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Skiing Europe/Chris Reynard - Children's ski holiday left in ruins.

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
altis wrote:
The great Skiing Europe debacle is to feature on Radio 4's Face the Facts programme at 12:30pm on Wednesday, 18th May.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b007tmlp

btw - for those without an old fashioned wireless or DAB Radio, you can listen online to Radio4 FM at:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/console/bbc_radio_fourfm
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Hmm phone number appears to be disconnected... or at least 'no longer accepting incoming calls...'
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
snowjoe, thanks for that, not being as old as the average SH I've never listened to R4 Toofy Grin
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smithski, Very Happy
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Shimmy Alcott wrote:
snowjoe, thanks for that, not being as old as the average SH I've never listened to R4 Toofy Grin

So tell us Shimmy what attracted you to the elderly skiers forum Laughing
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 You'll need to Register first of course.
You'll need to Register first of course.
Boredsurfing, searching for childcare in snowy places. Google is a very dangerous place. I'll let you know when I'm ready for a Sugar Daddy.
ski holidays
 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Yep. Strangely when I found the link I found myself listening to it for about 30minutes. Worrying.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Stephen101, you stated SE/CR had to offer a refund, that is incorrect in that he can offer three options for the parents to consider, not the school. 'As soon as possible' is not a time scale imv - 28 days is a time scale. You post did not distinguish between schools, it was a generalisation. Only 'price' is specificically referred to as an essential term therefore other terms would need to be specifically argued as being essential. Scottish law would not need to be adopted, just add a single clause (to the non existent Contract) to protect the consumer and allow a breach of a defined 'essential' term by SE/CR to be considered as a rescission of the contract, that way the consumer can cancel. 'Absolutely clear' were your very words as I quoted at the start of my post. My post was to clarify that your assertions and interpretations are as misleading or as valid as mine, a lawyers and anyone elses, and that this entire situation is a mess.


Last edited by After all it is free Go on u know u want to! on Tue 17-05-11 17:00; edited 1 time in total
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
ccl, it only took 20 minutes of actually reading the Regulations and it clarified some specifics of the Regulations. I was not advocating Scottish law, simple adopting a clause the allowed the rescission of the Contract for the breach of a pre-defined 'essential' term. This is normal in construction contracts for, as an example, non payemnt by an employer or wholly suspending the works by a contractor - i.e. a pre-determined repudiatory breach of contract
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Ski the Net with snowHeads
rayscoops,
Quote:

Stephen101, you stated SE/CR had to offer a refund, that is incorrect in that he can offer three options for the parents to consider, not the school.

No read regulation 12 - the choice has to be given to him (i.e. the consumer) - the correct legal wording for what you suggest would be either x or y or similar

As for what an essential term is - I don't thing many lawyers would have a problem in arguing that essential terms extended beyond just the price - particularly given the minimum contents of a contract per Schedule 2 and because there is already quite a lot of precednt in this area. Also if you look at the Mount Grace letters to Reynard which clearly had legal involvement you will

My post did not distinguish between schools because i) life is too short ii) i don't know the specific circumstances in each case (it may not stop you but it does stop me) and iii) I don't want to be seen as giving legal advice on specific cases - so yes I am dealing in generalisations

Quote:

just add a single clause (to the non existent Contract) to protect the consumer and allow a breach of a defined 'essential' term by SE/CR to be considered as a rescission of the contract


Yes of course they could if the tour operator agreed to a revision of their standard terms and the schools/LEAs had the time and skills to undertake detailed contractual negotiations
- this is of course why inthe real world - retail contracts such as this are given statutory protection (Unfair Contract Terms Act, Package Holiday Regs etc) and also why the contracts are no where near as lengthy as commercial contracts where such protection is not available.
Quote:

My post was to clarify that your assertions and interpretations are as misleading or as valid as mine, a lawyers and anyone elses
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
Blimey, just come back to this and you are still rattling on.

If Reynard has not been in court yet, he has definitely spent it all.

Any talk on clauses and regulation is like pissing into a head wind.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
As well as the Radio4 programme it will also be featured on the BBC1 local news at 1.30 today, it had a small feature on the BBC1 Breakfast local news
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
'Local' meaning London that is wink
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Stephen101 wrote:
rayscoops,
Quote:

Stephen101, you stated SE/CR had to offer a refund, that is incorrect in that he can offer three options for the parents to consider, not the school.

