Man barred from Hilton Basingstoke after claiming he had "large snake in trousers"

Basingstoke Gazette: Hilton Basingstoke Buy this photo Hilton Basingstoke

AN IT worker has been banned from staying at a Basingstoke hotel for writing “There’s a large snake in my trousers” on a customer comment form.

Jason Payne stayed at Hilton Basingstoke, in Old Common Road, Black Dam, on Saturday, February 8, for a friend’s birthday.

The 35-year-old computer programmer, from London, booked his room using the booking.com website. On the comments section, he wrote: “There’s a large snake in my trousers. Hope that’s OK.”

He said hotel staff laughed when they read the comment when he checked into the hotel.

But on Tuesday last week, he received an email from Cathrin Wurst, the hotel’s front office manager, advising him staff would “not be able to accept any future bookings” from him.

She said the hotel was not willing to accept comments that put staff in an “uncomfortable situation” and added they were neither appropriate nor funny.

She told Mr Payne: “At reception, the team members are required to confirm any requests or comments the guests have made in their bookings, which means any comment you make will most definitely get read (out), and I cannot interpret putting a comment like this on to a booking in any other way than trying to embarrass the person who will read it.”

Mr Payne told The Gazette: “I think she’s a fuddy-duddy, taking really what was a puckish remark far too seriously, and she has no sense of humour.

“It was a joke. I have heard far worse said on CBBC and on TV shows like Loose Women and Jeremy Kyle. The only person who was ever going to see it was an adult, and they are exposed to far worse than ‘There’s a snake in my trousers’.”

He added he has posted the reply on the internet, on sites such as Twitter and Reddit, and sent an email to staff at the investment bank where he works with the hotel’s reply.

In a statement, the hotel chain confirmed the incident took place and said the decision was taken “at the discretion of the hotel team”.

The statement added: “Hilton Basingstoke continues to operate a legitimate pet-friendly policy, and the guest is welcome to check in at the many other properties in the Hilton Worldwide portfolio.”

Comments (12)

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1:29pm Thu 20 Feb 14

ParanoidAndroid says...

The sale of exotic pets should be banned. What was he doing taking a potentially-dangerou
s reptile somewhere where other people would be at risk. De he say whether it was a poisonous snake or whether it was a constrictor?
The sale of exotic pets should be banned. What was he doing taking a potentially-dangerou s reptile somewhere where other people would be at risk. De he say whether it was a poisonous snake or whether it was a constrictor? ParanoidAndroid
  • Score: 6

3:09pm Thu 20 Feb 14

JJ38JJ says...

Poor bloke. He books in to a hotel and because of their negligence and inability to control their reptiles he lodges a complaint which results in them declining his future custom. And the staff laughed at him when he tried to point out this potentially dangerous situation.
Poor bloke. He books in to a hotel and because of their negligence and inability to control their reptiles he lodges a complaint which results in them declining his future custom. And the staff laughed at him when he tried to point out this potentially dangerous situation. JJ38JJ
  • Score: 8

4:31pm Thu 20 Feb 14

ParanoidAndroid says...

And was there a sign saying "Please leave all snakes at the reception desk"? I bet there wasn't.
And was there a sign saying "Please leave all snakes at the reception desk"? I bet there wasn't. ParanoidAndroid
  • Score: 3

8:11pm Thu 20 Feb 14

PinPinPoola says...

The Hilton is a dive that needs to be demolished and be done with.!! I stayed their once and it was a nasty experience - never again..!

I now stay at the Apollo or Holiday Inn... Both are really nice and have friendly staff that you can have a good bit of banter with..!

The Hilton manager needs to lighten up and put things in perspective - there are much much worse things going on in the world today.!!
The Hilton is a dive that needs to be demolished and be done with.!! I stayed their once and it was a nasty experience - never again..! I now stay at the Apollo or Holiday Inn... Both are really nice and have friendly staff that you can have a good bit of banter with..! The Hilton manager needs to lighten up and put things in perspective - there are much much worse things going on in the world today.!! PinPinPoola
  • Score: 10

9:51pm Thu 20 Feb 14

JoanBarcelona says...

A snake in February in Britain would be really quiet
A snake in February in Britain would be really quiet JoanBarcelona
  • Score: 5

5:08pm Mon 24 Feb 14

mynameissunshine says...

Dear Chris Gregory,

I fully agree with Ms. Wurst's statement that by putting this kind of comment on an online form, it is only designed to embarrass the staff member who has to read it and is borderline sexual harassment. For this reason I do not think that it is acceptable that The Gazette have chosen too only report this 'story' from the viewpoint of Mr. Payne in this situation.

Following this article being available online, it has been republished on various facebook sites and also Twitter (once by yourself) encouraging lots of horrible comments about the Front Office Manager. I urge to you have a look for yourself and see if you find them acceptable.

I feel that it was a very bad decision to publish Ms. Wurst's name in your article and an even worse decision to inflate Mr. Payne's ego in this way thinking he can get away with saying what he likes about and to anyone he chooses - be that on Twitter or when checking into a hotel (which is a workplace to many).

I hope that you will think about this, and perhaps publish a new article on the effects that cyber-bulling have and the media's responsibility with regards to this.

