Wednesday, 13 January 2010

The Bookie always wins

Here is an excellent example of why, when I was young, my Mother always advised me never to bet my money.

The house always wins.

This is the cautionary tale of hapless punter Cliff Bryant who trustingly placed an accumulator bet with British Bookmaker Ladbrokes that snow would fall on 24 towns and cities across the north of England on Christmas Day.

Well as it happened he was right, but like one or two insurance companies Ladbrokes were reluctant to pay out when they realised it would cost them £7.1 million - So they found a handy technical reason to avoid it and refused.

They were happy enough to take the bet, but when it came time to actually pay up they said they had accepted the bet by – get this ‘mistake’ and so would not be honouring the bet. Apparently it was somehow against their rules, even though they did take the bet.

Magnanimously they are willing to refund the punter back his original stake.

Curiously and it seems foolishly I had expected better of Bookmakers than politicians. I had thought they might actually honour their promises.

Now it seems to me that if they had honoured the bet it would have been a massive boost for their credibility and good publicity. Probably over a year it would have netted them what it cost and more.

As it is they now have a reputation of not honouring their bets, of welching - and who would trust someone with a bet who has so spectacularly shown they don’t always honour their bets?

So, next time you are thinking about placing a ‘fun’ bet, or any bet, especially with Ladbrokes, perhaps you would be better advised to think twice and spend your money on something you might actually get when you part with it.

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

You omit to mention that had the hapless punter "lost" on his bet because it had failed to snow on the right day in the requisite number of locations the bookie would nevertheless, having established that it was a bet of the sort they don't take, immediately have refunded the stake any way and apologised for misleading the punter and making the mistake of taking the bet in the first place. Please excuse spelling mistakes and ham fisted writing but I am having to dodge all these flying pigs ..

Phil A said...

Anonymous you may be correct that had he discovered on losing that they would never have honoured the bet he would have attempted to recover his cash, effectively not having received the product they had made a verbal contract to supply in the first place.

Not a Ladbrokes bookie by any chance are you? :-)

I do have my doubts that they would have gone out of their way to contact him and return the money they took from him without his pursuing it.

If they did not want to take the bet they should simply have refused it at the time, there is nothing wrong with that. Having made the bet, even in error - and they did - they should have honoured it.

Flying pigeons can be a hazard, the potential sanitary hazard from flying pigs beggars the imagination.

Anonymous said...

Er, Phil, I know sarcasm is the lowest form of wit - but I was, for my sins, being sarcastic - sorry if it wasn't obvious ..... I'd rate the chances of a bookie pointing out to a punter that a losing bet shouldn't have been accepted and therefore the stake was being returned any way as slightly less likely than the "offered odds" on all the horses in a race when expressed in the new style percentages adding up to 100% and not automatically giving the bookie a 5% advantage regardless. No I don't work for Labrokes, I do have some standards and besides, they are thin on the ground around here - W Hill predominates.

Anon.

Moggs Tigerpaw said...

Phil, I don't know much about betting but Wouldn't it be written contract? They must write something on those slips.

I figure if they took the bet and took his money and it got past it's sell by date and they didn't try to get out of it before then they ought to pay up.

You are right about their reputation. I know it is no loss to them, but I wouldn't trust them now.

Like the politicians ^_^

If I were to ever place a bet I would rely on the bookie knowing what we were both supposed to do and not ripping me off after.

jmb said...

Needless to say I have no idea what an accumulator bet is but I am sure there is no way he would have been refunded the money had he lost.

Since they accepted the bet and as Moggs said he must have some documentation, if they don't pay up in full they should certainly come up with a better offer than a refund.

Phil A said...

Anon, Noted :-).

Moggs, If having accepted a bet there is any legitimate time to wiggle out of it then it is before the event bet upon.

JMB, Definately.If their representative took the bet then that is a bet a contract and maybe a training issue. I expect they have some weasle words in the tinest small print somewhere that no one but a lawyer would have read.

You have a new icon on the visitors list.

Anonymous said...

the large print giveth and the small print taketh away

Phil A said...

Anon, :-)