Rampant weeds, fleas in ice lollies and delivery mix-ups – 29 of the angriest North Staffordshire men and women of 2020


Even the meekest among us can lose their cool when pushed to the edge – especially when we’ve all endured a turbulent year.

In fact, it seems to have happened a fair bit in Stoke-on-Trent and North Staffordshire in 2020.

Like any good local news outlet, we’ve been inundated with angry people contacting us to vent their frustrations with everything from overgrown weeds to stinking manholes and bugs in their food.

Here’s our rundown of some of the angriest people in our area of 2020.

Customer Lee demands £24.99 refund after Currys PC World fails to deliver TV bracket

Lee Carroll

 

Currys customer Lee Carroll demanded a £24.99 refund – after waiting almost two months for a TV bracket to be delivered to his home.

The 36-year-old went online to order the tilted curved TV bracket and a wall bracket from electrical retailer Currys PC World on June 5.

The wall bracket was successfully delivered to his Blythe Bridge home on June 8.

But the other product still failed to arrive – and the retail giant kept his £24.99 payment.

Lee was then left with no choice but to buy a replacement bracket from Argos to put his TV on the wall.

He said: “I have no idea what is going on – I keep being fobbed off. I’m annoyed and angry – I don’t know where to turn.”

To read Lee’s full story, click here.

Angry Adam slams Aspire after returning from two weeks in Rhyl to find home flooded

Adam Walker outside his flooded Chesterton home

 

Tenant Adam Walker hit out at Aspire Housing – after returning from holiday to discover his home had flooded.

The 34-year-old got back from two weeks in Rhyl with his wife and four-year-old daughter to discover puddles of water in the landing, living room, bathroom and bedroom.

Aspire Housing said an emergency plumber attended the Tuscan Way property, in Chesterton, within 40-minutes of the family’s call.

But Adam says he then spent the next day on the phone trying to get repairs carried out and is unhappy with the service.

The family moved in with Adam’s mum in Knutton because of the damage.

To read Adam’s full story, click here.

McDonald’s apologises to Stoke-on-Trent actor who found ‘cockroach’ in McChicken sandwich

The 'cockroach' was supposedly in the McChicken sandwich
The ‘cockroach’ was supposedly in the McChicken sandwich

 

McDonald’s was forced to apologise after a man claimed to have found a cockroach in his takeaway meal. 

‘Digusted’ Ciaron Kelly turned up at the Longton outlet with two half-eaten meals after his wife apparently found the bug in her McChicken sandwich. 

He was refunded the £11.47 cost of the McChicken meal and a Chicken Legend meal.

McDonald’s then said sorry to the dad-of-one, from Meir, after ‘falling short’ of its ‘high standards’.

To read Ciaron’s full story, click here.

Great-gran Christine, 77, forced to cut down 5ft weeds growing over her fence because council won’t do it

Grandmother Christine Mountford has been forced to cut five-foot weeds that are growing into her garden from council-owned land next to her Smallthorne house
Grandmother Christine Mountford has been forced to cut five-foot weeds that are growing into her garden from council-owned land next to her Smallthorne house

 

Great-grandmother Christine Mountford was forced to cut 5ft weeds that  were growing into her garden from council-owned land next to her house.

The 77-year-old is a carer for her husband who was left in a wheelchair after suffering a stroke.

But Christine, who is less than 5ft tall, had  to cut down the weeds and nettles growing over her fence from the overgrown field after the council have failed to cut it for a year.

She called on Stoke-on-Trent City Council to cut the ‘eyesore’ land in Smallthorne.

For the full story, click here.

Stoke-on-Trent council house tenant: ‘I shared my home with rats for 11 hellish years… now they’ve finally gone’

Disabled Sarah Aston wants the council to stop her rat problem before they get any braver

 

A disabled woman who claimed she shared her council home with rats for 11 ‘horrific’ years feared they could come back as rodents plagued Stoke-on-Trent during lockdown.

Sarah Aston told how her life was a ‘living hell’ with vermin nibbling through her food, scuttling across her kitchen worktop and scratching in the walls.

The infestation became so bad urine even dripped through the lounge ceiling of her house in Heron Cross.

The 45-year-old could  finally relax after cracks in her drains were finally patched up shortly before lockdown putting an end to more than a decade of misery.

For more on this story, click here.