Thank you
Dear Chris Gregory, I fully agree with Ms. Wurst's statement that by putting this kind of comment on an online form, it is only designed to embarrass the staff member who has to read it and is borderline sexual harassment. For this reason I do not think that it is acceptable that The Gazette have chosen too only report this 'story' from the viewpoint of Mr. Payne in this situation. Following this article being available online, it has been republished on various facebook sites and also Twitter (once by yourself) encouraging lots of horrible comments about the Front Office Manager. I urge to you have a look for yourself and see if you find them acceptable. I feel that it was a very bad decision to publish Ms. Wurst's name in your article and an even worse decision to inflate Mr. Payne's ego in this way thinking he can get away with saying what he likes about and to anyone he chooses - be that on Twitter or when checking into a hotel (which is a workplace to many). I hope that you will think about this, and perhaps publish a new article on the effects that cyber-bulling have and the media's responsibility with regards to this. Thank you mynameissunshine
  • Score: -7

12:20am Tue 25 Feb 14

BasingstokeCouncilSuck says...

mynameissunshine wrote:
Dear Chris Gregory,

I fully agree with Ms. Wurst's statement that by putting this kind of comment on an online form, it is only designed to embarrass the staff member who has to read it and is borderline sexual harassment. For this reason I do not think that it is acceptable that The Gazette have chosen too only report this 'story' from the viewpoint of Mr. Payne in this situation.

Following this article being available online, it has been republished on various facebook sites and also Twitter (once by yourself) encouraging lots of horrible comments about the Front Office Manager. I urge to you have a look for yourself and see if you find them acceptable.

I feel that it was a very bad decision to publish Ms. Wurst's name in your article and an even worse decision to inflate Mr. Payne's ego in this way thinking he can get away with saying what he likes about and to anyone he chooses - be that on Twitter or when checking into a hotel (which is a workplace to many).

I hope that you will think about this, and perhaps publish a new article on the effects that cyber-bulling have and the media's responsibility with regards to this.

Thank you
Cathrin Wurst? Is that name for real? (wurst being German for sausage!)
[quote][p][bold]mynameissunshine[/bold] wrote: Dear Chris Gregory, I fully agree with Ms. Wurst's statement that by putting this kind of comment on an online form, it is only designed to embarrass the staff member who has to read it and is borderline sexual harassment. For this reason I do not think that it is acceptable that The Gazette have chosen too only report this 'story' from the viewpoint of Mr. Payne in this situation. Following this article being available online, it has been republished on various facebook sites and also Twitter (once by yourself) encouraging lots of horrible comments about the Front Office Manager. I urge to you have a look for yourself and see if you find them acceptable. I feel that it was a very bad decision to publish Ms. Wurst's name in your article and an even worse decision to inflate Mr. Payne's ego in this way thinking he can get away with saying what he likes about and to anyone he chooses - be that on Twitter or when checking into a hotel (which is a workplace to many). I hope that you will think about this, and perhaps publish a new article on the effects that cyber-bulling have and the media's responsibility with regards to this. Thank you[/p][/quote]Cathrin Wurst? Is that name for real? (wurst being German for sausage!) BasingstokeCouncilSuck
  • Score: -3

8:57am Tue 25 Feb 14

Folkestone Saint says...

mynameissunshine wrote:
Dear Chris Gregory,

I fully agree with Ms. Wurst's statement that by putting this kind of comment on an online form, it is only designed to embarrass the staff member who has to read it and is borderline sexual harassment. For this reason I do not think that it is acceptable that The Gazette have chosen too only report this 'story' from the viewpoint of Mr. Payne in this situation.

Following this article being available online, it has been republished on various facebook sites and also Twitter (once by yourself) encouraging lots of horrible comments about the Front Office Manager. I urge to you have a look for yourself and see if you find them acceptable.

I feel that it was a very bad decision to publish Ms. Wurst's name in your article and an even worse decision to inflate Mr. Payne's ego in this way thinking he can get away with saying what he likes about and to anyone he chooses - be that on Twitter or when checking into a hotel (which is a workplace to many).


I hope that you will think about this, and perhaps publish a new article on the effects that cyber-bulling have and the media's responsibility with regards to this.

Thank you
I agree with most of what you say, but I think he belittles himself with the comment as he obviously has a small mind, I also think it shows the contempt he has for others for what he probably thinks are lower than him, and that is bullying, looking at him he was most likely a victim at school so is trying to take his revenge on society now.
[quote][p][bold]mynameissunshine[/bold] wrote: Dear Chris Gregory, I fully agree with Ms. Wurst's statement that by putting this kind of comment on an online form, it is only designed to embarrass the staff member who has to read it and is borderline sexual harassment. For this reason I do not think that it is acceptable that The Gazette have chosen too only report this 'story' from the viewpoint of Mr. Payne in this situation. Following this article being available online, it has been republished on various facebook sites and also Twitter (once by yourself) encouraging lots of horrible comments about the Front Office Manager. I urge to you have a look for yourself and see if you find them acceptable. I feel that it was a very bad decision to publish Ms. Wurst's name in your article and an even worse decision to inflate Mr. Payne's ego in this way thinking he can get away with saying what he likes about and to anyone he chooses - be that on Twitter or when checking into a hotel (which is a workplace to many). I hope that you will think about this, and perhaps publish a new article on the effects that cyber-bulling have and the media's responsibility with regards to this. Thank you[/p][/quote]I agree with most of what you say, but I think he belittles himself with the comment as he obviously has a small mind, I also think it shows the contempt he has for others for what he probably thinks are lower than him, and that is bullying, looking at him he was most likely a victim at school so is trying to take his revenge on society now. Folkestone Saint
  • Score: -1

9:43am Tue 25 Feb 14

Ding says...

