Lapland New Forest Scam. How to get money back...



  • mark_rose
    mark_rose Forumite Posts: 2 Newbie
    We to went yesterday 29th and it is the biggest rip off since the poll tax.

    You are told that you would be greeted by one of Santa’s helpers NOT TRUE.

    There is a 3 minute walk through the woods with all snow on the trees (well a few Christmas trees with lights on). Wow there is a plastic polar bear in the woods and a wall this a painting on 300 yards away. To your right there is a muddy dog pen with a number of howling huskies in.

    I know we will have a quick walk around to see what’s here then go ice skating. Well the walk around took 10 minutes, most of it was food wagons, like you would get at a fair. There were a few animals dotted around, a big rabbit in a cage, 2 reindeers, a few geese, 3 piglets and pen with some turkeys in.

    Well that was the walk around so lets go ice skating kids…… have to go back outside into the fair ground for this and guess what it was broken and was told it wouldn’t be working till about 9pm, great. Well kids lets go and see Santa and his grotto.

    We queued for 3/4 of an hour and only got about 1/3 way into the queue. To calm the now furious queue, they decided to bring out Santa number 2. We then got told if you didn't want a photo (for the sum of £10 for 1 child or £15 for 2) then you could not let your child go up to Santa (this was Santa in the grotto), you had to wave to him from outside the grotto. They then told us we have 2 options, option number 1 was stay in the queue and wave to Santa (because I wasn’t paying another £15 for a photo), or option number 2 was to have a little box given to the children and they could swap it for a gift in one of the two shops. By this time, most of the young children in the queue were crying because of cold and boredom. As we didn’t want to spend another hour or so in the queue just to wave at a man in a red suite we went for option 2. His little helpers then gave out these “little boxes” to swap for a present, in the shops. Off we went to the shops, so no Santa and no grotto.

    The shops were two sheds, one for boys and one for girls. As you can imagine, with something like Lapland there would be a lot of people there (especially as there was nothing else to do). It was like a give away food sale in a third world country. You stood in the shed (with your young child) shoulder to shoulder to get a cuddly toy or a racing car for the boys or for the girls a cuddly toy or a plastic bus. Fairs, fair, there were other toys of the same tacky theme (all the toys you could have got at any cheap shop for about £2 - £5), but as the crushing queue was getting bigger, we had to get out.

    We were freezing by now and wet through, so a nice warming drink and a mince pie or for little Eddie a doughnut. Three hot chocolates, 1 mince pie (more the size of a biscuit) and a doughnut came to just under £8……….me I splashed out on a nice cup of warm mulled wine, £2.50. Me and Donna stayed there for about 30 minuets sipping hot chocolate or mulled wine while the two young ones played in the snow that was coming out of the snow machine, until little Eddie started to say he wanted to go home. So of we set of for home, what was advertised as a 4 to 6 hour stay was in reality a 1 to 2 hour stay, and most of that in a queue.

    Taking religion away from this time of year, Christmas is a time for children and meant to be an exciting happy time and this experience has just destroyed it. In a time of a depression when everyone is tightening their belts, the organisers should be sued. I wish I had spent the £100 on other things.

    Please please please save your hard earned money
  • LesleyAnn_2
    LesleyAnn_2 Forumite Posts: 3 Newbie
    We have visited the so called magical wonderland today, and are completely disgusted. We cannot believe the false advertising that has happened to entice people to this complete farce. It was shabby, tacky and there was nothing magical about it at all. It cost us as a family of 5 £125.00 for our kids to leave in tears after an hour. And we were one of the 'fortunate' families that queued to see father christmas as soon as we arrived, only queueing for about 40 minutes which for us was far too long. When we left and saw the queue still waiting it was horrendous. So for our total hour that was spent there, 40 minutes was queueing to see the rip off that was father christmas. They did not allow you to take your own photos as they were charging ten pounds per photo, obviously my partner was not having that and we took our photos anyway, besides was an 18 year old dressed as an elf going to stop us? The staff were almost non-existant, there was no elf showing you around the site........not that that was necessary as it was so ridiculously small and there was really nothing to show you around. The B & Q huts, or log cabins as advertised, were rammed with people trying to get some shelter from the weather. I know the weather could not be helped, but there were absolutely no provisions for anyone to eat drink or sit down and try and warm up for a bit. There was a large 'gazebo' that everyone was huddled under, but it was a very sick joke. The food, we didnt touch because after the money we had spent on the day, there was no way we were prepared to pay 5.00 for a kids nuggets meal from a greasy snack bar. So what did we get for our 25.00.............cold, wet, miserable, and a cheap bit of plastic memorabilia from santa to chuck in the bin when we got home. Please dont go........this is no exageration it was awful. I have apologised to my kids over and over again for building up there hopes for this magical day that was part of their christmas present, and to see my 3 year old in tears after just an hour wanting to go home was the icing on the cake. Can anyone advise about refunds as we just cant believe how bad it was.
  • Baby_J_2
    Baby_J_2 Forumite Posts: 637 Forumite
    We have tickets for the 6th of December...we are so gutted by the reviews.
  • alison6692
    alison6692 Forumite Posts: 2,533 Forumite
    Okay well our tickets are booked for the 21st December so we have a bit of time to get our refund. I have tried ringing today but the line was constantly engaged.

