The Knucklehead of the Day award

Today’s winner is Metro Hotel, in Woking, Surrey. They get the award for the following

A hotel that refused a wounded soldier a room, forcing him to spend the night in his car, was backed into a “grovelling” apology yesterday after receiving a barrage of abusive phone calls.

Metro Hotel, in Woking, Surrey, had to call in the police as their lines were flooded with angry, abusive and threatening calls from members of the public.

The attack on the switchboards came after it emerged that Corporal Tomos Stringer, 24, had been told by hotel staff that it was company policy not to accept members of the Armed Forces as guests.

A soldier since the age of 16 and veteran of multiple tours in Northern Ireland, Iraq and Afghanistan, Cpl Stringer had travelled to Surrey to help with funeral preparations for a friend killed in action.

Cpl Stringer, who was not in uniform, presented his army warrant card when asked by the hotel for proof of identity. After the receptionist refused him a room, he was left with no choice but to bed down in his tiny, two-door car, his wrist, broken during a convoy ambush, cased in plaster.

The hotel later issued a lame apology.

“The Metro Hotel, Woking, sincerely regrets any upset caused towards Corporal Stringer and his family,” it said. “The hotel management has always had an open door policy to all its visitors and guests, including members of the military and Armed Forces.”

The receptionist on duty at the time had made a mistake, the statement added.

A personal letter received by Mr Williams, MP for Caernarfon, went further, saying that the hotel had recently experienced “some rather serious incidents” involving soldiers from the nearby barracks.

Michael Chaussy, the manager of Metro Hotel, insisted that there was no blanket policy, but that it was “a decision for the manager to assess whether the hotel booking is to be accepted”.

“This process does not appear to have happened in this case,” he conceded.

That’s one sorry ass apology. I have no trouble naming the Metro Hotel, in Woking, Surrey today’s Knucklehead of the Day.

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