Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Angry old woman

Ever felt like something was conspiring against you? I am normally a reasonably calm, outgoing kinda gal, but the last couple of days………….

Firstly, I had had a disagreement with a bank. I had a current account, and a savings account with them for several years. The funds in the current account were never used as my main current account; it was an account for holidays, or unexpected expenses. I went to buy my new laptop a couple of months ago and had the embarrassment of having the card turned down. On investigation, I realised the card was out of date, and no new card had been sent out. I phoned the bank,spoke to man in Basildon), and the man checked the computer and confirmed that the account had no new card issued because of lack of use of the account, I checked the card for the  small savings account, no new card had been issued for that for the same reason, and I had a credit card, that account had been cancelled due to lack of use. I had received no communication from the bank regarding any of this.
He agreed to issue me with a new debit card, together with a new card for the savings account (and PIN as I had long forgotten it), but nothing could be done re the credit card, I would need to apply for a new one!)

I called into the branch a few weeks later, as I had received the new debit card, but nothing in respect of the savings account. At the meeting, I was informed that a letter had been issued in respect of the credit card, as this is required by law. I explained I had no such letter. But no communication regarding the decision to not issue new cards for the 2 account was issued by them as this is not their policy! I inquired re the new card and PIN for the savings, well I was told, they have all been issued, did I have a problem with my postman!!!!!

I explained that I was concerned at the complete lack of service and communication. The money in the current account is my money, but they had basically cut me off from my funds, except by coming into the branch. No comment was made except “not their policy!!”  I then discussed the saving account, again told I must have a problem with my postman, “well” says I, “in that case I had better close the account as someone might have the new card and the new PIN.” The account was closed and cash collected. So I returned to the current account, I would like £600 cash now, oh no, I was told £500 max. That was it for me, I told her to give me £500 and arrange to have the account closed and a cheque for the balance issued to me. She collected the cash, then told me I couldn’t close the account and get a cheque for the balance the same day…………………… so I post dated the required forms for the next day.

Last week I got a page of a statement showing the withdrawal and the current balance, so I got on the phone. I had to try over and over before I managed to get a person to speak to, she was in an English office somewhere or other, I explained- she looked- hesitated then went off to check something, then had to phone head office, then had to phone Edinburgh. Guess what, no post-dated form anywhere, account not closed, nothing had been done, the form must have been lost in the post! Would I pop into town again, to sign forms? I had to count to 10 before saying, no – no way – I have mobility issues and I had no intention of struggling into town yet again, to sort out something that wasn’t my fault. They agreed to accept my phone request, combined with the confirmation from the branch, so will arrange it for me, probably around another 2 weeks.

I wander what would have happened if 1) I had no other funds available to use initially when the card was rejected, and 2) If I was desperate for that cash, if I was relying on it? Tellingly I received no apology about anything in the branch.

Today I went to the optician so they could adjust my specs, they were loose and moving around my face, not good for my eyes I thought, as the lens is set up (they are variofocals)  in line with my eyes, and if the position of the frame is wrong I won’t be seeing properly! They came up with so many excuses that I nearly lost my temper, eventually the optician checked my eyes and confirmed the prescription was ok, but the specs were too wide at the bridge which made them fall down my nose and dig into my cheeks and meant that my eyes were not aligned properly with the  lens. So after an hour or so in there, I chose new frames. I tried to explain that I thought the trained  people who assist you with selecting your new frames actually did more than simply fill in the form, abut apparently not, they will sell you anything! I told them about a previous optician, where I had been refused frames, as they were not right for me would be uncomfortable! and the bridge was too wide!! I was told they were trained to fit specs and make sure the customer was advised and guided to make sure they were happy with their new specs. He said they would take that on board, then the girl who came to help me pick the new frames, just stood saying which she like and which she didn't, I asked her a couple of times re shape, fit, bridge.

Hot tired and needing to get home and the feet up after all that,  but no, mum needed chocolate biscuits, so off we set back into the shopping centre. Back yet again for a bus, not long to wait, this was good. I have to change buses and have my usual route planned out so I have as short a distance as possible to walk. The stop I get off at is after a particularly twisty and bumpy bit of road, so I got my bags on seats, gathered my stick, pressed the buzzer, checked the sign was lit up, and held on for dear life, as I bent to pick up my bags and turned round – what did I see?? My bus stop as we sailed past it!! So I had to get off at the next stop, which meant a wee walk, but with the way I was feeling it could just as well have been a mile.OH met me at the bus top at home to take all the bags, I hobbled across the road. Feet swollen, hands swollen, head thumping and thinking if one more person annoys me today………. So into nightie, make up off, coffee drunk, feeling a little more human, but thank God I am staying in tomorrow!!!


  1. I'm with you on the banks. Once they have your money in their system, you'd better have a good reason and forms in triplicate if you want it back! I won't deal with any of the large banks now. Small is good. I'd be intrigued to know which one was so spectacularly unhelpful to you....

  2. Never mind one of those days, sounds like one of those months all rolled into one! The service (or total lack of) is appalling these days and you are treated as if you are a nuisance if you dare to ask anything. I often wonder how staff can claim to work for a company when their knowledge of what that company does is so limited. I think we need to learn in this country how to complain and complain loudly when things are wrong, maybe then service in all areas would improve.

  3. I dont now how to contact face;- Nationwide!

  4. Wonderful blog post of modern life. If I did my job as badly as some people do theirs I would have no business left. Bad service drives me wild. These places forget we have a choice and can take our business elsewhere. Customer is king !! This is a wonderful blog about frustrating times. X x