Widower refused refund after wife dies

An army veteran from Hampshire was refused a refund when he had to cancel his anniversary celebration at a hotel when his wife died.

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FULL REPORT: Hotel's change of heart over refund

A hotel in Hampshire, that refused to refund a widower for his 50th wedding anniversary party when his wife died, has now agreed to give him his money back. 78-year-old Eric Clifton from Swanmore had to cancel the event after his wife Joyce died from cancer 2 months before.

The Lysses House Hotel in Fareham initially refused to refund the £700 he had already paid - but, as Sarah Cooper reports, they've now had a change of heart.

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Hotel owner says he will agree deal with widower

The owner of a hotel that refused to refund an Army veteran for an anniversary party after his wife died has told ITV News they will "come to some sort of agreement" with him or that he "will make a charitable donation."

The entrance to Lysses House Hotel in Hampshire. Credit: Lysses House / Facebook

Colin Mercer said his staff had not been made aware of the reasons behind the cancellation of the July event and only became aware of the circumstances after a bad review on a hotel review website.

He said: "This happened in June for an event in July, five months later there was a bad review on TripAdvisor. In all those months no one approached us."

Mr Mercer added: "I do feel I haven't been able to put our points across. I'm upset about it, I wouldn't want this to happen to anybody.

"If Mr Clifton wants to contact us we can come to some sort of agreement, if he doesn't we will make some charitable donation."

Mr Clifton booked the hotel for his 50th wedding anniversary but eight weeks before the party his wife, Joyce, died from cancer.

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Hotel advises customers to insure against death

Nicola Stafford, front-of-house manager at Lysses House Hotel, said that Mr Clifton had read and signed the hotel's terms and conditions when he had booked the venue and they were unable to refund the deposit as they had been unable to re-let the function room.

She said:

It's unfortunate and we understand he is upset and angry but we cannot give him preferential treatment.

Our terms and conditions are standard across the industry and we would advise anybody booking a function to take out insurance for any such eventuality very much as if you had booked a holiday.

Widower criticises 'hard-hearted' hotel over refund

A Hampshire Army veteran, who was refused a refund for an anniversary party at a hotel after his wife died from cancer, said the owner was "hard-hearted."

Eric Clifton told ITV Meridian that he was "so cross" when he discovered that he would not be getting a refund from the hotel.

The 78-year-old from Swanmore paid the initial deposit of £160 with a further payment of £535 to the Lysses House Hotel in Fareham.

However, eight weeks before the event, Mrs Clifton, 72, died from cancer and Eric was forced to cancel the party.

Hampshire widower refused refund after wife dies

A Hampshire Army veteran was refused a refund for an anniversary party at a hotel when his wife passed away two months before the event.

Eric Clifton from Swanmore booked the party for his 50th wedding anniversary and said the venue refused to return the £700 upfront payment fee when his wife died.

The 78-year-old paid the initial deposit of £160 with a further payment of £535 to the Lysses House Hotel in Fareham for the event.

However, eight weeks before the event, Mrs Clifton, 72, died from cancer and Eric was forced to cancel the party.

The former warrant officer in the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers, who has two children and five grandchildren, said: "I feel rather bitter about it. I am pretty cross. We had been there several times before - I won't be going back there again."

It's unfortunate and we understand he is upset and angry but we cannot give him preferential treatment. Our terms and conditions are standard across the industry and we would advise anybody booking a function to take out insurance for any such eventuality very much as if you had booked a holiday."

– Nicola Stafford, front-of-house manager at Lysses House Hotel

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