Ex-undertaker slams Argos after being ‘accused of lying’ in row over missing TV

Argos is creating 130 jobs in Staffordshire
Argos has now issued an apology

 

A family slammed Argos after the retail giant failed to deliver a new TV – and then claimed it had been received.

Retired funeral director Phillip Horsley ordered the £150 24-inch TV online from Argos during the coronavirus lockdown while his wife and daughter were in hospital.

The 66-year-old received an email to say it would be delivered to his Chesterton home later that day – but it never arrived.

And when he contacted customer services the following day, he was told the delivery had been completed and there was nothing they could do.

Despite Phillip and his daughter Emma making numerous phone calls to the firm, they were unable to get the matter resolved, prompting Emma to write a letter to the Argos chief executive.

The firm went on to  apologise and issued a refund for the TV – after StokeonTrentLive approached them on the Horsleys’ behalf.

To read the full story, click here.

‘Their customer service stinks!’ – Argos issues apology after mum-of-four left without a bed for five nights

Debra Austin
Debra Austin

 

A disabled woman was left without a bed for five nights after a part was missing from her delivery.

Debra Austin bought a king-sized bed and a mattress for £900 from Argos, with the order being delivered on January 16.

The 46-year-old, who suffers with fibromyalgia and osteoarthritis, had spent weeks choosing the perfect bed with the right height to aid her pain.

But when Debra came to put up her bed, with the help of her partner, they discovered there was a part missing.

And they had already taken her old bed to the skip.

The mum-of-four, from Tittensor, demanded an apology from Argos after they suggested she slept on a mattress or blow up bed.

To read Debra’s full story, click here.

Tenant withholds £300 rent in row over Aspire house riddled with mould

Inside Kelly Copestake’s ‘mouldy’ home

 

Tenant Kelly Copestake withheld hundreds of pounds in rent – after complaining her house is riddled with damp.

The 36-year-old said she had problems with mould and damp ever since moving into the Aspire property on Clumber Avenue, in Clayton two years ago.

The mother-of-three was currently ‘signed off’ from her job as a community support worker due to the stress of the situation.

Social landlord Aspire Housing ended up apologising and agreed to install a new kitchen at the property.

To read Kelly’s full story, click here.

Aspire tenant wins three-year fight for 60ft tree to be felled after falling branch dents car

Kevin Johnson and the tree in his front garden

 

Tenant Kevin Johnson  won his three-year fight for a 60ft tree to be felled in his front garden – after a ‘big branch’ dented his car.

The 55-year-old – who lives with his mum Vera – feared the eucalyptus could even fall onto the house or injure someone.

He tried to get Aspire Housing to fell the tree for three years – without success.

But Aspire finally carried out the work at Moorland Road, in Mow Cop, after StokeonTrentLive intervenued.

To read Kevin’s full story, click here.

Stokie mum bins £23 takeaway over what she says delivery driver told her

The binned takeaway

 

A mum told how she binned a £23 takeaway because she wrongly believed the delivery driver should have been self isolating after returning from a holiday.

The 41-year-old said the driver for Norton China told her he’d just come back from a break in Greece.

Panicked that the driver should have been self-isolating, she says she then threw the chicken fried rice, chips and fillet Cantonese beef in the bin without touching it.

The woman from Norton Heights  then rang Staffordshire Police.

The force has since confirmed the driver had been to Greece, but to an area that was not one from which people had to isolate on their return.

To read the full story, click here.

Benefit claimant, 21, fears bailiffs after being slapped with ‘ridiculous’ £400 council fly-tipping fine

The 21-year-old has now been ordered to pay £400 for fly tipping
The 21-year-old has now been ordered to pay £400 for fly tipping

 

Benefit claimant Talitha Beales faced possible court action after being slapped with a ‘ridiculous’ £400 fly-tipping fine.

Stoke-on-Trent City Council imposed the penalty after accusing the 21-year-old of dumping a chair and an empty cardboard box in an alleyway near her Stoke home.

But Talitha said she had never seen the chair before – and she had last placed the box on top of her wheelie bin outside her Lovatt Street home.

Her furious mum – Angela Hartley – called on the council to reverse its decision and revoke the fine.

To read the full story, click here.

Angry mum slams Asda after claiming there was a ‘flea’ frozen in own-brand ice lolly

The 'flea' is frozen in the ice lolly
The ‘flea’ is frozen in the ice lolly

 

Mum Nikky Simpson lodged an official complaint with supermarket giant Asda – after claiming she found an insect frozen inside one of its own-brand ice lollies.

