Laughing couple run away from restaurant after racking up £100 bill

A couple ran away from a restaurant laughing after they racked up a £100 bill and left fake test and trace details.

The young man and woman were caught on CCTV as they left My Big Fat Taverna, in Clacton-on-Sea in Essex, without paying.

According to Vicki Hart, general manager of the Royal Hotel where the restaurant is located in the Essex town, said they ordered two T-bone steaks and a large number of cocktails before legging it.

‘They had eight cocktails between them and two T-bone steaks, totalling £100, but then they ran off straight after eating,’ she said.

‘It is so frustrating given the circumstances because we and so many other restaurants have worked so hard to get the business back up and running since coronavirus.

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‘So to then have people go against all our hard work is sad. But we now have new business measures in place to ensure this does not happen again.’

Despite a short, determined chase from Ms Hart, they escaped – but hopes someone might recognise the pair.

She told the Sun the couple were holidaymakers who gave fake names for test and trace.


She said the man had a ‘northern accent’ and the woman ‘sounded like she was from London’.

It is thought they had also tried to rip off nearby a Wetherspoons, the Moon and Starfish, with a similar scam.

Restaurant owner Jason Smedley said he was ‘fuming’ to be left out of pocket, particularly after the pandemic where the hotel helped house NHS workers.

‘I’m fuming – apparently they were first seen in the Moon and Starfish, but then decided to come over to us,’ he said.

‘They ran up a huge bill and even abused my staff. It’s rare but still makes you very angry.’

Local councillor Paul Honeywood slammed the couple for not thinking about the challenging circumstances facing the hospitality sector.

‘I was disappointed to hear about the behaviour of a couple who recently left My Big Fat Greek Taverna without paying.

‘Many of our local businesses are facing difficult times at the moment, through no fault of their own, and this kind of behaviour does not nothing to help any of those businesses or our great town.

‘I sincerely hope that the wrongdoers are caught.’

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