Time to award my prestigious Part of The Week Award. This week's award goes to Havant Borough Council, who sent bailiffs into the Courtyard Restaurant in Havant Hampshire because the owner had a debt of 90p.
Bailiffs ordered the chef to stop cooking, and customers waiting for tables were sent away.
The bailiffs then went on to threaten to seize property and equipment unless Miss Davis, the owner, paid the 90p she owed the local council plus £183.10 to cover their costs.
Erm...does this not seem a tad excessive?
Why does Nanny use such extreme actions for such trivial matters?
Why does Nanny not employ equally vigorous methods for somewhat more serious issues eg drug dealing, assaults, religious extremism etc?
Needless to say, Miss Davis, was a tad pissed off about the whole affair.
"It's an extraordinarily heavy-handed action for 90p.
I'm angry about it because this sort of thing
can really hurt the reputation of a restaurant."
Miss Davis had owed £725.90 to Havant Borough Council in business rates.
After the council gave her seven days to pay up before calling in its debt agency, Equita, she paid £725 by cheque but left off the 90p.
The council informed Equita of the outstanding debt and the firm sent round two bailiffs to get the cash back.
Hilary Hopgood, the revenues client manager at the council, said:
"There was a breakdown of communication.
Nevertheless, what happened is regrettable."
Equita says it will refund Miss Davis the £183.10 she paid in bailiff costs, but not the 90p.
Havant Borough Council, well deserving of Prats of The Week!