Sidmouth pensioner receives apology after £7,500 water bill
- Credit: Archant
A Sidmouth pensioner has been left distressed and amused after being hit with a water bill of ‘Titanic’ proportions, coming to nearly £7,500.
Dr Louis Herzberg was shocked to see that, in the three weeks between April 5 and April 29 for his former house in Farway, he was being charged £7,448 by South West Water.
He contacted The Herald this week after receiving a final reminder letter threatening court action if the amount was not paid within 14 days.
South West Water has apologised for the inconvenience after a number of reminder letters were sent to the 81-year-old's former address, demanding payment for the eye-watering figure.
Dr Herzberg has been between the Farway address and his wife's property in Sidmouth for the last 20 months while completing the sale of the house.
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The retired neurologist made several calls to the water company to address the issue and was told several times it 'would all be dealt with'.
He said: "It has been distressing, no question about it. I phoned lots of times, and there was a guy who said 'that's a lot of water, you would have to have used a lot'. And I said 'enough to sail the Titanic?'
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"There must have been five occasions I was told it would be dealt with.
"But the letters kept coming, and then I got a bill with a large amount on it. I have felt the stress - this was an unnecessary aggravation.
"I was living at that address over the last few months. I didn't use the bath or the shower.
"I maybe put the washing machine on once in six weeks and the dishwasher once in a while to make sure things were running.
"I was happy to pay the nominal charge of what little water I had used over the last few months.
"I have been amused by this bill. They have all been very nice - it will be dealt with."
A spokesman for the water company said: "South West Water has contacted Dr Herzberg, apologised for any inconvenience caused and have reached a resolution.
"The cause of this high bill was a complex leakage issue involving multiple parties, but it has now been resolved, and Dr Herzberg will not be charged for this."