We spoke, they told me (albeit with an actual apology this time) that no, they cannot re-conenct me to the internets (unless I want to sign up to a new contract, and even the Man from Tiscali didn't seriously expect that I would be willing to do that. )
So after a bit of to-ing and fro-ing, (in which it is possible thatI may have, um, accidentally let slip the fact that I am a lawyer and therefore do know what breach of contract means, and also that thismeans that I did read all of the small print and know that yes, they did breach the contract) they agreed to send be a smallish cheque by way of apology.
Having had some experience of them, I also asked them to let me have written confirmation that the account was clear and had been closed (as I have read of several people having their service ended but the account left open, and payments continuing to be taken.
That was last Wednesday.
I was very patient. I waited until yesterday (i.e. a full week after that agreement was reached) before chasing them up to enquire why I hadn't had the cheque, or the confirmation, and why they had tried to take another direct debit payment from my account. They didn't succeed in taking the Direct Debit because not having had a reply from them, and working on the basis that they
I have sent the guy in the complaints department a chasing e-mail and, having heard nothing, aslo managed to track down a phone number. I'm told he is off sick today and yestaerday (which doesn't really explain what he was doing for the other 4 working days since we spoke...)
So, we shall see.
On the plus side, my net connection should be in on Monday, so I am just keeping all available fingers and toes crossed that Virgin are a little more competent than their predecessors. Wish me Luck!