    I also tried to contact my credit card company but the desputes department is only open during the week.

    We will be asking for a refund as we have spent a whopping £270 on tickets.

    I can see this is going to be a nightmare. I am going to send the link for this thread to Southampton Daily Echo who have been featuring advertising for this place.

    I will let you know if they wish to cover the story for us.

    Alison x
    :heart2:Mum to my little Daisy 3 and Archie 1.:heart2:
  • nigel1969_2
    nigel1969_2 Forumite Posts: 3 Newbie

    I have written e-mails to the Southern Daily Echo, BBC News and Meridian ITV. I will also be contacting Sarah-Jane Bungay of South Today, since she has taken an interest in this. Anyone contacted Radio Solent yet?

    I didn't think this could get any worse, but reading the new posts today, words fail me.......

    I have e-mailed the site directly demanding a refund and telling them I will contact Trading Standards if they don't respond by 5pm tomorrow. I suggest everybody else does the same, as I think that you may not be able to lodge a complaint with Trading Standards until you have contacted the "trader" directly for a refund. Someone please correct me if I'm wrong on this point.

    Hopefully, with the media on board, we stand some chance of getting our money back, and putting these FRAUDSTERS out of business, or better still, behind bars!!! :mad:
  • libbifee
    libbifee Forumite Posts: 4 Newbie
    I had a phonecall from the Daily Echo today after I had emailed them about my terrible day out. I gave them a description of how terrible it was and they said they are going to be covering it in tomorrow's paper. So watch this space! :T
  • NickiJ_3
    NickiJ_3 Forumite Posts: 1 Newbie
    We too have just got home from Lapland New Forest and feel as gutted and ripped off as everyone else. Every single negative comment posted is true. These organisers have been very very clever in marketing this scam - hundreds and hundreds of us have been sucked into it.

    I just want to say thanks to Mamma Bling for taking this further and making me chuckle after such a dreadful day.

    We did overhear a couple of the fairground staff talking in hushed tones as we left that Trading Standards had visited and there was talk of closing the event down. Here's hoping!
  • cjb1205
    cjb1205 Forumite Posts: 2 Newbie
    Hi,Ive paid £100 for us to take our daughter for her 3rd irthday on the 3rd dec.And now ive seen all this im really worried, do you have any pictures? I just phoned them a minute ago and the man that answered just said yeah there has been alot of complaints when i rang and gave me another number to phone, and that was that!
  • Baby_J_2
    Baby_J_2 Forumite Posts: 637 Forumite
    cjb1205 wrote: »
    Hi,Ive paid £100 for us to take our daughter for her 3rd irthday on the 3rd dec.And now ive seen all this im really worried, do you have any pictures? I just phoned them a minute ago and the man that answered just said yeah there has been alot of complaints when i rang and gave me another number to phone, and that was that!

    Can you post the number on here? We have tickets for the 6th of December!
  • libbifee
    libbifee Forumite Posts: 4 Newbie
    cjb1205 wrote: »
    Hi,Ive paid £100 for us to take our daughter for her 3rd irthday on the 3rd dec.And now ive seen all this im really worried, do you have any pictures? I just phoned them a minute ago and the man that answered just said yeah there has been alot of complaints when i rang and gave me another number to phone, and that was that!

    There's another forum that's got lots of bad reviews on the New Forest Lapland, and some good pics taken!
This discussion has been closed.
Meet your Ambassadors


  • All Categories
  • 338.8K Banking & Borrowing
  • 248.6K Reduce Debt & Boost Income
  • 447.5K Spending & Discounts
  • 230.7K Work, Benefits & Business
  • 600.7K Mortgages, Homes & Bills
  • 171K Life & Family
  • 243.9K Travel & Transport
  • 1.5M Hobbies & Leisure
  • 15.9K Discuss & Feedback
  • 15.1K Coronavirus Support Boards