A North East couple that was “named and shamed” for allegedly not paying their bill have responded after a social media post went viral.

Clare and Joanne, who wish not to have their surnames used, were shamed by The Townhouse in Durham after allegedly leaving the venue without paying for the goods on Saturday.

The pair, whose pictures was shared on social media by the venue, was accused of making off for food they consumed and not paying a penny.

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At the time, the hotel said: “They’ve held a wedding at our hotel let us rack up huge food costs and then leave without paying.

The Northern Echo: The Townhouse Durham. Picture: GOOGLE MAPSThe Townhouse Durham. Picture: GOOGLE MAPS (Image: Google)

“I’m so disappointed that someone would do this, they haven’t requested to pay in installments when we’ve called them and asked them to pay they’ve just out right refused.

“So we’re trying to find their address to send them some legal correspondence as we won’t let this slide. Times and expenses are too tough not to pursue this money! If these people work for you or if you know them please get in touch so we can try and recover our money.”

Now, however, Clare and Joanne have given their side on what they say “really” happened as the venue themselves has responded again.

The couple told The Northern Echo that prior to their big day, it was agreed that as they didn't get paid until after the event with a former manager, they could pay several days later.

They claimed, however, a member of staff was “rude” and had “cut short” the disco that had been held. 

They also claimed the buffet, which was brought out at 9pm, was packed away just an hour later, despite agreement for it to be left until the event finished. It was also different to what they ordered.

The Northern Echo: CCTV footage The Townhouse Durham posted on Facebook of guests enjoying their buffet at 10:22pm. Picture: THE TOWNHOUSE DURHAM/FACEBOOKCCTV footage The Townhouse Durham posted on Facebook of guests enjoying their buffet at 10:22pm. Picture: THE TOWNHOUSE DURHAM/FACEBOOK (Image: The Townhouse Durham/Facebook)

The pair said: “(The manager) was rude and cut the disco short and sent us all to our rooms at 11pm because she said she wanted to go to bed and so everyone else had to go to bed too. It was supposed to be on til midnight."

The couple said they raised these issues with staff the next morning and say they received apologies from the staff and a free Sunday lunch, and the chef even prepared some chicken wings to take home for a guest in a pizza box.

The couple then stayed another night and on Monday they spoke to the manager and left a letter of complaint with contact details and address and paid their their final £249 room bill.

The say they arranged to then have a meeting on Thursday (September 29) to discuss the issues and the bill discprepencies.

They were then stunned to discover when they returned home that the post had gone on Facebook claiming they had left without paying.

They then allegedly claimed they received a message threatening to expose them for allegedly not paying.

According to the pair, they said that since the Townhouse's Facebook post was published on Monday evening (September 26) they had become subject to abuse not only from hotel staff but also from the public.

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In response, a hotel spokeswoman said: “They had a great time and they kept saying thank you so much and they even put out a post on Facebook about what a great day/night they’d had. 

“There were no managers working on Monday morning so the bill was sorted beforehand on the Sunday night ready to give them on Monday.

“They left without paying the full bill. We tried to contact them. They came out with some crazy allegations, honestly, you couldn’t make it up.”

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She added: “They owed just over £1,150 and have so far paid about £200. They’ve both come out with some outrageous lies about how we agreed they could pay sometime this week but that is not true, it was agreed they’d pay on Monday morning as they told us they got paid on Sunday night at midnight.

“Being nice to people gets you much further much faster but this situation has just been an absolute nightmare.”

Clare and Joanne claimed a buffet was brought out at 9pm and cleared away at 9:30pm. CCTV footage the Townhouse posted on its Facebook page, however, shows guests enjoying the buffet still at 10.22pm, something the pair has refuted.

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