The 49-year-old, from Chesterton, had ordered the £1 box of six own-brand ‘orange juice lollies’ as part of her online shop which arrived last Saturday.

But when her 16-year-old daughter opened the box she says the insect – which she says looks like a ‘flea’ – was frozen within the lolly.

Asda confirmed it was aware of the complaint.

For the full story, click here.

Single mum’s fury as staff make her young children wait outside North Staffordshire shop due to coronavirus two-customers-at-a-time rule

Laura Holland with daughters Ellie, Mia and Sarah
Laura Holland with daughters Ellie, Mia and Sarah

 

A single mum-of-three was left furious after her children were denied entry to a pet shop because of Covid-19 restrictions.

Laura Holland and her three young daughters had headed to Newcastle Pet Supplies on August 5 to pick up items for their 12-week-old poodle Jenny.

But on arrival at the High Street store, the family were told only two customers were allowed into the shop at any one time.

This meant single mum Laura had to leave her two eldest children – nine-year-old Ellie and Mia, aged eight – outside by the door while she went in with her youngest Sarah, aged four.

The 34-year-old felt she and her girls were treated unfairly as there were no other customers in the shop at the time.

Newcastle Pet Supplies later apologised to Laura and the family for the incident and said the pandemic had put staff under immense pressure.

To read Laura’s full story, click here.

Council tenant demands action after living with stinking ant-infested manhole for seven months

The stinking manhole was ant infested

 

A specialist company had to be brought in after a council house tenant complained about an ant-infested manhole outside her property.

Louise Hargreaves called in Stoke-on-Trent City Council after being plagued by the issue since moving into her Newstead home .

It was linked to the toilet being repeatedly blocked at the Wimborne Avenue property.

It was hoped that the problem had been solved after the council dug underground to repair a faulty pipe.

The 34-year-old had feared for her children’s health and safety.

To read the full story, click here.

Council tenant gets new kitchen after living with damp and mould for 15 months

Susan Dowdall inside her Longton home

 

Council tenant Susan Dowdall was finally living in comfort after suffering with ‘damp’ and ‘mould’ problems in her one-bedroom bungalow for 15 months.

The grandmother-of-14 claimed the condition of her Kirkup Walk home, in Longton, has affected her health.

She had been diagnosed with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and persistent perceptual-postural dizziness (PPPD) since moving into the property almost four years ago.

She said the damp and mould ate away at her kitchen, hallway, living room and shower room from October 2018.

Stoke-on-Trent City Council finally sorted out the problem and even fitted a new kitchen for Susan.

To read the full story, click here.

‘Sewage is running towards our houses…’ – Frustrated families want this stinking sinkhole filled in (and it’s six-foot deep)

Gill and Pete Johnson next to the sinkhole on West Street, Newcastle

 

A stinking sinkhole leaking sewage across people’s homes and into a park was finally filled in – six months after residents reported the problem.

Severn Trent Water carried out the works on the six-foot deep sinkhole in Mount Pleasant, Newcastle.

And a slightly smaller one in nearby West Street was repaired by Staffordshire County Council.

Gill and Pete Johnson live outside the West Street sinkhole.

Gill, aged 66, said: “It’s a horrible smell and the sewage seeps all around the entrance to the park. People are walking through it with their dogs and then going home and they won’t realise what they’ve stepped in.

“It’s very unsightly and not what you want to see. What’s coming out of it is very unpleasant. The sinkholes affect parking, cause mud in the road, and lead to traffic disruption.

“I’m pleased something is happening and we just want them fixed. If I hadn’t contacted somebody then neither of them would have got fixed.”

To read the full story, click here.

‘We pay our council tax and then this happens…’ – Foxes feast on Neil’s rubbish as he falls victim to Stoke-on-Trent’s bin collection chaos

Neil Jones with his bins

 

 

Taxpayer Neil Jones  accused the council of ‘letting him down’ – as one of his bins has not been emptied for almost four weeks.

The last time the 60-year-old’s blue recycling bin was emptied was on December 12 and his next scheduled collection was Boxing Day.

But the bin had not been collected throughout the festive period.

Stoke-on-Trent City Council was forced to apologise to residents after falling behind with collections over Christmas and New Year.

