Honda XRV Forum banner

1 - 13 of 13 Posts

·
2 bikes = twice as happy
Joined
·
4,354 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
This is what I said...

Hi Kieran and Laura,



I thought you might appreciate some honest feedback following our weekend camping at GAC.



I am sorry to have to say we were disappointed overall and you failed to live up to your usual standard. The confusion over booking bunks in the bunkhouses was eventually resolved and isn’t part of the feedback but did sour the trip for the people involved. The bulk of my feedback seems to relate to a lack of general management over the facilities on site:

  • there was no hot water at all on Saturday morning after about 8am. Nothing appeared to be done about this until late afternoon with one of the receptionists even arguing with my wife mid-afternoon about the availability of hot water in the ladies showers. Even on Sunday the water was only luke warm.
  • The gents toilets/changing/shower room was smelly and untidy with no toilet roll at one point. It was clearly not being cleaned properly or frequently enough for the number of guests – despite the impressive check list.
  • It was reported to me that the ladies toilet also ran out of toilet roll.
  • The quality of food was very disappointing and most definitely not value for money despite the convenience. The beef stew on Friday was all gravy – I had about 3 small pieces of meat in mine and served almost cold; the sausages and burgers, followed by ice cream served on Saturday was appalling – over cooked barely edible burgers and sausages and two meagre scoops of ice cream. Barely worth half the the price, let alone £10.50. Breakfast on Saturday was little better with reheated bacon or sausage being served in dried up bread rolls. I was particularly embarrassed by the quality of food as I had been telling everyone how good it was. It is unlikely I will be recommending people to eat in the canteen if we come again, and I chose to buy and cook breakfast at my own tent on Sunday.
  • The canteen area was left uncleaned overnight. Plates of the previous evening’s food were left out on the side and tables were not wiped clean before breakfast was served. Hardly an advert for a good start to the day.
  • At breakfast on Saturday the kitchen opened after 8.30 with one poor girl struggling to take orders, set out the breakfast, cook, and clean from the night before all at the same time.
  • There was dog muck in several places around the camping field including in our area. I know the site’s dogs add to the charm of the the campsite but dog muck is intolerable in public areas, especially areas where children are undertaking GAC activities.
Overall I felt very disappointed and although we all enjoyed ourselves the poor facilities and food were a constant theme of conversation. I am not sure I could recommend the site to others and am considering going elsewhere for future events in Galloway. I would be interested in your comments against my points above though before I make any decisions.



regards

The holding response....

Hi Austin
Thanks for this – we know things were not up to scratch through other feedback. Please give us a little time to do our homework and find out what exactly happened after which we will give you a full response. In the meantime please accept my apologies – you are right things did not go to plan.
Richard



The final reply

Austin,

I appreciate your time to give us the feedback and have taken some time to read through your points. As it happens we have already had similar feedback from other member of the group and are aware that the weekend was not up to our usual standards.

To address your points, which with the majority I fully agree with and totally accept.

THE BOOKING PROCESS
This one was really quite difficult and it’s the only point here that I have some defence with. We usually either deal with a group (group leader) individuals or families. The setup of the forum means that we encounter many different people who have booked not through us by though a second or third party (i.e Mr smith has booked a room and sublet beds to Mr a/b/c) then a month or so down the line Mr b can’t make it and passes his room to Mr d) This makes for quite a confusing booking process. This is then escalated by some people booking rooms of 4 for 1 or 2 people, but not happy to pay for the four beds.

To give some examples; I had a lengthy discussion with “Douggie” as he was one of the late bookers on a sub-letted bed and couldn’t understand why it was so difficult. On arrival on the Friday night it was just Dougie in his room (although Mr Neil and another were also meant to be there) and on Sat morning he came to the desk and told us;

“He was on his way home as he had bike issues, and the other 2 members who were due to arrive last night are not coming now for the whole weekend and therefor the room could be “freed up”

2 hours after this the other 2 members arrived and had no idea why Douggie had told us this. We almost re-let the room due to Douggie’s information and I’m sure this would have caused a major issue if we had done so. This is a clear example how 2[SUP]nd[/SUP] and 3[SUP]rd[/SUP] hand information did not help the booking process.

I understand this is no different to other years. This year in particular we have been very busy. Laura who has dealt with the booking process has tried her very best but as a domino effect of both myself and Richard trying to focus on other areas of the centre due to having a young team and some key members of staff moving on (mainly the kitchen) she has had to fill the void within the office. We have brought in more help to back her up, but with more help you inevitably get another person in the chain of communication.

FOOD
We have a new and very young team in this year and they need some close mentoring from myself and Richard, in addition to this we were coping with a very busy weekend it was all hands to the pump and quite simply we had too many Indians and not enough chiefs to manage the process. This is no excuse the food should have been better. This has already been fed back to the kitchen. We pride ourselves in serving home style cooking as you have become used to, this was clearly not up to standard and we will try and have been trying to address this. We knew we were going to busy and so had pre par-cooked the burgers, this resulted in them drying out. We have learnt from this and will not do this again. The irony over the BBQ is that this is normally quite popular but on this occasion it was not up to speed for your group.

