Customers struggle to get cash back as city events cancelled

A number of events have been cancelled in Norwich including Comedy in the Park, Craig David and Jason Manford shows

A number of events have been cancelled in Norwich including Comedy in the Park, Craig David and Jason Manford shows - Credit: Archant

Furious gig-goers have been left short-changed after a string of city events were cancelled. 

Craig David, Katherine Ryan and Jason Manford were among the big names lined up to perform in Norwich. 

But promoters M&B Promotions and Easy Ticketing have told customers the events - which also includes Comedy in the Park planned for August - have been ditched.

Both companies have said the "extreme logistical and financial setbacks caused by the pandemic mean it’s no longer viable for us to continue trading".

And now folks are desperately trying to claw their money back - but so far many are being met with disconnected phonelines and unanswered emails.

Neil Reading, a spokesman for comedian Manford, confirmed the show scheduled for Epic Studios in Norwich on Tuesday next week had been cancelled because the promoter was no longer in business.

Comedian Jason Manford. Photo: Courtesy of Norwich Theatre Royal

Comedian Jason Manford. Photo: Courtesy of Norwich Theatre Royal - Credit: Courtesy of Norwich Theatre Royal

He said: "In this instance it was not part of Jason's own tour. It was a completely different promoter who had booked him. 

"Jason is obviously very disappointed not to do the shows and is hoping the promoters return all the monies to people who purchased tickets. 

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"Unfortunately it was entirely out of his hands as the promoters have gone bust and cancelled a good number of shows."

Laura Rycroft, general manager of Epic Studios, received an email from the promoters on Tuesday morning informing her the show had been cancelled.

"We along with Jason Manford’s management team have tried to find a way to save the show," she said.

"Despite best efforts we have been unable to do so at short notice due to M&B Promotions and Easy Ticketing holding both ticket holders' details and funds.

"The team at Epic Studios are deeply disappointed that the event has had to be cancelled and send our apologies to all that were looking forward to attending."

Laura Rycroft, general manager of Epic Studios in Norwich 

Laura Rycroft, general manager of Epic Studios in Norwich - Credit: Contributed

Ali and Adrian Pettitt, owners of Pettitt and Boo in Norwich, had spent £85.80 to see the comedian Katherine Ryan at Epic Studios.

The show was rescheduled from July due to Covid after a member of the line-up was pinged.

But now the event has been cancelled altogether with Mrs Pettitt among those chasing refunds without any joy.

Adrian and Ali Pettitt, who had tickets to see Katherine Ryan at Epic Studios

Adrian and Ali Pettitt, who had tickets to see Katherine Ryan at Epic Studios - Credit: Archant

She said: "My husband Adrian and I had been really looking forward to this.

"There have not been massive costs incurred but it is annoying nonetheless as we had been waiting for a year for that then kept getting ignored. 

"It could be an entirely legitimate administrative mistake but Covid has impacted us all. We are all in the same storm."

Katherine Ryan is heading to Norwich in 2021 Picture: Contributed by Note by Note Media

Katherine Ryan is heading to Norwich in 2021 Picture: Contributed by Note by Note Media - Credit: Archant

Megan Drewery, who works as a contact centre manager in Norwich, had tickets for both Craig David and Comedy in the Park in August through M&B Promotions.

She said: "I purchased the tickets at separate times not even knowing this was the same company.

"The insult of the email asks all the customers to contact PayPal for a refund, knowing for sure that PayPal only refund any disputes or cancels within 180 days." 

A statement by the promoters says: "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.

"We were amongst many high-profile event organisers forced to reschedule many events due to the Covid 19 pandemic.

"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."

Other cities across the UK have also been hit with similar cancellations. 

Despite the flurry of cancellations in the city, other prominent events are still on track to go ahead. 

A spokesman for Norwich City Football Club said The Killers gig at Carrow Road is still expected to take place in June after being postponed twice.

He added: "We always encourage rescheduling where possible and do not cancel events for no reason."