Landlord of pub in Broxted laughs off ‘Prince Charles’ gas bill

Terry Gaskin and Karen Rand with the letter from British Gas, address to Prince Charles.

Terry Gaskin and Karen Rand with the letter from British Gas, address to Prince Charles. - Credit: Archant

The landlord of the Prince of Wales pub in Broxted was given a shock when he received a letter addressed to HRH Prince Charles over an unpaid £1,773.30 gas bill.

Terry Gaskin, 57, who has been running the pub for three years with his partner Karen Rand, thought it was “a wind up” when he opened the letter on Saturday morning.

But after showing it to a few of his customers it appeared to be real. The letter said British Gas had contacted Prince Charles a number of times over the unpaid debt and that his account had been transferred to the PRA Group.

Mr Gaskin said: “It is just amazing how something like this can happen. I thought it was someone having a wind up at first – I am sure Prince Charles pays his bills!”

He added: “We are not on the gas meter, any gas we do have is bottled gas and I pay for that every week. British Gas has phoned me up and since apologised. They don’t know why the letter got sent here. It is nothing to do with me and it is nothing to do with the pub.”

Since the letter arrived, Mr Gaskin said all his regulars had been having a good laugh about it.

“They keep asking if they need a royal appointment to come in,” he joked. “It has been a bit of light entertainment. The pub game is tough and with all the awful news at the moment it is nice to have something to laugh about.”

Most Read

Mr Gaskin also said there were no hard feelings between him and the future King of England.

“If his Highness was to fly out of Stansted he would be more than welcome to come in for a drink,” Mr Gaskin told the Broadcast. “We have nice real ales on the bar and I understand he likes a tipple. I am sure it is not him who deals with the household bills, maybe Camilla, but not Charles.”

Mr Gaskin’s mother Betty Gaskin, 84, who lives in Chelmsford, was very concerned her son would lose the pub over the mix up and when he told British Gas about her worries, they said they would send her a bouquet of flowers to apologise.

A spokesman for British Gas said: “His Royal Highness can rest assured that he was not the intended recipient of this letter. We’re looking into how the error occurred so that it can be resolved.”