HOT WATER
Our boiler packed in late Sat night, in fact we only figured this out as it started to pump out fumes at about 9pm, I would guess in hindsight that it probably started to pack in prior to this and we just didn’t “click”. Usually due to the vast numbers there are phases where the showers go cold after a surge of people but soon recover. Our mistake here was to assume the later and not investigate. We called the plumber on the Saturday night and again on Sunday am but being a weekend we failed to get him down. On Sunday am we turned on an electric immerser which would have helped but would not have the power of the oil boiler. I fully accept this is not a good situation for campers we were slow in reacting but in reality nothing could be fully fixed until the plumber came back from his weekend off on the Monday.

What I really apologise for if how your guests were treated when they came to reception? This is not normally the case, both girls normally have fantastic communication skills – we will investigate this further.

DOG MUCK
We have a daily dog poo patrol each morning. On this particular weekend we were extremely busy, and many of our daily routines were dropped to attend to other pressing issues “fire fighting” (we had a large birthday bash that required a lot of attention from key personnel and any other spare hands) I fully accept this is no excuse, its simply not on to have dog poo in a public area and campsite. We are looking to put in measures to address this further such as poop scoop bins/banning dogs/building a run for onsite dogs etc… We are on this and will try to ensure this doesn’t happen again. At one stage Heather (Richard’s wife) counted 14 dogs on the site – this is simply too many and is something we will address.

To sum up Austin, I really do apologise for your groups experience. You have been coming for many years and we do wish to keep this relationship going (I have mentioned similar words in other responses to Elaine). This was a weekend where to be honest we took too much on. The combination of a busy August bank holiday weekend/40[SUP]th[/SUP] birthday and the re-scheduling of your event due to the snow simply overwhelmed our team and although we had all hand to the pumps (in most cases 12-13 hour days) there was simply not enough man power to cope and the cracks and holes began to show. We did take you on after the weather in April and also took on the birthday party in good faith. In hindsight by trying to please everyone and accommodate them at their chosen times we have managed to achieve completely the opposite – lesson learnt and we will not do this again.

We can’t change what has happened and what we can do by listening to your feedback is learn from this and do things a little differently in the future.

I hope you accept our apology in good faith. Please feel free to pass this onto other members of the forum.

Kieran/Richard



Notwithstanding there are one or two inconsistencies in the response and they are passing blame back to me/us for the cock up on the bunkhouse its a decent reply where they pretty much take the feedback on the chin. I will reply as such.
 

·
OVALTEENY !!!
Joined
·
6,063 Posts
Thanks for doing this Austin

I could not be there this year and I appreciate all your efforts and organisation

I can feel your frustration in how let down you feel, especially with so many new members on this trip

I can assure all those new people that I have been doing ths trip since outset and the standards Austin praised and so have I really do exist
 

·
Grumpy auld man!
Joined
·
1,646 Posts
Austin,

Thanks for posting both your letter, and the reply. It seems they are fully aware of the poor perfomance on the weekend, and I am sure they will remedy the situation as they will not want to lose the income from the event. I like you, feel that trying to evade the issue of booking mix ups is not on. How hard can it be to have a proper booking system? and taking someones word that rooms could be freed up is beyond me as they had already been paid for (I think).

Anyhoo, I do hope it all gets sorted for next time as these events are really great, thanks again for all your hard work both organising it in the first place, and dealing with the complaints. Like Paul said, previous years the facilities were spot on and the food was great, let's hope next year is back to normal.


Andy.
 

·
Older, but no wiser!
Joined
·
3,836 Posts
Thanks very much for posting your detailed email to the GAC, Austin, and the responses you received from them.

Although I was hardly affected other than no shower on Friday night, I was very aware at how disappointed you were with the dreadful service last weekend that some had received. I echo Andy's and paul's comments and if the GAC can learn from their cockups then good...

However, I still feel that a lot of the issues over the w/e can be laid squarely at poor management, if you employ cheap and/or foreign labour then the line management has to be top notch :rolleyes: It wasn't.

However, I still had a great time, potholes notwithstanding, and will be back! I will probably self-cater again mind...:thumbup:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
136 Posts
Very detailed communication and summary of events. Thanks Austin.

I do feel that my attempts to keep lines of communication open have been used against us.

I paid for the full weekend that I booked for but if they let it out again would they have sent me the refund?

The fact remains that they didn't manage to keep abreast of the current situation regarding bookings that they had agreed to. They kept going back to previous arrangements/information causing confusion , distress and ultimately a lack trust.

ps I never said before but the food was shocking and poor value, I didn't trust to even buy a coffee after that.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,635 Posts
Thanks for doing this Austin

I could not be there this year and I appreciate all your efforts and organisation

I can feel your frustration in how let down you feel, especially with so many new members on this trip

I can assure all those new people that I have been doing ths trip since outset and the standards Austin praised and so have I really do exist
#2 :thumbup:
Hopefully just a minor blip that GAC will learn from.

