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I took out a diamond membership at Virgin Active some months ago and enjoying the gym, great facilities etc. I am now struggling with a severe knee problem which I am in physiotherapy for and which has forced me to give up my job for the moment. Explaining that I have no income (which is posing bigger problems than a gym membership, and in extreme discomfort (wear and tear injury, not gym related) they refuse to cancel the membership and are being completely unreasonable given the sudden and unforseen change in my circumstances. They are recommending a freeze but I am so put off by their attitude, i.e. so what we don't care, why on earth would I want to return? Has anyone had any dealings of this kind and any advice? Thanks.

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I took out a diamond membership at Virgin Active some months ago and enjoying the gym, great facilities etc. I am now struggling with a severe knee problem which I am in physiotherapy for and which has forced me to give up my job for the moment. Explaining that I have no income (which is posing bigger problems than a gym membership, and in extreme discomfort (wear and tear injury, not gym related) they refuse to cancel the membership and are being completely unreasonable given the sudden and unforseen change in my circumstances. They are recommending a freeze but I am so put off by their attitude, i.e. so what we don't care, why on earth would I want to return? Has anyone had any dealings of this kind and any advice? Thanks.

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There must be a special school for those who want to run a gym, they all seem to be the same.

 

Your first thing is to stop any direct debit so you don't lose any precious funds while you're out of work and take things from there.

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Hi. That's already done to save immediate financial hassle. Don't know if it's worth trying to appeal to any better nature they might have. I have the sick lines and P45 and hospital appointments card but it would appear to make little difference to these people. I lost my job a few years ago and have been through similar difficulties.:(

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Hello there.

 

I used to attend a Virgin Active gym. I'm certain they have a clause within the agreement that allows you to cancel the membership on health grounds if you have evidence from a doctor that states you cannot use gym equipment anymore.

 

You may wish to SAR Virgin to get a copy of any paperwork you signed.

 

Also see if their terms and conditions are available on their website?!

 

Also contact your local Trading Standards for advice?

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Hi. That's already done to save immediate financial hassle. Don't know if it's worth trying to appeal to any better nature they might have. I have the sick lines and P45 and hospital appointments card but it would appear to make little difference to these people. I lost my job a few years ago and have been through similar difficulties.:(

 

 

Hello,

 

I'm just browsing throughout the site and came across your subject and whilst I don't wish to tread on Coniffs toes, he's been here longer than I. But I feel I should warn you that just cancelling a direct debit comes with it's own little problems, such things as the company in question may let it go for a couple of months, then check it's records and find out that as you agreed to a 12 month contract say, that they have the right to resurrect the direct debit and collect the money anyway. Yes, you read that correctly, I did say the company could 'resurrect' the direct debit you cancelled and take the money regardless.

 

You have to be careful with direct debits, and agreements. That is unless you've not signed an agreement in which case they shouldn't be able to resurrect it, but they may try regardless.

 

I would take the other guys advice, and find out about what your contract says about cancelling and then use that to get out of your contract. This is especially the case as you're dealing with a company that may let you go, then reread that contract agreement and find that they can collect the renaming 12 months for however many family members signed up to the gym. You can see such an occurrence in the following two posts:

 

http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/debt-collection-industry/128064-virgin-active-arc-please.html Obviously, I would follow this thread through, as there's lots of useful information in it.

 

or another here:

Virgin Active Complaints - Gym Membership Cancellation

 

and there's LOTS of glowing warnings here:

Virgin Active Health Clubs Review in Gyms at Review Centre

 

HTH

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Hi,

 

I had been a member of Holmes Place Gym since 2002. Virgin took over the club a few years ago.

 

- On May 27th, 2009, I asked the Virgin Staff to cancel my membership effectively from June 2009, but was refused and told that all cancellation should be made by 17th of the month.

 

- However I insisted to cancel my membership but the manager wrote on the cancellation form, the cancellation effectively date from 1st of July 2009 but I wrote beside her writing "June 2009" and I marked the form with initial instead of signed it actually and the gym manager signed the form.

