3 months ago I ordered a tubular manifold for my car from an established online seller who makes these to order (i.e. does not keep a stock) but they are made so they fit all car models for which they are made - so crucially the item can be sold to another customer for the same price (as opposed to the example recently of bespoke window shutters for a specific house’s set of windows).
This should have arrived within 4 weeks. I chased a couple of times and was told “it would arrive next week”. When I phoned yesterday and was fobbed off with the same excuse I asked very clearly if he’d started making it yet - “No”. I told him to cancel and refund me and he agreed. Two minutes later I get an email from his invoicing system saying order cancelled and refunded. Fine.
An hour after this I get an email saying “order processed” and “payment taken”. After subsequent grilling this was not an unauthorized payment as he never actually refunded me, he just sent that email. He also text me at the same time saying “my mistake, production started on Friday, you’ll get it this week”. Yeah, likely story. I told him as far as I was concerned the order is cancelled and I would be refusing delivery and that he had 15 calendar days to refund me.
Things got a bit messy through the day, him saying I couldn’t cancel etc etc. I didn’t take his bait on anything and kept everything from that point in writing. He was blaming the pandemic for stainless steel supplies. My point was that a) he lied by saying it would be with me “next week” previously when I would have been understanding if he’d said from the outset that he’s having supply issues b) we were 12 months into UK’s lockdowns when I placed my order, maybe I’m an a****hole but I’m not accepting that as an excuse anymore, that’s more than enough time to build up a backlog of raw materials OR update a website with revised delivery times OR just keep your customers updated.
He then went on to say “I’ve got recordings of the phone calls”, I’m not sure why he thought that would be useful thing to say because this would actually benefit me. I told him because he didn’t make any attempt to alert me that calls are recorded that this was a breach of Regulation of Investigatory Powers act 2000. But that I wanted to access these calls under GDPR as I can provide them to my bank and he had 30 days to hand them over, and I asked him to ensure they don’t go missing. He then back tracked and said that he won’t be providing me with the calls because they don’t record the customer, only him. This would still be useful to me but he won’t hand them over.
Maybe I’m petty, but I don’t want the item anymore because I can’t stand lying or incompetence and he’s guilty of both. This was a £600 manifold, more than I might have paid elsewhere but I was happy to pay the premium for the materials used and that the flange is machined after manufacture to fix any warping that happens during welding, a common complaint with tubular manifolds. Because of the cost I’m also covered by Section 75.
My question for the community if they know the answer is how much am I covered here by CCR - the fact that it is made to order shouldn’t absolve him of any responsibity to deliver within a reasonable time frame I don’t think, and certainly shouldn’t stop him from lying through his teeth rather than admit a delay