Published On: Mon, Dec 18th, 2023

Artist Sir Grayson Perry hit with ‘ridiculous’ £39,000 EDF Energy bill | UK News

Contemporary artist Sir Grayson Perry is among those venting their frustration at EDF Energy after he appeared to be billed £39,000 for his monthly electricity use.

He posted on X saying: “Hi @edfenergy, I’ve been trying to speak to someone to explain how my electricity bill went from £300 a month to £39,000.

“Your call centre has been no help, but you tried to direct debit this amount today from my account.”

**FILE ** View of the logo of Electricite de France, the French state-controlled utility, in Paris, in this Nov. 21, 2005 file photo. Shares of RWE AG soared more than 5.6 percent on Friday May, 11 2007 on a report that the German utility was being sized up for a takeover by France's Electricite de France. EDF said it had had "no contacts with German authorities" and declined to comment on media reports about plans to take over RWE .(Photo/Jacques Brinon)
EDF said unusual charges could occur due to ‘erroneous’ meter readings. Pic: AP

Broadcaster Jon Sopel complained about a similar “ridiculous” instance in response to the post.

The former BBC correspondent said: “Same has just happened to us. Ridiculous. We’ve now sorted. They wanted to raise ours from £152 to £18k. Wonder how many others have had this.”

Following the pair’s posts, a number of X users aired their concerns with some accusing EDF of charging them “an insane amount” and others claiming they were sent “threatening letters” and “bills more than a year after switching to another energy company”.

Jon Sopel attends Global's Make Some Noise charity gala at The Londoner Hotel, in Leicester Square, London. Picture date: Tuesday November 21, 2023. PA Photo. The Gala event raises money for Global's Make Some Noise charity to help disadvantaged children, young people and their families across the UK. See PA story SHOWBIZ Global. Photo credit should read: Jeff Moore/PA Wire
Ex-BBC correspondent Jon Sopel said he was also charged thousands in his latest bill

EDF apologised to complainants on social media and told Sky News Sir Grayson’s and Mr Sopel’s bill increases were “not related in any way” and that there was no wider issue with its billing system.

In a statement, EDF said: “Whilst we cannot discuss the specifics of the cases you refer to; we can confirm they are not related in any way.

“Customers do not need to worry – these are not related to a wider issue with our billing system and we’ve not made any changes to how we process direct debit changes for customers.

“Unusual changes to direct debit amounts can sometimes occur when there is an erroneous meter reading recorded on the system.

“We have robust interventions in place to ensure that any large increases in customers’ direct debits are verified through a human check and in almost all such cases, system errors are rectified and prevented, without customers being impacted.”

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Ofgem increase energy price cap

It comes amid growing concern about energy bills, with the regulator Ofgem announcing last month that the energy price cap would rise to an annual average of £1,928 from January – £94 more over the course of a year.

The increase, while widely expected, leaves households facing the prospect of further pressure on their finances in the new year.

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