Linen, linen everywhere; not a space in sight!
We are awash with linen and towels at present at Blenheim Lodge. After 18 months of paying for linen and towel services to a company in Penrith, we have decided to change establishment. In 2012, we had left a large laundry conglomerate after eight years of loyally purchasing their services because the company wanted to make minimum charges of £50 per week plus vat irregardless of whether we were going to use any laundry services up to that amount or any laundry services at all. As we could not afford this minimum charge, we decided to look around for another service provider.
It took a month before I came across the company in Penrith. This small company seemed like it could have been what we were looking for: a local business serving local businesses – and, we could contribute to the local economy. The prices were affordable and we were told that we would only pay for what we used. That sounded fair to us, and so we agreed to a year’s contract.
Within two months, we began to encounter problems with marked towels and linen that were being sent to us as being fit for guests’ use. These items of laundry were duly sent back and, as with all laundries, they were replaced free of charge. Unfortunately, the replacements were similarly stained! After a fraught month of these problems, things settled down and we found a few rather than plenty of stained items being sent to us as clean laundry. We hoped that this would be the end of the matter.
Then, in July this year, we encountered huge problems. Firstly, we were often not sent items that we had ordered for use as per our contract. Secondly, where there was a shortfall, nothing was sent to replace that shortfall which meant that we had to use our own towels and sheets to meet the gap in provision. Thirdly, we began to receive items that we had never ordered before: according to the boss, this was to make up for not sending what we required. (For example, although we only ordered large heavy bath sheets, we were sent small light bath towels instead.) Fourthly, the linen and towels arrived so late in the night as to be useless to us for use in the rooms we had to prepare and service for guests. This miscellany of problems gave us the impetus to look elsewhere for a new laundry provider.
So, after three weeks’ research, I found another local provider. It is more expensive but I think that it will be less of a headache to deal with them. I hope I will not get the usual excuse of ‘Please bear with us while we try to get this right. Please use your own linen and towels instead’ as per the previous laundry. The installation came as agreed today, and now I have 13 bags of linen and towels awaiting my attention. Hubby is going to build some shelves so that he can put them all neatly onto the shelves.
I have signed up for a year with the new linen provider, and I hope that this relationship will be as long lasting as that we had with our first laundry. As long as the prices do not go sky high, and the service is good and reliable, we will be okay. Meanwhile, I am trying to make sense of and sort out the mess of invoices sent by the previous laundry so that I can pay up and put that unhappy experience behind us.
Blenheim Lodge . . . panoramic Lake views, peace and tranquillity, nestled against acres of beautiful fields and woodlands, in the heart of the English Lake District National Park.’
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