Tuesday, 17 January 2012

A mammoth business #gas bill has left a Post Office owner stunned

Ismail Patel, postmaster at Batley Carr Post Office and NisaLocal store, has been locked in a dispute with energy supplier British Gas since 2008. Late last year he received his first bill in four years, requesting immediate payment of £18,000.

Four months later British Gas said there had been a mistake – the actual figure he owed was more like £45,000.

Mr Patel, who has owned the post office for four years, said he was still in a state of shock over the bill.

“I’ve been making regular payments based on what I thought the supply would cost, even without the bills,” he said.

“This has caused a big problem for me, financially. I can’t pay that amount.”

Before March, the last bill Mr Patel received from British Gas was in March 2008 for £96.

In July last year he received his first alarming bill, after several requests for it to be sent out.

In an internal British Gas log, a member of staff said the £18,000 figure was ‘fictitious’. This log was later released to Mr Patel and has been seen by the Reporter.

In November Mr Patel was sent another bill, this time for £43,520.

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