A licensee has vowed never to deal with British Gas again after he received a renewal supply contract offering prices that would equate to a 97% increase.
Joe Cussens, of the Chequers in Bath, said that his April gas bill would increase from £291 to £573, if the new prices were applied to it.
He called British Gas to discuss the matter, which then led to a revised offer of a 48% rise, or pushing the April bill up to £431.
Cussens said: "I've since shopped around and found a supplier that can limit my new price rise to 'just' 45%. I know wholesale energy prices have increased, but I'm shocked that I'll be paying around 45% more for my gas. That's a hell of a rise in anyone's language.
"The Chequers is struggling to break even as it is, with these prices, I am really concerned about the outlet's viability. If these rises are typical of what other pubs may experience, I'm guessing that it may be the final nail in the coffin for some.
"What I find really appalling, however, is that British Gas tries to sign its exist-
ing customers onto a new contract at hugely inflated prices with their initial
offer letter, only to immediately slash the prices quoted
when challenged. How can it
justify such behaviour?
"Let's not forget, we're talking rolling contracts here where, unless you're careful, you can be automatically put on to their highest rate. Needless to say, I shall be taking all of my gas/electricity supply contracts away from British Gas now."
British Gas was unable to comment.