Out of pocket Blackpool Stokies birthday party after party company keeps money
Revelers have been left furious and in disbursement – after an events business in Stoke-on-Trent collapsed. Tracy Bates is one of many customers left behind after booking trips with Stag and Hen City.
She had booked a weekend in Blackpool to celebrate her 50th birthday in 2020, which had been postponed to this month due to the coronavirus pandemic. Tracy and 10 of her friends – most of whom work as carers – had booked a £99-a-head accommodation and entertainment package through Stoke-based Stag and Hen City.
But Tracy, from Blurton, was horrified when – a few days before the trip – she contacted the hotel to confirm the rooms, and was told the accommodation had not been paid for and the rooms had been allocated. to other customers.
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She said: “We booked the weekend three years ago for my 50th, which was in 2020. We booked with Stag and Hen City because I had done my hen party with them a few years ago and It was fantastic.They were a reputable company.
“At the time we were going into lockdown we had to reschedule it several times. We tried and tried to get a refund at the time but they didn’t.
“The week we were due to leave I emailed the hotel in Blackpool to see what the room situation was. They called me to say they hadn’t been paid by Stag and Hen City, so they had let the rooms go.
“The package also involved the Adonis Cabaret club, and when I contacted them they hadn’t been paid either. I went to the Stag and Hen office but no one was there. I messaged them on Facebook and they said they would find out.”
Tracy then received a text from Stag and Hen City which read: ‘Unfortunately, we regret to inform you that your event will not be proceeding as planned. Please do not go to your event.
She added: “There was no further information and nothing about a refund. I was so upset. The only way to communicate with them was through Facebook Messenger. If they had been upfront we could have had the time to organize something else.”
Instead, Tracy and her pals had to try to find last-minute hotel rooms for a holiday weekend. Luckily they managed to book somewhere and their trip went through, but they lost entry to the club and had to pay an extra £45 each for accommodation.
Tracy said: “My anxiety was through the roof. Most of us are caregivers and we’ve worked really hard during the pandemic. We just wanted to let go. I know Covid hit a lot of people, but the company should have just been upfront with us.”
Stag and Hen City confirmed the company had gone out of business and would “work with its insurers” to see if its customers’ money could be recovered.
A spokesperson for the company said: “It is with deep regret that we have to accept that Stag and Hen City Ltd has gone into bankruptcy and ceased operations. Every effort has been made to keep the business viable and to fill all customer reservations, but the extremely difficult economic environment presented by the Covid pandemic, followed so quickly by the energy crisis, meant that the company faced multiple customer cancellations, an increase costs and restricted bank credit facilities. Insolvency was not an option we wanted, but a necessity placed on the business.
“We fully understand the frustration that many of our customers and creditors may feel as a result. We will contact all customers who have package bookings with the company and work with the company’s insurers to see what costs, if any , can be recovered regarding reservation cancellations.”
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