Holiday attraction boss threatens to sue Met Office for loss of business over ‘needlessly pessimistic’ forecasts

October 3, 2012 | by | 0 Comments
Rick Turner at his sheep attraction in Devon

Rick Turner at his sheep attraction in Devon

The owner of a tourist attraction is threatening to sue the Met Office – for wrongly predicting the weather.

Fed-up Rick Turner says “needlessly pessimistic” predictions by climate experts are losing him business.

Rick claims the Met Office’s forecasts are overly bleak – which puts tourists off day trips in the UK.

He says negative weather forecasts – which are often wrong – drive customers abroad for foreign holidays.

Rick, who runs the Big Sheep family attraction in Bideford, Devon, say he is now considering taking legal action against the Met Office.

He says visitors tend to book last minute and are being put off by incorrect rain forecasts – and he wants compensation.

He said: “It can mean visitors book abroad instead.

”If The Met Office get it wrong next Easter, I’ll try and sue them.

“Somebody has to hold them to account.”

Mr Turner said false forecasts cost the industry millions in lost custom, and said he was “prepared to spend thousands on legal action”.

The Met Office HQ, which Mr Turner claims is encouraging British people to take holidays abroad by predicting rain too much

The Met Office HQ, which Mr Turner claims is encouraging British people to take holidays abroad by predicting rain too much

The Met Office defended its performance and says it cannot control the weather in a summer which has seen some of the wettest months on record.

Malcolm Bell, head of the tourism body VisitCornwall, said Mr Turner’s threat raised an important issue.

He said: ”It would be very helpful if people could know whether it’s going to rain for ten minutes that day, which would be less likely to put them off than seeing a blanket rain cloud which could mean a wash-out.”

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