No read regulation 12 - the choice has to be given to him (i.e. the consumer) - the correct legal wording for what you suggest would be either x or y or similar

Puzzled Clause 12 in essence relates to changes that have an impact upon price, and does include either/or options Puzzled , Clause 12 is read in accordance with Clause 11 with respect to changes to the (non existent) Contract. Clause 11 has either /or options too

Clause 12
12. In every contract there are implied terms to the effect that—
(a)where the organiser is constrained before the departure to alter significantly an essential term of the contract, such as the price (so far as regulation 11 permits him to do so), he will notify the consumer as quickly as possible in order to enable him to take appropriate decisions and in particular to withdraw from the contract without penalty or to accept a rider to the contract specifying the alterations made and their impact on the price; and.
(b)the consumer will inform the organiser or the retailer of his decision as soon as possible.

Clause 11
(2) The consumer is entitled—

(a)to take a substitute package of equivalent or superior quality if the other party to the contract is able to offer him such a substitute; or.
(b)to take a substitute package of lower quality if the other party to the contract is able to offer him one and to recover from the organiser the difference in price between the price of the package purchased and that of the substitute package; or.
(c)to have repaid to him as soon as possible all the monies paid by him under the contract.

There is a strict due process that has to be followed, and actually what becomes more evident as I read the Regulations is that the school as the Retailer and as the 'the Other Party' to the (non existent) Contract (both the Retailer and Organiser can be the Other Party) has a huge responsibility and liability.

SE/CR failed to provide what he should have, schools fooked up in protecting the financial/contractual rights of the parents, both schools and SE/CR are liable to the consumer and both have probably acted negligently at the best, SE/CR has a load of legal wiggle room because of the actions of some schools to cancel the trip and not follow due process (God bless Mount Grace who never formally cancelled and simply refused alternative options)

I have no wish for any parent or school to lose out and SE/CR should morally meets its financial obligations, but your interpretation of the issues is so one sided that it is dangerously misleading and it is this which brings me make such posts. I think I will stop doing so because it is only serving to highlight the negligence of schools in all of this and the ease with which SE/CR may wriggle their way out of it all, even if there is any money left
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
cathy, We will rely on you Southron folk to keep us informed then. Cool

rayscoops, Could you clarify something for me, please? Am I right in thinking your views are those of a layman without any particular expertise in this matter - much the same as me in other words? I am asking not to attack these views or challenge in any way, but just to understand what sort of status to give them in my understanding of the situation. Thanks
ski holidays
 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Stephen101, rayscoops, Interesting nitpicking of the small print but I don't think anyone but SE acted badly here. Schools certainly were not negligent. Those schools that accepted alternative arrangements were simply avoiding making a decision at all and were either lucky or not with the outcome. Even Mount Grace who (it seems) tried VERY hard to avoid being cornered got NOWHERE with a refund or the legal process with SE so far.
Those trips have been a debacle and SE should be ashamed to run them like that. I guess when there is NO money in the account to pay, even last minute, things get desperate. Possession is truly 9/10th of the law and the law so far has been pretty toothless.
Remember the last time CR got into this situation, he was able to defend using Legal Aid. Maybe this time he will claim 'commercial sabotage' and sue the schools and LEA for bringing his company name into disrepute. Nothing would surprise me since lawyers seem to support any motion if they are paid to do so.

And lets not forget the so called bonding and insurance of deposits paid (by AITO in this case) - they are wriggling and waiting for a legal pronouncement, hoping they can find a way not to pay anyone. I am not saying they will not meet their obligations, but they will, naturally, seek to minimise those obligations.

And even if you took the high level view and could simply say what is obvious - that SE owes schools and parents a refund for holidays that SE didn't provide. There still seems little chance of there being £1m of assets to pay it, plus the costs. Ho Hum.

We'll be doing our own thing next year, methinks. Shame.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
snowjoe wrote:
..... Schools certainly were not negligent....


Unless you were involved in the contracts for each and every school, I don't see how you can say that.

Quote:
Even Mount Grace who (it seems) tried VERY hard to avoid being cornered got NOWHERE with a refund or the legal process with SE so far.


As of today, says who?
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
snowjoe, unfortunately the legal nit-picking will be how this is resolved, irrespective of the morality of it all

If you doing your own thing next year (whether through a TO in some form or by yourselves) make sure you set it up correctly, that you are not classed as a 'Retailer' and/or 'Other Party', and that each parent is contracting with a TO as Retailer/Organiser, that timescales are defined rather than left 'as soon as possible', that all contractual deliberations are in writing, that a change of essential terms is defined and that if the alternative offers are not acceptable then it is defined as constituting a repudiation/rescission of the contract by the Organiser. This is basic commercial administraction and nothing fancy.
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bar shaker wrote:
Blimey, just come back to this and you are still rattling on.
If Reynard has not been in court yet, he has definitely spent it all.
Any talk on clauses and regulation is like pissing into a head wind.

