East Lancs shopkeeper’s shock at £19,000 gas bill

Burnley and Pendle Citizen: Hamid Ahmed and Nahida Paveen with the ‘devastating’ bill Hamid Ahmed and Nahida Paveen with the ‘devastating’ bill

A GREAT Harwood shopkeeper has spoken of her shock after opening a £19,000 gas bill.

Nahida Paveen, who owns WST News in Queen Street with her family, said the quarterly bill was ‘devastating’ to read.

The 44-year-old mother-of-three said: “I nearly fell of my chair.

“Afterwards I found it funny but at first I was devastated. I told my husband and he said, ‘what?’ “If somebody was not able to speak English, or get on the phone to sort it out, do you think they would survive having to look at a bill like that?”

Mrs Paveen lives above the shop with husband Hamid Ahmed, 45, with whom she has three children — Waleed Mir, 20, Sadia, 17, and Tauheed, 13.

Burnley and Pendle Citizen:

She said she contacted her supplier of two years, British Gas, after receiving the bill last Wednesday. “They said it was estimated but the previous bill was based on an actual reading,” she said.

“I asked them if they actually read the bills and how I was estimated to have used more than £19,000 in three months.

“They just kept saying it was estimated but I said that does not explain it.” Mrs Paveen supplied British Gas, a subsidiary company of Centrica, with an up-to-date reading but has still had to cancel her direct debit to stop the money from leaving her account later this month.

She said: “They said to wait seven days for a revised bill but they said the direct debit will go out, so I’m cancelling it.

“I have not got that sort of money in my account.”

British Gas spokeswoman Leigh Franks said the company had introduced a new billing system which had resulted in ‘some incorrect bills being issued’.

An investigation was also launched to track down accounts that were affected.

She said: “I am very sorry that we sent a large bill in error to Mrs Paveen. This was due to an error in our computer system which has now been rectified.

“We have apologised to Mrs Paveen today and assured her that a correct bill will be issued.”

Comments (9)

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12:35pm Tue 8 Jul 14

latinagirl says...

It is terrible that she got that shock, but the comment about people not being able to speak English and how it would affect them to receive the bill is a bit silly. I believe that if you can't speak English , you shouldn't live in England. I have no pity for people who move to this country and don't even try to learn the language. And no, I am not being racist, I am not even English myself.
It is terrible that she got that shock, but the comment about people not being able to speak English and how it would affect them to receive the bill is a bit silly. I believe that if you can't speak English , you shouldn't live in England. I have no pity for people who move to this country and don't even try to learn the language. And no, I am not being racist, I am not even English myself. latinagirl
  • Score: 68

1:54pm Tue 8 Jul 14

BuckoTheMoose says...

Normally I would be saying that this is a simple mistake, easily solved by a phone call, but BGs inability to stop the direct debit being taken is a bit silly, if it's true.

And:

""If somebody was not able to speak English to sort it out""

Whose fault would that be then? Not British Gas.
Normally I would be saying that this is a simple mistake, easily solved by a phone call, but BGs inability to stop the direct debit being taken is a bit silly, if it's true. And: ""If somebody was not able to speak English [...] to sort it out"" Whose fault would that be then? Not British Gas. BuckoTheMoose
  • Score: 24

2:54pm Tue 8 Jul 14

ikap22 says...

latinagirl wrote:
It is terrible that she got that shock, but the comment about people not being able to speak English and how it would affect them to receive the bill is a bit silly. I believe that if you can't speak English , you shouldn't live in England. I have no pity for people who move to this country and don't even try to learn the language. And no, I am not being racist, I am not even English myself.
100% agreed.
[quote][p][bold]latinagirl[/bold] wrote: It is terrible that she got that shock, but the comment about people not being able to speak English and how it would affect them to receive the bill is a bit silly. I believe that if you can't speak English , you shouldn't live in England. I have no pity for people who move to this country and don't even try to learn the language. And no, I am not being racist, I am not even English myself.[/p][/quote]100% agreed. ikap22
  • Score: 25

4:44pm Tue 8 Jul 14

bow1974 says...

latinagirl wrote:
It is terrible that she got that shock, but the comment about people not being able to speak English and how it would affect them to receive the bill is a bit silly. I believe that if you can't speak English , you shouldn't live in England. I have no pity for people who move to this country and don't even try to learn the language. And no, I am not being racist, I am not even English myself.
Well said and why go to the LET this not news
[quote][p][bold]latinagirl[/bold] wrote: It is terrible that she got that shock, but the comment about people not being able to speak English and how it would affect them to receive the bill is a bit silly. I believe that if you can't speak English , you shouldn't live in England. I have no pity for people who move to this country and don't even try to learn the language. And no, I am not being racist, I am not even English myself.[/p][/quote]Well said and why go to the LET this not news bow1974
  • Score: 12

5:14pm Tue 8 Jul 14

zabby says...

This is a result of privatisation ,remember the where's Sid adverts and lots of people bought shares thinking they would make a killing,we'll think again this company along with others what were privatised are ripping everyone off and treating us all with contempt
This is a result of privatisation ,remember the where's Sid adverts and lots of people bought shares thinking they would make a killing,we'll think again this company along with others what were privatised are ripping everyone off and treating us all with contempt zabby
  • Score: 5

11:15pm Tue 8 Jul 14

adamdesk says...

IDIOTS decided to go to the papers so they don't have to pay the bill

simple mistake what was the need or papers
IDIOTS decided to go to the papers so they don't have to pay the bill simple mistake what was the need or papers adamdesk
  • Score: -9

2:20am Wed 9 Jul 14

englishmuslim says...

latinagirl wrote:
It is terrible that she got that shock, but the comment about people not being able to speak English and how it would affect them to receive the bill is a bit silly. I believe that if you can't speak English , you shouldn't live in England. I have no pity for people who move to this country and don't even try to learn the language. And no, I am not being racist, I am not even English myself.
Totally agree with you
[quote][p][bold]latinagirl[/bold] wrote: It is terrible that she got that shock, but the comment about people not being able to speak English and how it would affect them to receive the bill is a bit silly. I believe that if you can't speak English , you shouldn't live in England. I have no pity for people who move to this country and don't even try to learn the language. And no, I am not being racist, I am not even English myself.[/p][/quote]Totally agree with you englishmuslim
  • Score: 4

2:22am Wed 9 Jul 14

englishmuslim says...

adamdesk wrote:
IDIOTS decided to go to the papers so they don't have to pay the bill

simple mistake what was the need or papers
Simple mistake? How is a £19k bill a simple mistake. You seem like the simple one here pal. Just joking mate. They've gone to the press for free publicity wherby their shop gets advertised for free by the LET. Simples!
[quote][p][bold]adamdesk[/bold] wrote: IDIOTS decided to go to the papers so they don't have to pay the bill simple mistake what was the need or papers[/p][/quote]Simple mistake? How is a £19k bill a simple mistake. You seem like the simple one here pal. Just joking mate. They've gone to the press for free publicity wherby their shop gets advertised for free by the LET. Simples! englishmuslim
  • Score: 4

10:09pm Wed 9 Jul 14

ossylass53 says...

If this bill was of a signicantly lesser amount it might just have gone unnoticed.Having it publicised in the news paper will prompt people to double check there bills.Wether it was 19p or £1900 it shouldn't happen.
If this bill was of a signicantly lesser amount it might just have gone unnoticed.Having it publicised in the news paper will prompt people to double check there bills.Wether it was 19p or £1900 it shouldn't happen. ossylass53
  • Score: 1
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