Neil has lived in Tuscan House, on Spring Garden Road, Longton, for the past 13 years said there have never been any issues with his bins.

To read the full story, click here.

Dad demands eBay price gouging rule change as PS5 consoles offered for sale for £1,200

Alex Tomkinson

 

A dad-of-three hit out at eBay and PS5 sellers who are flogging the newly-released console for nearly three times its retail price – as he struggled to buy one for Christmas.

Sony’s  gaming console was released in November in a disk format – with a retail price of £450 – and a digital format at a cost of £350 and thousands have been snapped up.

But handyman Alex Tomkinson  struggled to get his hands on one for his 14-year-old son – and blamed it on ‘inflated prices’.

The 46-year-old, from Lightwood, said: “My lad has saved up all year for the PS5 and we were adding a little bit more for Christmas. But you can’t get them because when they launched people buy up as many as they can and then sell them.

“In the grand scheme of things we are very lucky people and he sees it as one of those things where he knows he is not going to get it, he’s resigned himself to it.

“I’ve used eBay for a number of years and it is the only place where people can sell these machines at inflated prices.”

For the full story, click here.

Pensioner Phil demands compensation after £700 gate ‘damaged’ when road dug up

Phil Huke with his ‘damaged’ gate

 

Pensioner Phil Huke demanded compensation – after his gate was ‘damaged’ during roadworks outside his home.

The 71-year-old said  his eight-foot wide gate was damaged by a machine digging a trench on Courtway Drive, in Sneyd Green.

It involved lifting the pavement slabs which then got underneath his driveway gate.

Phil was quoted £200 to repair the gate.

For the full story, click here.

Stoke-on-Trent mum demands £74 Waterworld refund after daughter ‘cuts shoulder’

Waterworld visitor Summer-Rose Whiston

 

A mum demanded her money back from Waterworld – after saying her daughter was injured during a visit to the water park.

Gemma Freakley splashed out £74 to take nine-year-old Summer-Rose Whiston and her friend to the tourist attraction.

But she claimed Summer-Rose cut her shoulder on a bolt as she queued to go on a slide during last month’s visit.

The issue was reported to first aid staff and Summer-Rose was given a plaster.

For the full story, click here.

Angry online shopper slams Asda after his bread rolls are swapped for cheese ciabattas

Online shopper Michael Wood  slammed Asda – after his bread rolls were substituted for ciabatta rolls.

The 48-year-old had included two packs of four Asda soft white rolls worth £2 on his original £140 shopping order.

But he was not happy to receive a 69p two-pack of cheese ciabatta rolls instead.

Asda  responded by saying Michael had the chance to reject the substitutions before his delivery and then when they arrived on the doorstep of his Tunstall home.

For the full story, click here.

Royal Stoke visitor hit with £115 parking fine after returning to car 16 minutes too late

Motorist Rebecca Elkin

 

A motorist was hit with a parking fine on a car park near Stoke-on-Trent’s main hospital.

Iceland worker Rebecca Elkin paid for one hour’s parking on the Hilton Road Pay & Display car park, in Hartshill, when her gran was rushed to hospital with a suspected stroke.

And when her gran needed extra scans Rebecca overstayed her welcome by 16 minutes and landed a £60 fine.

The fine – which dates back to March – rose to £115 after her appeal against the penalty was rejected. The Royal Stoke’s car parks were full.

For the full story, click here.

Disabled Dawn ‘devastated’ after ‘girl, 7’ goes thieving – egged on by ‘mum’

Dawn Walton

 

CCTV footage  captured the ‘appalling’ moment a young child pinched property from outside a house – after appearing to be egged on by a mum pushing a pram.

The footage – recorded from the Cobridge property – showed the woman and child walking along Cobridge Road.

The child – who had been pushing a bike – was then seen to approach the house and take a strip of elastic to the woman before returning to the property and fleeing with a mobility scooter cover.

Staffordshire Police were called in after disabled Dawn Walton returned from a dental appointment to discover the £30 cover missing.

The 61-year-old said: “I’ve got fencing at the front and what I did was weave the cover in and out of the fence to secure it. Then when I came back I thought where has my cover gone?”

For the full story, click here.

