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Overpaid gym membership for past 3 years - refund complaint

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Hello,

 

I currently have a grievance regarding overpaying my corporate membership fees at Nuffieldhealth Cheam and was wondering if someone could please help if I have a case here.

 

I've been a member of my onsite corporate Nuffield gym since 2011 which I pay £10 per month for. Wanting access to a pool, I decided to take advantage of my corporate discount at other Nuffield gyms and joined Nuffield Cheam in 2012.

 

When I joined Cheam in 2012, I took my company ID badge and was told by the salesperson that their discounted corporate rate at Nuffield Cheam would be £56 per month, which I have paid every month since.

 

Recently, I thought I'd inquire about a swim only membership as I thought £56 to basically just use their pool was excessive.

 

I spoke to the manager at Cheam who advised they don't do a swim only membership but in fact my corporate rate was actually £35 per month and he would complete a new membership form for me to sign to adjust my monthly direct debit.

 

I felt that I had grossly overpaid and emailed their complaints contact regarding a refund of the money I had overpaid over the past 3 years, I didn't hear back from them so inquired about this when I next went into Nuffield Cheam. I was provided with an email address of the MD of Nuffield Cheam and emailed my complaint.

 

I heard back from the Deputy Manager who said that they were unfortunately unable to refund any overpayments but would amend my DD to £35/month and provide me with some free guest passes.

 

As my next step, could I take this to Trading Standards (or whoever is the gym's sector ombudsman)?

 

Surely this can't be right to not get a refund for a mistake they have made and where I haven't breached my contract terms?

 

May someone who knows about this please steer me in the right direction if I have a case. My calculations show that I should be refunded around £756.

 

Apologies for the lengthy read and thanks in advance for any assistance:)

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direct debit guarantee against your bank?

 

 

£56 blimey that's daylight

even £35 is daylight too.


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Unfortunately the DD guarantee wouldn't help as they said they would take £56 and they did take £56, so no error.

 

If you can show that the corporate rate at the time you joined was only £35, but you were charged a higher amount, then you should write a formal letter of complaint requesting the difference be refunded, due to their blatant overcharging.

 

Expect to have to write another letter, this time taking a stronger tone and threatening legal action before they do anything.

 

The key for you is to get evidence that the rate at the time was less than you were quoted.

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Thanks CrappoMan but how would I find out the fee at the time I joined? I have asked my company and they are not aware of what gyms charge as their corporate fee :(

 

Should I ask Nuffield themself?

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Is the corporate fee listed on their website ? If so, look on archive.org for a copy of their website page from the relevant time.

 

Can you ask for written confirmation from the gym ? Maybe pose as a new prospective member looking for information.

 

Do you know anybody else that goes there ?

 

There are lots of ways of finding out the info.

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No their corporate fee isn't on their website, from what I gathered they have a big file with each company's corporate discount amount.

 

No one else I work with goes to Nuffield Cheam and HR and Facilities departments don't know either, this could prove tricky.

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Hi Oxide and welcome to CAG

 

I'm sorry to say I see no legal remedy for your problem, unless you can prove that you were charged more per month than you should have been.

 

They offered you a price which you accepted and paid.

 

No harm in writing to them seeking a refund for the difference between the two monthly rates, but I doubt they pay this. They may offer a goodwill gesture.

 

But, if you don't ask, you'll get nowt.

 

:-)

Edited by slick132

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Thanks slick123, I'm finding it hard to prove what I should of been paying if/when the rate changed unless I email the Deputy Manager again and ask but by then he will be wary to release this information.

 

If I accepted that their salesperson said the corporate fee was £56 at the time in good faith, does that not give me a leg to stand on for a refund of the difference when/if the rate had changed?

 

If not then fair enough but if so then I'm flabbergasted how I'm being palmed off by them

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I agree, so write to them seeking a refund on the basis that you were overcharged by £xx per month for xx months.

 

:-)


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Thanks slick123 I will write them back.

 

Can I mention Trading Standards or the gym sectors ombudsman? I don't know who their authoritive body is, does anyone please know?

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Trading Standards and The CMA are the bodies to whom you could complain but they don't intervene in individual cases - they amass complaints with a view to investigating when they see enough complaints about the same business.

 

At this stage, I would simply say you feel you were treated unfairly by them charging you significantly more than they should.

 

Leave out threats or consequences for now and keep it friendly and polite.

 

:-)


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