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Man takes overdose after £6k bill

allroad

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#1
Mr Bargate swallowed 100 pills and left a note naming E.On as the "catalyst"

An 84-year-old war veteran tried to take his own life after a utility firm wrongly claimed he owed £6,500.
The error led to Walter Bargate, from Stockport, being left without power. He swallowed 100 pills and wrote a note naming E.On as the "catalyst".
He was found unconscious but recovered. It emerged his bills had been inflated because E.On had wrongly wired a meter.
A spokesman said E.On had corrected the fault as soon as it was made aware of it and offered "sincere apologies".
Watchdog Energywatch slammed E.On for a "catalogue of crass errors" and called for a review of how vulnerable customers are protected at a time when energy bills are soaring.
Mr Bargate - who served in Bomber Command in World War II - was found unconscious at his home in Great Moor, Stockport.
No power
In his farewell note to his children he explained how a few days earlier engineers had entered his home and installed a pre-payment meter. After two days the meter ran out of credit and his power was cut off.
Mr Bargate, who is physically impaired and lived alone, said he topped up his account but never had his supply restored.
He then called the company for advice but said he was left hanging on for more than three hours.
As he recovered in hospital, his daughter contacted E.On who told her he owed £6,500 for energy payments accrued since 2003.
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It emerged he had been unable to pay increasingly high bills - of up to £1,800 a quarter - and had hidden the debt from his family.
Following Mr Bargate's attempt to take his own life, his daughter, Sarah Hayes, contacted Energywatch and the energy supply ombudsman who launched an investigation.
The inquiry revealed the meters in his home had been incorrectly wired and he was being charged up to four times more than he should have been.
The ombudsman ruled E.On should write off the £6,500 bill and apologise to the family.
The ruling suggested that while the faulty wiring dated back to 2002 when the meters were installed, the problem could go back to 1983 when E.On took over Mr Bargate's supply.
'Horrendous impact'
Mrs Hayes said: "They behaved in the most atrocious manner from beginning to end.
"It chokes me to think how desperate he must have felt.
"He became afraid and stopped opening his letters."
Adam Scorer of Energywatch said: "E.On have a legal and moral obligation to acknowledge the horrendous impact of their actions on Mr Bargate's quality of life and to provide suitable redress."
A spokesperson for E.On said: "It is extremely important to us that any customer who is having difficulty paying their bills contact us as soon as possible so that we can help.
"Had we been made aware of the severity of this situation by Mr Bargate or his family we would have acted upon it immediately.
"We have a range of ways to help vulnerable customers to ensure debts do not arise and we would urge any customer experiencing difficulties with their account to call us."
 

jaffa

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#2
You would think that E.On would have twigged that an 84 year old man living on his own would not have bills that size. Seems they only see the £ signs.
 

pipsqueaker

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#3
You would think that E.On would have twigged that an 84 year old man living on his own would not have bills that size. Seems they only see the £ signs.
The bills are handled by computers, come out like a conveyor belt.
No-one even sees them till the computer says someone hasn't paid.
 

jaffa

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#4
The bills are handled by computers, come out like a conveyor belt.
No-one even sees them till the computer says someone hasn't paid.
True pip m8 but once he didnt pay then surely someone could have looked at why the bill was so high and then sussed it was an o.a.p.
 

wasnotwasD

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#5
That is absolutely atrocious!
Most surviving WW2 veterans must be wondering whether it was even worth the bother.:Mad2:
So sad! But this gentleman might even wish he’d succeeded.
 

meangreenie

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#7
This Energy bullshit has got to stop. All it is realisticly is a liscence to print money for themselves and they really don't care who they hurt, the country is on the border of extreme capatalism with no thought for the vulnerable.

