MARCH: Readers explain how they lost their money in kitchens and bathrooms scam
By LOUISE HUGHES WORKING mum Rachel Bayford paid £1,000 deposit for a new kitchen in January with Tilecraft Ltd before it was scammed by a Canadian businessman. I thought my kitchen was going to be fitted by a reliable local company, she said. Now, I
By LOUISE HUGHES
WORKING mum Rachel Bayford paid £1,000 deposit for a new kitchen in January with Tilecraft Ltd before it was scammed by a Canadian businessman.
"I thought my kitchen was going to be fitted by a reliable local company," she said.
"Now, I'm in a battle to get a lot of money back."
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Rachel is among the customers and contractors who are owed cash by the interiors firm, which had branches in Station Road, March and Peterborough.
Many contacted the Cambs Times following our exclusive front page report about the firm's current situation last week.
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Those affected by Tilecraft who have contacted us include:-
n Customer Steve Isley who has not had a bathroom in his home for six weeks.
n Pensioners Peter and Norma White paid a £1,375 deposit for work.
n Customer Rosemary Holmes who signed two contracts for a bathroom and cloakroom installation for a disabled member of her family. She paid a £1,250 deposit.
m Shelley Watts, and her husband Simon, a plasterer who is owed £1115 by the firm.
Rachel and her partner Nick Seaton decided to invest in a new kitchen when they moved to Wigstone's Road with her six-year-old Haydyn (SIC) in November.
When their bathroom was close to being finished, the couple chose their kitchen from the Tilecraft Ltd showroom in March.
She said: "The total cost of the job was going to be about £5000. We wanted a full re-fit with the oven, hobs, granite tops and walnut finishings.
"I looked for other quotes and chose to stay local in case anything went wrong.
"Without thinking, I paid the deposit on my debit card and asked for the work to begin in April or May.
"I didn't realise what was going on down there until Nick and I returned to the store to choose the finishing touches - the whole place was locked up.
"I've been doing my own investigations, spoken to various people and even managed to contact Bob Roche himself. But everyone says they will call you back, and they never do.
"We both work hard and I handed over that money in good faith. This has been a nightmare."
Mr Isley, another customer, has urged others to lodge their complaints to Consumer Direct.
"If there are enough case numbers, they may take this situation more seriously," he added.
Business partners in Tilecraft Interiors Phill Gregory and Mark Shoesmith thought they had sold Tilecraft Interiors for £600,000 - but ended up being paid just £10 for it.
They transferred the business to a businessman Bob Roche last October and it began trading as a subsidiary of his holding company BTP Ltd.
However, apart from £10 paid on completion, the pair claim they have not received any more payments.
After their own investigations, they found out that Mr Roche's involvement with other companies which have recently ceased trading.
Are you affected by the Tilecraft situation? If so, please contact us via our website or firstname.lastname@example.org.