This is the letter I wrote to BT after they cut off my broadband and accused me of cancelling it.

Gareth Watcham
North East Lincolnshire


Dear Sir/Madam
I am writing to relay my utter disgust in your service; we have had your BT total Broadband service installed at our home for a few months compromising of your phone and broadband package. We recently decided to change our phone provider to Talk Talk and remain with yourselves for our broadband, which until now has never been a problem. We contacted Talk Talk and yourselves to make sure this arrangement was ok which Talk Talk agreed and confirmed they were to only providing our phone and not our internet. We contacted BT around mid September to also make sure we could keep just our broadband which we were told by your staff would be fine and we would be billed accordingly every three months. To our surprise approximately 10 days later on the 1st October 2007 our broadband connection was disconnected, which we put down to service problems.
This was soon corrected when I contacted your customer care centre at approximately 7:30pm GMT. (+1). after patiently waiting in a queue for around 20 minutes I spoke to a gentlemen by the name of Jay Shanmugam, who explained in broken English that our service had been disconnected as our request which tried patiently to explain was not the case. We were told that we would have to contact the sales team and re-order our service. Although we found this a great inconvenience we pursued this route thinking it would be the quickest way of getting our broadband reconnected.

We contacted the sales team and spoke to one of your staff named Vicky at about 7:55pm GMT.(+1) who informed us of the same information as Jay, after which Vicky told us a phrase which we would come to know quite well over the course of the evening “I am not the right person for this enquiry, please let me pass you on to someone that can help.” After yet another exhausting 35 minute wait on hold we finally spoke to a gentlemen by the name of Sarfaraz at around 8:35pm GMT.(+1). who told us yet again that we had cancelled our service previously and that we would need to speak to someone else who would be able to re-connect our broadband.

After yet another tantalizing wait on hold listening to a pre-automated women telling us “thank you for holding we are very busy at the minute your call is held in a queue we apologise for the delay” repeatedly for what seemed like and eternity we then spoke Mustaff who repeated, what I think should be your new advertising slogan “ I am not the right person for this enquiry, please let me pass you on to someone that can help.” And was then put on hold again!. This process carried on for many hours (pleural) all the while we remained calm. Then we spoke to a chap called Alan who also repeated your new slogan “I am not the right person for this enquiry, please let me pass you on to someone that can help.” And again we were passed to John, obviously after another time-consuming stint on hold, John then told me again the information I already knew and this information was definitely not leading to any kind of solution. We explained our frustrations calmly to John and demanded to speak to management.

After 59 minutes on hold we spoke to Waqar who obviously must’ve been busy, as after spelling his name, promptly hung up the telephone. We meditated for a short while in order to calm our ever raging tempers before starting the everlasting struggle that is to get answers from your customer helpline, if I were any older than 70 I’d probably have been dead by this point, but I digress. Our hopes were low but the ever encouraging pre-automated women robot shined light on our situation in the promise that our calls would one again be answered shortly.

Beth promptly answered; by promptly I mean as quickly as a world wide Communication Company can possibly answer, after all it’s hard to find a decent telephone service provider, right?! We thought we’d try management again after all management had only failed us once by this point everyone deserves a second chance, Beth kindly put us on hold to management. Eagerly as we could be by this point we spoke to Alison who pleasantly told us that because Talk Talk could have taken over our all of our communications and may have requested the disconnection, which we assured her was not the case as we had spoken to Talk Talk and were told that no where in our package was the broadband included and that we would remain with yourselves. With that point put straight Alison, bless her cotton socks offered to transfer us to yet someone else that could help, she worded it different but I’m sure she was just trying sugar coat your new slogan. Listening to Alison in the background explain to another colleague our situation she kindly recommended we should not be put on hold through fear of potentially making us suicidal.

After being on hold we spoke to Libby who’s voice that gave me the impression she didn’t want to be on the late shift, Libby told us that our service had a stop order placed by ourselves 10 days previous, which unless in the past few weeks I have manifested some sort of split personality, did not happen “Stop looking at me!!, Why are they looking at me!! Don’t do that!!” . Libby said we could not be reconnected until our next bill arrived and was paid so after again explaining to Libby, calmly, more than once that this seemed somewhat unfair as we had, had no intention to cancel our broadband service in the first place and this was a fault from your side, Libby must have decided it was fag break time and promptly hung up the phone without reason. We understand everyone needs a break but maybe this was not appropriate timing. As management had only failed to help us twice we decided to ring back again and start again that uphill struggle to the top of Mount Everest AKA” BT customer services”.

We spoke to Liam, by this point we felt slightly defeated and decided the best thing to do was to leave a message on our account so we asked polity if Liam would put a note on our account. We told Liam that because of our total disappointment and or unfair disconnection and lack of interest from any of your staff we would like you to note that we are going to refuse to pay any outstanding balance to yourselves due to the much repeated fact that we have not at any point have we requested any disconnection and will therefore not pay anything until we get proof by means of audio cd or similar of either my partner or myself requesting said cancellation, and that we will seeking trading standards and legal advice.

This may seem harsh but you wouldn’t pay for an Indian takeaway that didn’t arrive because they accused you of ringing back and cancelling the takeaway even though you was really hungry and couldn’t wait for it to arrive. Poor Liam couldn’t handle the pressure and beat me in saying “I am not the right person for this enquiry, please let me pass you on to someone that can help.” After cooking myself and my partner dinner (all whilst on hold) we spoke to Kishaw who unfortunately had not the training to deal with this situation told us that “I am not the right person for this enquiry, please let me pass you on to someone that can help.” If you had a pound every time they said that you wouldn’t have to ‘try’ sell any communication packages eh! This statement was all I could stand and meditation had failed me. I told Kishaw in a slightly less mannered tone that we, to put it shortly give up, but Kishaw had an idea! he was going to put us through to someone that could help, if only someone else had that initiative earlier! Clever chap, I think you should consider him for promotion.

We meditated once more in during the everlasting wait on hold, and although I am now quite fond of pre-automated robot women we decided after another 40 minute wait to call it a night, after all it was now 9.58pm GMT.(+1).

I would just like to summarise the various contact to yourselves that I have experienced this evening not only to highlight the pinball service that you claim is world class, but also I feel over the last few hours of my life, I have become part of your team or ‘big family’ as most corporate companies like to call themselves and will maybe one day get chance to share this evening exciting events with future grandchildren.

Staff I have come to know this evening;

1) Jay Shanmugam,
2) Vicky,
3) Sarfaraz ,
4) Mustaff,
5) Alan,
6) John,
7) Waqar,
8) Beth,
9) Alison
10) Libby
11) Liam
12) Kishaw

On another unrelated note I am currently seeking work and wonder if there are any available vacancies in your department.

I have a lot of experience in customer relations, about 3 hours, which is probably around the same amount of experience as many of your current staff, the only difference is a did it in my own valuable time. I have also been practising in the mirror the standard telephone operating procedure and have learnt to say;

“I am not the right person for this enquiry, please let me pass you on to someone that can help.”

I have worked in various offices and do know how to forward calls. I also have an extra advantage that many of your staff do not have in that I was born in the same country as most of your target customers and can speak fluent English. If you would like any referees please see list above, but not Libby, especially if she’s on the night shift.

Thank you for taking the time to read this letter I hope you will be in touch shortly.

Yours sincerely

Gareth Watcham

P.S Sorry I had to post rather than Email but there is currently a problem with my ISP.