Financial tech company PayPal has said it will be offering refunds to people who bought tickets to events at Lincolnshire Showground that were promoted by a firm that ceased trading before the shows could take place, after weeks of fallout.
Lincolnshire Showground was due to play host to a live gig by pop band McFly on July 8, and an event called Comedy in the Park, starring the likes of Rob Beckett, Al Murray and John Bishop, the day after.
The events had been put on by a company called M&B Promotions, and both had been postponed from their original July 2021 dates due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
However, in February 2022 the shows were cancelled for good, following an announcement from M&B Promotions that it would cease trading along with its sister ticketing company Simple Ticketing Ltd.
In a statement posted to customers and the M&B Promotions website, the company said: “It is with a heavy heart and deep regret that we must announce the cancellation of all of our scheduled events, and the end of operations for M&B Promotions Ltd and our ticket platform Simple Ticketing Ltd.
“Despite the best efforts of everyone involved, this combined with the extreme logistical and financial setbacks caused by the pandemic mean it’s no longer viable for us to continue trading.”
Addressing the frustration of numerous ticket buyers, the company said that customers should contact PayPal for a refund if they bought their tickets via easyticketing.co.uk, or their bank card provider to administer a charge back.
The plot thickened when hundreds of customers spoke out about their difficulty getting refunds, due to a PayPal policy which meant you only had 180 days to report a problem and ask for your money back.
Despite the initial events being postponed by the pandemic, this factor was not considered, so people who bought a ticket when the shows were first announced in 2020 had surpassed the 180 day deadline, and could not get refunds.
A Facebook support group was set up by ticket buyers for M&B Promotions events across the country, including various Comedy in the Park shows, as well as UB-40 and McFly gigs.
PayPal has now responded, and it has confirmed that the 180 day policy will be waivered and customers are entitled to refunds no matter when they bought the tickets.
A spokesperson for PayPal told The Lincolnite: “Most of our customers use PayPal every day without any issues, but sometimes things don’t go as expected and that’s why we offer our Buyer Protection programme. Customers have 180 days from the date of a payment to tell us about a problem with their purchase under PayPal’s Buyer Protection programme.
“Given the exceptional circumstances, we have decided to accept and review Buyer Protection claims after the 180-day deadline for customers who used PayPal to pay Simple Ticketing for tickets to events.
“We will be using our discretion to make goodwill refunds to customers who have eligible claims under the terms of the Buyer Protection programme. We will be contacting customers who have already made a claim, including those whose claims we previously rejected as beyond the 180-day deadline. We will also consider further claims.
“We’d like to thank customers for their patience as we work through their claims in these exceptional circumstances.”
According to the Northamptonshire Telegraph, PayPal will be refunding tickets for the M&B events at Wicksteed Park, a venue which had previously said the promotions firm didn’t pay them any money and ignored multiple contact requests before going under.