Stoke-on-Trent couple left chasing £42 refund after Asda cancels their online shop

Sarah Evans and Mark Freeman
Sarah Evans and Mark Freeman

Online shoppers Mark Freeman and Sarah Evans were left without everyday essentials and chasing a refund – after their Asda delivery was cancelled with just one hour’s notice.

The couple had placed and paid for a £42 order for their shopping which should have been delivered between 7.30pm and 8.30pm on Halloween.

But the Tunstall store called that night to say the delivery to their Middleport home had been cancelled because one of its drivers was off ‘sick’ – and the shopping could not be transferred to another van.

And with security guard Mark – who cannot drive – unable to get to the store they found all other delivery slots fully booked.

Asda ended up refunding the £42 cost of the shopping and apologised for any ‘inconvenience’.

For the full story, click here.

Blundering Royal Mail compensates customer Chris after mobile phone delivery mix-up

Chris Knapper has been compensated by Royal Mail

 

Dad Chris Knapper slammed Royal Mail’s customer service – after never receiving his daughter’s mobile phone.

The 54-year-old had been waiting for the iphone 11 Pro Max to arrive after it was posted to his Dresden home from Cornwall so the screen could be repaired.

But it never arrived and then he got a text alert to say somebody had tried to gain access into the phone.

And his subsequent investigations with Royal Mail’s call centre and its Longton sorting office failed to locate the missing phone which was worth up to £1,000.

Royal Mail  ‘compensated’ Chris for the missing phone.

For the full story, click here.

Taxpayer Trevor slams ‘ridiculous’ council after refusing to pay plasterboard tip charge

Federation Road Tip in Burslem

 

Taxpayer Trevor Ball  branded the council ‘ridiculous’ – after being told to pay up to dispose of a ‘very small piece’ of plasterboard at the tip.

The 57-year-old took the offending piece of plasterboard to Burslem tip, on Federation Road.

And he returned to his Burslem home with the same piece of plasterboard after being informed of the charge.

Instead he put it in a bin bag, smashed it to bits, and put it in his grey bin.

The basic charge to dispose of plasterboard at Stoke-on-Trent City Council‘s two tips – in Burslem and Hanford – is £4.10. It can rise to £164.65 for a van full of plasterboard.

For more on this story, click here.

Miriam, 88, demands council action after landing in thick sludge following fall

Miriam points at the spot she fell getting out of a taxi, she ended up covered in sludge with an injured arm

 

An 88-year-old hit out at the council after slipping over outside her home and landing in four-inches of thick sludge.

Miriam Bestford fell to the ground after getting out of a taxi outside her Smallthorne home.

And she blamed Stoke-on-Trent City Council for not maintaining the land around the property.

But the council claimed Miriam was on an unadopted alleyway at the back of her bungalow when she got out of the taxi. Unadopted alleyways are not maintained by the local authority.

Council tenant Miriam hurt her arm when she fell outside the Apollo Walk bungalows.

For more in this story, click here.

Disabled Elvis fan gutted to get council noise complaint over his 2pm karaoke sessions inside Stoke-on-Trent bungalow

Elvis fan Paul Howard was hurt to receive a noise complaint

 

Karaoke king Paul Howard was flabbergasted to receive a council phone call following a complaint he was singing too loudly in his own home.

The 62-year-old Elvis fan loved nothing more than to have an afternoon karaoke session crooning classic ballads in his bedroom between 2pm to 4pm most days.

But he was dismayed to be told his soothing voice was upsetting one of the neighbours after he returned to his Smallthorne home from a four-day stay in hospital.

Other residents then leaped to disabled Paul’s defence after he posted about the upsetting call from Stoke-on-Trent City Council on Facebook.

For more on this story, click here.

Blundering council leaves Stokie’s beloved private lawn looking like this – after mowing it by mistake

The lawn in Heathside Lane, Goldenhill

 

Council bosses apologised to an OAP whose beloved front lawn was destroyed – after one of their gardeners mowed it by mistake.

The 77-year-old paid specialist lawn treatment service GreenThumb to maintain the grass outside her Heathside Lane home, in Goldenhill.

But the homeowner was horrified when she looked out of her window earlier this week to see a council worker on a sit-on mower on her lawn.

Stoke-on-Trent City Council offered to re-seed her pride and joy after the gardener had done a circuit of her lawn.

Son Anthony Harley-Jones shared pictures of the horseshoe-shaped mark left on the otherwise pristine grass.

For more on this story, click here.





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