Phil
 

·
Craigypops
Joined
·
6,747 Posts
Thanks, Austin.

So, to sum up, someone says we are not coming at all (Dougie, and it didn't look like we were at first, to be fair to Dougie) so they decide to take his word for it and `nearly` re-let the room, without contacting myself (the original booker)? They have my phone number, address and email from the booking. Maybe they couldn't because they didn't actually make any official bookings so probably didn't have my details anymore, which is why it was cocked up in the first place.

I can see how it could be confusing for them but it's pretty simple. I book a room for 3 of us and there is a spare bed, they put this in their schedule/calendar or whatever they `don't` use... Mike phones up and says he'll have the 4th bed in that room and has confirmed it with me. He then cancels so it's back to the original booking of just 3 of us. Dougie then takes that spare room and they confirm *update the fekkin schedule/calendar*. That room is now filled, Dougie turns up, has bike issues and has to leave so lets them know that he is leaving and doesn't think the other 3 are turning up from what he's read on the forum. Pick up the telephone and phone Mr. Niel (That's me) and confirm, I would then have said, "2 of us are coming for Saturday night only due to various reasons". The room is paid for anyway so what's the problem?

On arrival I even said to him that there is only 2 of us so there are 2 spare beds and feel free to give them to someone if you are struggling for space.

Shower of twats, good job it's you writing the letter Austin :D



Never pay again for live sex! | Hot girls doing naughty stuff for free! | Chat for free!
 

·
Grumpy auld man!
Joined
·
1,646 Posts
No need to get all worked up Craig, just because you did not get to the Electric Brae! :wink: :iconbiggrin:



Andy.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
338 Posts
Apart from coffee & a bacon roll on Saturday morning, I ate away from 'base'
The cold shower was a pis*er, but could have been worse if the weather had been wet & cold during Saturdays excursion :(
Personally it would have took much more than ropey grub & cold water too dampen a great weekend
Count me in for next year :thumb:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10 Posts
I ate away from 'base'
The cold shower was a pis*er, but could have been worse if the weather had been wet & cold during Saturdays excursion :(
Personally it would have took much more than ropey grub & cold water too dampen a great weekend
Count me in for next year :thumb:
I'll second that, my sentiment exactly:thumbup:

Simon
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,600 Posts
A well handled situation by Austin, as ever. Well done sir.

My take on it all? A lukewarm shower on Saturday morning, otherwise all went to plan. The shower on Sunday morning was nice and warm, it was busy in the shower block but as there were several groups there, I'd say acceptable.

Fiona and myself had an absolute hoot and will happily return in the future!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
44 Posts
Only just caught up with this thread as I was just about to post something similar :)
I believe Austin was also cc'd into the response from GAC to my complaint - they said more or less the same as Austin has posted so I won't bore you with the details.
But in addition, I had complained about the male staff in the house who barked at me for not having a sleeping bag (despite the fact that others in the house had bed linen provided). Today, I received a personal letter from that person (Robin) which is much appreciated & a bit of a pleasant surprise!

With a bit of staff training and lessons learned by everyone (including me) I'm sure that next year will be a totally different experience :)

thanks again Austin :thumbright:
 

·
OVALTEENY !!!
Joined
·
6,063 Posts
Only just caught up with this thread as I was just about to post something similar :)
I believe Austin was also cc'd into the response from GAC to my complaint - they said more or less the same as Austin has posted so I won't bore you with the details.
But in addition, I had complained about the male staff in the house who barked at me for not having a sleeping bag (despite the fact that others in the house had bed linen provided). Today, I received a personal letter from that person (Robin) which is much appreciated & a bit of a pleasant surprise!

With a bit of staff training and lessons learned by everyone (including me) I'm sure that next year will be a totally different experience :)

thanks again Austin :thumbright:
My first visit to GAC was a quick dash from work. As I was going to be arriving late I had decided to bunk in with Steve-R and another in one of the sheds

It was heavy rain. Needing to pack light I decided to take the top box only

Frantic attempt at packing beer, food, sleeping bag, toiletries, change of clothes and footware for the weekend

Dilema - it did not fit!! Emptied it all out and repacked, still did not fit, out again in again do the hokey kokey!

Out and then in and the lid closed. Whoopee. On the bike and gone!

Fast thrash up in torrential rain to arrive at a dry GAC and they had been in the sun!

Unpacking the topbox and everything inside was showing signs of being very wet. I cannot imagine that the top box had leaked. On investigation I decided to have a beer and then found that the cans had exploded inside

Still, the sleeping bag was bone dry...............only because I had left it behind at home!

Cold night, just the cover off the mattress for cover and also having several slats missing and the rest loose I fell through a few times when turning over

Still had a great weekend though

Hope you were not too cold Elle
 
1 - 13 of 13 Posts
Top