Contacting them and asking for help as Evil.On suggested is a futile action as we all know the likelyness of help is a zero... they would have left his meter wrongly wired, as they did, for year upon year.
 

v14

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#8
That is absolutely atrocious!
Most surviving WW2 veterans must be wondering whether it was even worth the bother.:Mad2:
So sad! But this gentleman might even wish he’d succeeded.
that is atrocious .
The fact that anyone who served for Britain in WW2 and gets to pension age still has to pay for electicity or any other utility is a national disgrace.
 
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HappyH

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#9
that is atrocious .
The fact that anyone who served for Britain in WW2 and gets to pension age still has to pay for electicity or any other utility is a national disgrace.
Exactly what I was thinking.
 

jaffa

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#10
Don't be daft guys...this government aint going to give any help to someone who fought for their country and stopped us all having blue eyes, blonde hair and speaking German. They need all the money they can screw from us for to furnish their 2nd homes in London.

btw...I totally agree that anyone who has served their country in WW2 and more than likely paid tax all their working life should have their essentials paid for.
 

english

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#11
that is atrocious .
The fact that anyone who served for Britain in WW2 and gets to pension age still has to pay for electicity or any other utility is a national disgrace.
tell the queen ..
 

MFCGMFC

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#12
tell the queen ..
she just sits on her arse and watches shite like this happen and does hee fucking haw!! the monarchy is nothing but a waste of fucking time and resources now

at one point it was great they actually did things for the people but not now fucking waste of space the whole fucking lot of them

rant over, i could go on but i dont wanna get banned

Cheers
MFCGAVMFC
 

pipsqueaker

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#13
True pip m8 but once he didnt pay then surely someone could have looked at why the bill was so high and then sussed it was an o.a.p.
Point taken Jaffa

It seems these days that no-one in Corporations, Councils etc give a toss about anybody else.
 

english

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#14
at one point it was great they actually did things for the people
yes, when we were great britain, as ordained in the Bible. now we are part of the 'united kingdom', it means a lot less literally and spiritually but it is a part of the natural progression that was foretold. questions on a postcard please lol
 

arbelos

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#15
source woulda been good...video there aswell...

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/manchester/7490287.stm

do feel for the old boy as i wouldnt like it to happen to my grandparents or anyone else for that matter but he shoulda told someone

but story is so confused...they say the bills are that high because of a wrongly installed meter...yet then go on to say the meter had only been installed days earlier...and his letter is very hard to understand

but do agree with other posters...he shouldnt have had to worry about it in the first place
 
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MFCGMFC

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#16
yes, when we were great britain, as ordained in the Bible. now we are part of the 'united kingdom', it means a lot less literally and spiritually but it is a part of the natural progression that was foretold. questions on a postcard please lol
if people get their way then Scotland wont be part of the UK, buts another story for another time

i've been listening to old scottish songs tonight so i'm buzzing :proud: away tae watch braveheart now

will ye go lassie go and bonnie wee jeanie mccoll i gave her ma mithers engagement ring in a bonnie wee tartan shall

Cheers
MFCGAVMFC
 
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Munkey

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#17
There isn't much care in the community left. Surely some old persons group, his friends or family should have been keeping an eye on the old fella. No one cares about old people in this country.

I think his family should feel a little responsible for not being there to help him in running his household.
 

Satz

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#18
This society is a depressing case... makes me think i would never join the forces. And for the old, no one cares about them, when my parents get old i will do my best to look after them in return for bringing me up
 

yoinker

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#19
This society is a depressing case... up
I think you mean, "Our society". I'm sorry but we are all part of it, its all down to us. We all like to blame someone else, but we are not doing anything about it, and don't tell me your all out campaigning for war veterans, or Government transparency, because your not, your all sitting here talking about it, instead of doing it, just like me.




All the best



Yoinker
 

benny59

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#20
This society is a depressing case... makes me think i would never join the forces. And for the old, no one cares about them, when my parents get old i will do my best to look after them in return for bringing me up

never join the forces m8 {you will be sent into battle ill equipt, then forgotten about when your dead crippled or old and grey}


look after yourself and family {because this goverment wont}