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Caterer and Hotelkeeper – 6675

Pesty letter withdrawn by Rentokil

PEST-control firm Rentokil has withdrawn a controversial circular sent last week to more than 250 of its Strathclyde customers, describing it as “a mistake”.

The move follows a complaint by Argyll hotelier Bob Chicken that customers could end up paying extra for an unwanted service.

The letter told customers they would be invoiced for a new rapid-response service unless they informed the company in writing that they did not wish to go ahead.

Mr Chicken, proprietor of Columba Hotel in Tarbert, said hoteliers could pay around £5 extra on their quarterly invoices if they had not noticed the extra paragraph.

Rentokil said the letter had not been approved by the Scottish area manager in Edinburgh before it was sent. Customers will be sent a retraction and only billed if they have asked for the service.

There is no legal obligation to pay for anything offered in this way, according to a spokesperson at the British Hospitality Association.

B&Bs offerbargains

COMPETITION among bed and breakfast owners has kept prices low during the recession, according to the latest edition of a Consumers’ Association guide published today.

At the same time, standards have also risen, with many rooms now including hotel-style facilities such as televisions, private bathrooms and telephones.

Compilers of the Good Bed and Breakfast Guide inspected 1,000 establishments and found prices were similar to those in the guide’s 1988 first edition.

The best bargains were said to be in rural Scotland and Wales, while Bath, the Cotswolds and Edinburgh were nearing London prices.

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