TWO teenagers fear they could be victims of a Leeds Festival ticket scam.
Tom Alston, 18, and Louis Thelier, 17, from Holmfirth, paid more than £300 in April for two tickets for the event at Bramham Park, which starts today, from unofficial festival website www.leedsfestival.net
But just five days before the festival, Tom, a student at Greenhead College, received an email saying his tickets could not be sent and he would be sent a refund.
Despite Tom’s pleas to pick up the tickets on the day the company insisted this was impossible.
Both lads had spent their summer holidays working to pay for the popular festival headlined by bands Metallica, Rage Against The Machine, and The Killers.
In an email, www.leedsfestival.net suggested Tom and Louis, a pupil at Huddersfield Technical College, seek tickets from “independent” sellers and auction sites.
So far the pair have not received any refund.
Tom said: “I’m really disappointed and annoyed because we had a contract with them and they didn’t stick to it.
“It was going to be our first festival and we were really looking forward to it.”
Tom’s mum Carolyn added: “Going to a festival for the first time is a rite of passage for teenagers. They were looking forward to it all summer. The company hasn’t even given a reason why.”
West Yorkshire Trading Standards (WYTS) say Tom and Louis aren’t the only ones to be ripped off.
WYTS says it has received several complaints about the website from customers who are yet to get their tickets. Trading Standards added some of the money paid seems to have been paid into a bank account in Hungary.
Andrew Bibby, principal Trading Standards Officer for West Yorkshire said: “We would advise if your buy things online you use a website with proper contact details such as a landline phone number and a geographical address, not just a PO Box.
Mr Bibby added transactions of more than £100 on credit cards may be refundable by the card company.
Festival Republic Music, the organiser of Leeds and Reading Festivals, said www.leedsfestival.net was in no way affiliated with them.
A spokeswoman for Festival Republic said: “It’s always been a problem and now its in the form of viral touting. Anyone can replicate what looks like an official site.
“We work all year round hand in hand with the rest of the industry to combat these situations. It’s well documented that the industry has been in discussions with the Government about secondary ticketing and touting and the government’s report was published in January of this year.
“We do all we can to publicise both the authorised agents and warn against buying from unofficial sources using our website, web forums, press etc, but cannot possibly prevent individuals visiting and purchasing from sites like these that appear without warning – and usually disappear without warning too.”