A farmer was left “absolutely effing fuming” after being sent an £80k electricity bill.
Gareth Wyn Jones, a farmer from North Wales, was given an electricity bill for £80,099.
After investigating the matter, he found that an IT error by British Gas caused them to issue a bill 22 times higher than it should have been.
The controversy began on October 23 when he received a “mountain” of paperwork at his Llanfairfechan farm and was told to pay the massive sum by October 27.
In a video he recorded in his kitchen, he said: “I’m gonna get on my soapbox because I am absolutely effing fuming. I’m not going to swear because I think it’s past that point.”
Showing the dozens of pages he was sent by British Gas, he said: “This is what they sent us in the post – a whole tree.”
Later, Mr Jones said he was thankful that his 87-year-old father, a partner in his business, hadn’t opened it.
He said: “He’s just had a knee operation and recently returned home from hospital. I dread to think how some vulnerable people might have reacted.
“An £80,000 bill! If someone was depressed or had had a bad day, it might have tipped them over the edge.”
Determined to resolve the matter, Mr Jones made several phone calls to British Gas. On one occasion he was on the phone for more than 90 minutes.
He discovered that old, fully paid-up contracts dating back to 2020 had been included in the bill.
North Wales Live reported that, as a result, instead of needing to pay £80,000, Mr Jones only actually had to pay £3,600.
He said: “By the time I got hold of the complaints department, I was fuming, virtually frothing at the mouth.
“In all my life I don’t think I’ve ever been so angry.
“Honest to God, it was unbelievable, they couldn’t even find our account because, as a farm, we don’t have a house number.”
Mr Jones added: “We’ve always paid by direct debit yet suddenly this huge bill comes through the post with no explanation and a demand for immediate payment.
“We need to do something to ensure these mistakes don’t happen again – or, if they do, these companies are liable to compensation.”
In a statement, a spokesperson for British Gas said: “We are really sorry. The high bill Mr Jones received was incorrect and generated in error.
“We have apologised and confirmed that his actual account balance is £3,672.37.”