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.