The WOW! Awards: Coleen Desmond

Southeastern Railway –

Having attempted to buy a car park ticket at Headcorn Station, my payment could not be accepted as I only had new £1 coins and the machine had not been modified to accept these. There was an alternative to pay on line within half an hour of arriving at the station so I took the telephone number and proceeded to phone through with payment immediately I alighted the train.

Unfortunately, a recorded message did not allow me to do this as I did not have the location number. I tried to contact Headcorn station to obtain this but you can only speak to National Rail, not a local station. It took three calls and 10 minutes each call to get through to them as I was disconnected on the journey due to poor signal. Eventually I got through only to be given the number for the Car Park company and so I proceeded to call them with the same delays and disconnections.

Upon reaching London, I still had not been able to pay for my ticket although I had a record of the calls on my phone. I couldn’t get through to the car park company until after my meeting by which time, the lady advised that there was no point in paying now as you will either have a fine or not. Upon arriving at Headcorn, I had a £100 fine! I went straight to the ticket desk and explained my situation and frustration to which Coleen proceeded to write to her manager on my behalf with this very detailed account.

It took her at least 15-20 minutes to help me and avoid me having to go through the very tedious process of appeal which rarely results in a positive outcome despite your genuine attempts to pay! The following morning, I received a letter from Coleen’s manager who had contacted the car park company and got the fine withdrawn. Coleen showed fantastic customer service, she listened, showed concern and fully understood my frustration. She immediately diffused the tension of my angst and set about resolving the situation.

I would like to put her forward for a ‘Wow’ Award in appreciation of exceptional service and connection with her customers.

Nominated By: Angela Foston
Nomination Date: 15 August 2017
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