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Priest challenges large company over small car

08 May 2015

SHARI VARL/BBC YOU AND YOURS

Jammed in and hacked off: the Hancocks in front of a Peugot 107 Micro

Jammed in and hacked off: the Hancocks in front of a Peugot 107 Micro

A PRIEST from Wiltshire has proved that four into 107 won't go, and thus compelled Britain's biggest tour operator to make a sizeable donation to charity.

When the Vicar of Shrivenham and Ashbury, Canon Richard Hancock, checked the free car-hire details for his Thomson family holiday in Malaga, he discovered that the promised five-door Ford Fusion would actually be a Peugeot 107 Micro.

For a car big enough to accommodate his six-foot-two-inch frame, his wife, Kate, their sons Alex, aged 16, and Ben, 13, plus baggage, it would cost £170 extra.

Canon Hancock challenged Thomson to fit them safely in a 107, promising to donate the upgrade fee to charity if it worked. If not, Thomson should give £170 to charity, and upgrade their car.

Last week, helped by BBC Radio 4's consumer programme You and Yours, the Hancocks took on the challenge. Things soon got very tight, even with luggage weighing half the 80-kilo flight allowance. Canon Hancock found his legs jammed under the steering wheel with his seat pushed forward, as Alex crammed in behind with a suitcase on his knees. Another case was wedged between the boys.

Thomson did not take up the invitation to attend, but have upgraded the car and donated £170 to the Nepal earthquake disaster fund.

Canon Hancock said: "I wasn't expecting a limousine, but if you book a family holiday, it should be a car able to transport a family."

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