 

Since then every month, I got a letter demanding payment of membership for:

in June for £ 66 (for June memebrship) plus £ 30 admin fee from virigin active

in July for £ 132 (for june and july membership) plus £ 30 admin fee from virigin active

 

Along with the letter saying that despite number of calls from Virgin Active, Virgin Active haven't received my payment. All letters from virigin active was asking me to call them to make payment over the phone but without any address for me to send back my reply via post. So I called virgin active about the letters and told them that I have asked to cancel my membership effectively from 1st of June 2009 but they said they are not aware of any request therefore the transferred the phone to my local virgin active club and the staff said over the phone that she is aware that I asked for cancellation??? I am a bit confused. I told the staff why virgin active said the called me many times when actually they never called me. Then they staff asked for my mobile number and on that day only the gym manager called and left a message on my mobile to call her back, but I didn't do that as I was so annoyed with the way they treated me.

 

In mid August 2009, I got a letter from ARC (acting on behalf of Virgin Active) demanding payment for £ 228 (For June, July and August membership plus £ 30 admin fee), so I called ARC to inform them that I have cancelled my membersip effectively from June 2009. I was asked to send them a letter and copy of cancellation form. So I did send a letter to ARC to inform tham that I cancelled my membership along with copy fo cancellation form.

 

On 21st of September 2009 I received a letter from ARC to inform me that:

 

" Dear Sir,

 

We are writing in response to your recent correspondence.

 

We have checked with our client and they have confirmed that as you have now supplied them with proof of your request to cancel, they have reduced your outstanding balance to £ 66.00 which is the subcription payment due for June. Therefore, the above balance remains outstanding and must be paid.

 

Your payment should be sent directly to this office. Please ensure your payment is made payable to ARC (Europe) Ltd and clearly write your reference number XXXXX on the reverse or this may delay it being allocated to your account. Alternatively you can telephone us to make a payment by debit or credit card.

 

If we do not received your payment within the next 10 days, this account will be passed to our solicitors for further action.

 

Your faithully

 

XXXX

ARC (Europe) Ltd.

 

----------------------------------------------------------------

 

Do I need to pay for this £ 66 they requested? As previously ARC threaten to bring the case to court when they demanded £ 228 payment which is now reduced to £ 66.

 

I am in bad shape financially at this moment due to recession, so money is very tight in fact I am in debt management program for bank loans and credit cards due to my suffering small business. Therefore I prefer not to go to court.

 

many thank in advance for your help and advice.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Cancelled my membership with Virgin Inactive and they stated I had already started another 12 month rolling contract, er NO Peeps, I cancelled within the time frame specified, how ever they seem to think I paid a months membership for one day so in effect I cancelled a month too late - idiots

PGH7447

 

 

Getting There Slowly

---------

 

Advice is given freely but is in no way meant to be taken as Gospel:-)

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  • 2 months later...

I implore you all to write to BBC’s Send your story to Watchdog and it could feature in an upcoming programme, particularly at the moment in the ‘fitness season’.

Go to http://www.bbc.co.uk/watchdog/gotastory/

Click on Subject “Sport, Leisure and Entertainment”, then sub category “Health clubs and leisure centres”.

This is what I wrote:

Virgin Active gyms partake in a very unfair practice in the membership contracts. One of their membership packages the “Diamond Membership” requires that you sign a 12 month rolling contract. Therefore if you do not cancel the membership by "the seventeenth day of the twelfth month”, then you are automatically entered into another 12 month contact. Virgin Active do not send a reminder at the end of each 12 month period. The cancellation fee is the remainder of your 12 month contact. Therefore I am in a situation where I have been a member of Virgin Active Health Club for nearly 7 years and will need to pay in excess of £700 to cancel my contract. Do watchdog feel this is fair or acceptable? I am not alone on this issue, a quick Google search brings up many forums, e.g.

http://www.complaintsboard.com/complaints/virgin-active-c158480.html

http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.html?t=603247

http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.html?t=1863703

http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/gyms-health-clubs/221603-virgin-active-membership.html

http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/gyms-health-clubs/63342-virgin-active-la-fitness.html

http://www.consumeractiongroup.co.uk/forum/gyms-health-clubs/198470-virgin-active-health-club.html

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