I will rattle on for some time yet, my motivation is 1. to try and get £900 back from Reynard 2. advertise and tell the world about this mess so they don't get dragged in to the sorry tale.
Reynard moans on about sobotage. I have a lot more rattle left yet! Evil or Very Mad[about £900 worth]


Last edited by You need to Login to know who's really who. on Mon 6-06-11 9:01; edited 1 time in total
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
snowjoe wrote:
altis wrote:
The great Skiing Europe debacle is to feature on Radio 4's Face the Facts programme at 12:30pm on Wednesday, 18th May.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b007tmlp

btw - for those without an old fashioned wireless or DAB Radio, you can listen online to Radio4 FM at:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/console/bbc_radio_fourfm



Dont forget this is today !
ski holidays
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snowjoe,
Quote:

Schools certainly were not negligent.

They where certainly negligent in their due dilligence, this guy had history going back many years.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
rayscoops,

Your reading of Clause 12 and what amounts to an essential team is just plain wrong and inconsistent with how it is interpreted by the Courts in practice. How do I know - perhaps rather than reading the Regulations for 20 minutes from a nit picking semantic viewpoint I actually have some experience with dealing with similar regulations and have also bothered to look at some case law in this area - there is quite a lot arising from SARS/icelandic volcanoes etc. Clause 12 is pretty clear - the consumer has to be given the choices it is not for the TO to offer one or the other. It is also pretty clear from the Mount Grace letter to Reyanrd that their lawyer wqas clear that they had the right to demand the choice.

You also make the assumption that the schools that cancelled in February did not take any legal advice despite only having 12 hours to do so and Reynard not offering any specific alternatives whatsoever (and in fact not respeonding to communications from the school). I know this to be wrong based upon a first hand account in my particular case.

Yes there may be legal debates to be had but they are probably not the ones that you think - as you will realise once you do some proper research.

Your advice to snowjoe to treat a contract as a commercial contract is just plain silly - I would suggest that he just does some checking into the history and background of the holiday company - unless he has expertise in drawing up commercial contracts and can find a holiday company that is willing to modify its standard terms. Do you seek to specify essential terms every time you buy a toaster or similar!
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
leedsunited,
Quote:

They where certainly negligent in their due dilligence, this guy had history going back many years.



What if they relied upon the LEA to approve the TO? What if those concerned did not have the skills/knowledge to perform such due diligence and wasn't asked to do so? Not as clear as you think I'm afraid - I always find it interesting that although you rightly think that innocent until proved guilty should apply to Reynard, you are quite happy to accuse teachers/schools of taking bribes/negligence (both of which are matters for the court to decide) without applying a similar standard. But then you are not a teacher basher are you?

Yes there are matters to look at regqarding the schools - but that is not the same as concluding that they have broken criminal/civil law and there are degrees of error before reaching that level.
ski holidays
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rayscoops,

Fortunately the trade organisation for European Travel Agents has a rather wider view of what constitutes an "essential term" - see the answers to questions 23 and 25 here http://www.ectaa.org/Portals/0/Final%20response%20of%20ECTAA%20to%20consultation%20PTD.pdf - and note that change of hotel and or destination are viewed by the ECTAA as a change of "essential terms".
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Ski the Net with snowHeads
leedsunited wrote:
snowjoe,
Quote:

Schools certainly were not negligent.

They where certainly negligent in their due dilligence, this guy had history going back many years.


All I can add there is that SE also had trading history going back years where things were running more or less fine and they were LEA approved as a TO specialising in School groups. No doubt there were also many previous trip recommendations too. Without CR being a Director of SE until recently, there was little visibility of his involvement (unless you recognise his mugshot), and as we know, Googling for "skiing europe" is not so easily done and previously didn't register much. Add to that the nice looking AITO Bond and you'd think this was a solid choice. Only time has shown that to be different and hind-sight is an exact science. I doubt CR wanted SE to fail, but when it started to he seems to have resorted to previous form and in desperation has shafted a lot of people.

Also, has anyone been refunded? I'd have thought this thread would have heard something about it if so.

