's Knowle HQ. Ref shs 7705-15-12SH Picture: Simon Horn

Independent councillors call for extraordinary meeting to debate the office relocation

Read more
Fri, 12:38
Hospiscare's mascot Ella the Owl visits the Archant Exeter office to thank the company for supporting the charity's Twilight Walk fundraising walk at Exmouth in July. Photo: Paul Strange.

Ella the Owl visited the Journal offices on Friday as she gears up for the Twilight Walk on Saturday, July 11.

Read more
Fri, 11:50
Chancellor George Osborne laid out his plan for the South West at Appledore Shipyard on Friday. Picture: Jasmine Little

George Osborne made the pledge during a speech at Appledore Shipyard this morning (Friday)

Read more
Fri, 11:50
Checks were carried out by police at Honiton Tesco as part of a drive to cut down on defective vehicles. PC Steve Lee with Tesco staff Michael Williams, Mark Dowell, Angela Lockyer and Naomi Curtis. Ref mhh 6528-21-15AW. Picture: Alex Walton

The activity was part of Operation Mascot, the rural East Devon policing sector’s initiative to tackle travelling criminals, address driving offences and improve road safety.

Read more
Fri, 11:42
First year Sixth Form students Mikey Rose, Brad Burraston and Tom Broderick

Axe Valley Community College sixth formers selected to take part in for philosophy, politics and economics programme

Read more
Fri, 10:53
The submerged car in Appledore. Picture: Andy Willterton.

Coastguard and a local tractor driver attempted to rescue the vehicle yesterday (Thursday) which is still stuck in the sand.

Read more
Fri, 10:06
Caravans moved onto Barnstaple's Rock Park earlier  this evening (Wednesday).

Enforcement officers called off as encampment vacates Rock Park.

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 16°C

min temp: 11°C

Most Read News

Great British Life


Great British Life
Family Notices 24


Devon's trusted business finder