Remember my 13 days spat with British Telecom a while ago?
Well, here we go again, but this time with Santander Bank and PC World (Currys) Both individual matters - but connected.
Daughter Kathy is severely dyslexic. She can't handle things like bank statements. She started getting letters a few months ago from Santander about something, but as we thought the account was empty - and closed - we followed the last line of letter which said 'to ignore the letter if the problem had been dealt with.
(As an aside, I have given up trying to close my old Santander account because you can't just go online and click 'close account'. I tried that, the account didn't close. I still get statements saying £00.00 ... what a waste of paper!)
Anyway... these letters have started again but we still have absolutely no idea about the reason behind them.
I wanted to talk to someone. Phoned yesterday. Got nowhere because of security. I put Kathy on the phone to give permission for me to speak on her behalf. Security questions - which she couldn't answer because we have no idea of any recent transactions or what direct debits there are on the account because there aren't any and we thought the account was closed! I gave up.
Best option is to speak to someone face to face? Yes, in theory but...
I phoned Santander this morning to make an appointment with our local (hah 14 miles away) branch manager. I had to phone the general number (they don't give out individual branches.)
I was asked: "What is the appointment for?"
"I need to make a complaint about the poor sorting out of an issue and to see if it can be resolved quickly and easily."
"You need complaints."
"No I want to speak to a branch manager. I need an appointment."
"We can't make appointments. You can go in and ask to speak to the manager."
"What and wait for hours? No. I need an appointment."
"You can't make an appointment. You have to go in to your branch" (repeat this line of conversation several times)
Me: "So, you are telling me that the branch manager is not at all busy and I can just walk into the bank and see him/her fairly quickly without having to wait for ages?"
"No our branch managers are very busy."
Me: "Which is why I want to make an appointment."
"You can't. You can speak to someone else at the bank."!
"No, I can't. The last time we tried that the minion was an imbecile and didn't know how to handle this issue. I need to speak to (well Ok shout at, but I didn't say that) the manager."
Him: "We can't make an appointment for that issue."
(me deep breath.)
"Right, I want to make an appointment for a different issue."
"We can't do that you've already raised an issue. You need to go into your bank."
"So if I put the phone down and call back in one minute I can raise a different issue and make an appointment?"
(Give me strength)
1 minute later:
I redialled. Got someone different.
"I wish to make an appointment with my nearest branch manager."
"Certainly madam. Which branch and may I ask why?"
"Barnstaple and to sort out an ongoing muddle with my disabled daughter's account."
"Certainly. I'll get the branch manager's diary up on screen.."
The scream you might have heard reverberating through the ether was me...
Round three will be tomorrow. Watch this space.
PC WORLD CURRYS BARNSTAPLE.
TEN OR SO DAYS AGO...
Went into store about ten days ago. Gave the assitant details of the new PC that I wanted. Fine. Paid, booked an appointment for tomorrow to collect it and have a 1 hour session with their technician to assist me with setting it so that I can use it (my sight problem is a problem).
Got home, discovered that he'd ordered the wrong one. an i3 not an i5.
Phoned the central number, aked tobe put forward to Barnstaple, Devon.
Me: "BARNSTAPLE. DEVON."
"NO Barnstaple. B for bugger " (OK I said Bertie but thought the other one.)
Eventually got through. Explained situation. OK we'll order the correct one and have it here for the 28th at 11.30.
Yeah right, believe that when I see it.
Well of course, the appoinment with the above mentioned elusive branch manager at Santander bank, Barnstaple is at the same time as my appointment at PC world... wouldn't y' just believe it!
Phoned the central number again.
B BBBBB Barnstaple!"
"They are not answering."
"Well I need to speak to them urgently."
"You could go to the store."
"It's fourteen or so miles away. I need to alter an appointment."
"I'll email them and get them to call you back."
"When will that be?"
"Don't know. I'll mark it as urgent."
That was at about midday.
I phoned again.
At least the chap had heard of Barnstaple...
No answer from the store.
"I'll keep trying." He said. "If I can't get through I'll call you at three o'clock."
Me: "Alexa. What's the time?"
Alexa: "It's 4.01 pm."
Reult for PC world, they called at 5pm... yes the new PC is there. Yes the appointment can be changd.
So now to just battle Santander... wish us luck!
Like I said....