Radio4 in 25 mins Smile
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snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
Radio 4 in 5 Very Happy
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Financial Notoriety!!
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So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
Reynard has £4m in assets as seen by AiTo!
Nice piece Radio 4 and well done on dragging out some facts. Very Happy
ski holidays
 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Stephen101, I have not said any thing is not an essential term, I have said the only term defined as 'essential' it within the Regulations is 'price'.

I agree it is for the Organiser to offer the choices and that the Consumer (parent) can elect to chose any of them, that is what I have said and I have not said the offer of one option therefore precludes the other two possible offers under Clause 11, and we agree on this; it is you in the original post that said SE/CR had to offer a refund but you made not mention that actually there are other items that could also be offered in addition to a refund which I found very, maybe even deliberately, misleading.

I made no assumption about any schools in February, I was replying to your blanket statement that did not define which school you were talking about, be it cancellations of holidays in Feb or April.

What is plain silly is teachers handing over up ton £100K to people with a track record like CR without due diligence and appropriate contractual protection. I have been drafting contracts for 20 years and yes I amend every one specifically for circumstances relating to painting a fence or building a power station. Unless a teacher has expertise in drafting contracts then they should not procuring £100 K ski holidays based upon standard Regulations.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
noskitrip wrote:
Reynard has £4m in assets as seen by AiTo!
Nice piece Radio 4 and well done on dragging out some facts. Very Happy


HAD ?
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Yes, that was a good piece of work by Radio4. Quite staggering when you hear it all laid out like that. Reynard has extraordinary front.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
AiTo showed themselves to be pretty impotent?
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Chatting to a local private school Headmaster he knows of at least 1 private school that has 'hushed up' the fact they have had to pay again for a Reynard ski trip, in order to protect the schools reputation. I wonder how many other schools are doing the same. Sad
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Boredsurfing wrote:
Chatting to a local private school Headmaster he knows of at least 1 private school that has 'hushed up' the fact they have had to pay again for a Reynard ski trip, in order to protect the schools reputation. I wonder how many other schools are doing the same. Sad

I know of 1 other that lost deposits to Reynard then rebooked elsewhere.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
The programme was very short on facts (or, anyway, on what a lawyer would call facts!) and information/advice on possible ways forward, I thought. Disappointing.
ski holidays
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It would be interesting to see what money this shyster takes from his business venture for personal use. I bet HMRC would be able to dig up some anomalies.
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Shimmy Alcott wrote:
AiTo showed themselves to be pretty impotent?
Yes. It apears they accepted at face value a set of accounts from a sole trader!

Also, I missed the first 5 minutes of the broadcast... did they mention Lyme Bay?
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
rayscoops,

At last we are getting somewhere - changing the hotel/resort can be an essential term and if Reynard changes them he has to offer a full refund as one of the options (btw I never said he couldn't offer other things - possibly because he had and that was clear from what was said previously - although this was a fairly vague there is accomodation somewhere left unspecified). The next step of course is that if he did not offer the full refund he is in breach of the Regulations and of an implied term of the contract (read the Regs) - i.e. he has broken the contract and he did it before the school cancelled - and the schools have a debt which they can pursue legally. And if Reynard doesn't pay then actions can be taken for his bankruptcy (which would then trigger the insurance. All of this of course depends on court processes and the evidence supporting the particulars of each case - but surely now you can see the basis of the case and the process that needs to be followed.

I'm not arguing that there are problems with the process whereby Reynard was approved as a Tour Operator (far from it)- but you don't know you was responsible in each process - and throwing around accusations of bribery and negligence is just plain silly. I think you also ignore that nearly all package holidays are sold on standard contracts offered by the Tour operators - and even travel agents handling millions of business do not get involved in negotiating all their customers contracts in the manner you suggest. If a school booked a school trip through a large company such as TUI, or one which had been properly vetted by the LEA/some other body then I really doubt much more would be needed.


PS You may think I am being deliberately misleading - but I'll keep my thoughts about you to myself.
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Bode Swiller,
Quote:

did they mention Lyme Bay?


Not directly but did a piece on his early busineses
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I agree on the comments re AiTO - I wonder if there are other sole traders which they approve for membership on a similar basis. As for feeling that they have not lived up to their marketing spiel about financial protection and peace of mind when booking through AiTO - it sounded as although their own spokeswoman wasn't too convinced. If I were AiTO I would be working to amke sure that the insurance arrangements were triggered.

As for the broadcast - I suspect many schools were avoiding being too specific about facts and/or the actions they were taking as they wil want to keep their powder dry for the courts. The Fraud Squad will I supect be giving a higher profile to their enquiries and the politicians will also be pushing for action as a result of the programme, which must be to the good.
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