The city’s iconic Grand Hotel is currently partly used as temporary accommodation for families fleeing the Taliban.
However, it has been overwhelmed by complaints from TripAdvisor guests of “uncontrollable refugee children”, while a flurry of one-star reviews currently rated it as the worst hotel in the resort town.
Read more: Woman who made Staffordshire Bull Terriers suffer sobs as 15-year ban on keeping animals is lifted
That turned out to be too much for the two middle-aged friends for Billingham, who are planning a weekend getaway later this month.
They contacted National Holidays to request a change of location – only to be told no.
“Our concern is safety and leaving things in our room, because of what we read about the theft and the kids going wild,” said one of the two women, who asked to keep anonymity.
“We’re not racist in any way – I’ve worked with refugees, and it’s not their fault. It’s just the situation they’re in.
“I totally agree that they should have left the country, but my concern is that the company has not informed us of what the Grand Hotel is doing. “
They claim that by contacting the company they were effectively told they ‘wouldn’t get a dime back’ of their £ 169 as the booking had no cancellation policy.
They further claimed that they had been told they could “present evidence” that the hotel was being used to house refugees, but that any complaints could only be dealt with AFTER their break.
“They basically say if we get to the hotel and feel unsafe then that’s our problem – but it’s their problem because they should have warned us,” said the woman, who claims to have only found out about other guests on social media.
“As a customer, they should let all paying customers know what’s going on there.
Their concerns about the venue were only heightened this week when the venue found itself at the center of a bomb hoax, in which guests were evacuated as police stormed the area.
Monday’s hoax, along with anti-refugee leaflets posted in the city, was later described as “reprehensible” by local councilor David Chance, who said it was a method designed to “undermine” efforts. aimed at helping families.
And defending the hotel’s temporary tenants, he told Examiner Live: “If you go on vacation, you will always have a little fuss. there is no doubt. Our children abroad can be just as bad. I have experienced it myself.
“My point of view is that we should help them as much as we can and I find it reprehensible that people try to undermine them.
“The same people who are trying to have a problem probably won’t have done much for our armed forces. “
Around 200 refugees are said to be staying in hotels in Scarborough, including the 158-year-old Victorian venue, which is owned by Britannia Hotels.
They were among thousands of people flown to Britain earlier this year in the wake of the Taliban’s resurgence, in one of the largest evacuation operations ever.
A National Holidays spokesperson said, “We appreciate (the guests) sharing their concerns with us and understand that news cycles during difficult times can cause increased worry and confusion.
“However, please rest assured that we are in constant contact with the hotel, which has been operating normally and has been welcoming National Holiday guests for many years. “
However, for the two potential guests, if they admit that there was no cancellation policy in place when the trip was booked – given the circumstances – they argue that the goalposts have changed significantly since and that the company should make an exception.
“Again, not to be racist, but we feel quite threatened. There were thefts in the hotel, damage in the hotel, broken locks and things that were missing.
“We’re here for three nights, do we really want to leave stuff there and then come back and find out it’s gone,” the woman added.
‘We only paid £ 169, but it’s £ 169 each – not to sit in a hotel full of refugees and kids going wild and your room broken into – and (the company) n has nothing to do with it other than shrugging and saying harsh. “
And she added, “To me, I feel like we’re being held hostage, in the sense of whether we’re going or not, but anyway, we’re not getting our money back. “
North Yorkshire Police have been approached for further comments regarding the theft allegations.
To subscribe to the Teesside Live short updates, click here