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David Lloyd sorry for 'pestering' cancer patient over membership
AN upmarket health club has apologised for the way it dealt with a newly-diagnosed cancer sufferer who wanted to cancel her membership.
Georgina Shepherd insists there is ‘no way’ she will go back to David Lloyd gym in Wooburn Green - claiming she felt "harassed" by head office staff who seemed more concerned about her £75 monthly fees than her health.
David Lloyd said there was an “internal miscommunication between the club and head office”, and apologised unreservedly for any distress caused.
Mrs Shepherd, who lives off Clapton Approach in Wooburn Green, first approached gym staff about her health issues back in the April, when they agreed to suspend the membership while various medical assessments and a biopsy were carried out.
Over the next few months Mrs Shepherd said she provided photocopies of appointment letters to the gym to update them on her case, but said she was still contacted repeatedly by the firm’s head office asking when she would be returning.
The 47-year-old told the Bucks Free Press: "I felt I was being harassed at that point....It seemed like every two or three weeks they would phone up asking when I was coming back. That’s all they want to know - it’s all about the money for them."
Then following a conclusive biopsy test on July 18, Mrs Shepherd was told she had vulval cancer.
Unable to attend the gym for the foreseeable future and with her membership due to expire in August, she asked David Lloyd to cancel it outright - reluctantly agreeing when staff said they could put it on ‘freeze’.
But on September 7 she was shocked to receive a bill from David Lloyd, saying her membership account was two months in arrears and she owed £150.
When Mrs Shepherd phoned the firm’s head office to explain the situation she was upset by a 'rude' female staff member and claims she was told 'I thought you would be better by now'.
Mrs Shepherd, who works for a newsagent in Beaconsfield, admits getting angry during the call but said there was no apology from the woman at any point.
She added: "It’s a very posh gym and the staff there are lovely, but the head office staff are rude and horrible. There’s no way I ever want to go back there now."
A spokesman for David Lloyd said: "We are extremely sorry to hear about Mrs Shepherd’s illness.
"It appears there has been some internal miscommunication between the club and head office regarding Mrs Shepherd’s circumstances, and we apologise unreservedly for any distress caused as a result of this.
"We are very sorry if any communications with Mrs Shepherd fell short of our usually high standards of customer service."
She said the membership is being cancelled with immediate effect and all outstanding fees waived, adding: "We would like to take this opportunity to wish Mrs Shepherd well for the future."