This guy sounds like a cross between Alan Partridge and David Brent. Quite why Jason Payne wants to publicise how toe-curlingly cringeworthy he is, is beyond me.
This guy sounds like a cross between Alan Partridge and David Brent. Quite why Jason Payne wants to publicise how toe-curlingly cringeworthy he is, is beyond me. Ding
  • Score: 4

10:37am Tue 25 Feb 14

laurence86 says...

I believe that the adult thing to do in this situation would be to simply ignore the childish comment. To suggest that a silly comment on a feedback form is akin to sexual harassment is an insult to genuine victims of sexual predators. The Hilton chain has dramatically lost its ability to provide an excellent service over the last decade and seems to be purely relying on its name to keep business turning over. Tripadvisor rank #9 of 11 hotels in Basingstoke suggest to me that they may want to work on their customer care a bit more.

http://www.tripadvis
or.com/Hotels-g18705
4-Basingstoke_Hampsh
ire_England-Hotels.h
tml
I believe that the adult thing to do in this situation would be to simply ignore the childish comment. To suggest that a silly comment on a feedback form is akin to sexual harassment is an insult to genuine victims of sexual predators. The Hilton chain has dramatically lost its ability to provide an excellent service over the last decade and seems to be purely relying on its name to keep business turning over. Tripadvisor rank #9 of 11 hotels in Basingstoke suggest to me that they may want to work on their customer care a bit more. http://www.tripadvis or.com/Hotels-g18705 4-Basingstoke_Hampsh ire_England-Hotels.h tml laurence86
  • Score: 5

1:03pm Tue 25 Feb 14

Mrs G of bstoke says...

I can actually see the funny side of it and if I had been the member of staff that read it, probably would have stifled a laugh, blushed a bit and then thought nothing more. I fail to see how that is sexual harassment!? I doubt the staff member is scarred for life and needs counselling like genuine victims of sexual harassment. Surely if the comment had said something like "I have a snake in my trousers and I want to get it out and show it to you right now" or I have a snake in my boxer shorts".....THAT would be another matter all together and would have freaked me out and yes, take it further with the Manager.

People sometimes refer to Justin Timberlake "Justin Trousersnake" as a joke but that's not classed as sexually harassing him and to my knowledge he has never pressed charges. When Woody from Toy Story say "I have a snake in my boots" it did not cause a wave of complaints about sexual harassment and probably would not have been misconstrued by the staff at the Hilton. Perhaps people need to let themselves laugh at things now and again instead of jumping on a band wagon of complaints!
Have a lovely day everyone! Keep smiling.
I can actually see the funny side of it and if I had been the member of staff that read it, probably would have stifled a laugh, blushed a bit and then thought nothing more. I fail to see how that is sexual harassment!? I doubt the staff member is scarred for life and needs counselling like genuine victims of sexual harassment. Surely if the comment had said something like "I have a snake in my trousers and I want to get it out and show it to you right now" or I have a snake in my boxer shorts".....THAT would be another matter all together and would have freaked me out and yes, take it further with the Manager. People sometimes refer to Justin Timberlake "Justin Trousersnake" as a joke but that's not classed as sexually harassing him and to my knowledge he has never pressed charges. When Woody from Toy Story say "I have a snake in my boots" it did not cause a wave of complaints about sexual harassment and probably would not have been misconstrued by the staff at the Hilton. Perhaps people need to let themselves laugh at things now and again instead of jumping on a band wagon of complaints! Have a lovely day everyone! Keep smiling. Mrs G of bstoke
  • Score: 0

3:39pm Tue 25 Feb 14

mynameissunshine says...

Hi all,

I read your comments with interest and agree that the comment does not compere to victims of crimes of a sexual nature.

Obviously staff members were made to feel uncomfortable by this comment, or Mr. Payne would not have been asked not to return to the venue.

What makes me angry (and why I felt the need to post underneath rather than ignoring) is the abuse that the staff member has received following this publication by members of the public and by Mr. Payne and feel that this has been aided by publicising the managers name and job title.
Hi all, I read your comments with interest and agree that the comment does not compere to victims of crimes of a sexual nature. Obviously staff members were made to feel uncomfortable by this comment, or Mr. Payne would not have been asked not to return to the venue. What makes me angry (and why I felt the need to post underneath rather than ignoring) is the abuse that the staff member has received following this publication by members of the public and by Mr. Payne and feel that this has been aided by publicising the managers name and job title. mynameissunshine
  • Score: -2

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