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Cheal Watches: Is this Fraud or a Crime? Advice Please


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Hello,

Another horror story about Cheal Watches, I'm afraid.  My husband bought me a £4000 Girard Perregaux gold and diamond 1935 17 jewel cocktail watch as a 10th wedding anniversary gift. I had it valued for insurance purposes, which included the valuer verifying it was in fact a genuine 1935 GP movement (I have documentary evidence). Although it ran well, I decided to get it serviced by Cheal watches who took several months to send it back and it has never run right since. That was about a year ago.

Anyway, by chance last week I discovered that a very well regarded watch repairer lived just10 minutes' walk from my house and so I asked him to take a look at my watch to see if he could improve its performance. I took it down to him yesterday and he phoned me today, after opening the watch, to tell me that the original GP movement is completely missing and has been replaced with a modern Rotary movement which hadn't itself been serviced and was bone dry - hence the bad running. Basically Cheal Watches has taken (stolen?) the original GP movement without asking or informing me and has replaced it with a far inferior modern one, essentially ruining my watch in the process - and severely affecting its value.

I am still reeling from this news and would be grateful to anyone on the forum as to any advice as to what I can do about this. The watch was of huge sentimental value and I am heart broken - as well as spitting mad.

Advice please?

 

 

 

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Why have you joined this forum without an introduction and made this your first post without showing any evidence. Do you have pictures/proof of the watch with the movement in place before you sent it for repair ? Based on what you have posted, if i was in your position I would suggest you contact a solicitor and take legal advice. I assume you have already contacted the the watchmaker regarding the problem and given them the opportunity to reply.

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Go back to Cheal watches whoever they are, with proof of the transaction, and demand they put matters right to your satisfaction.

Trading standards might be interested.  My wife had the opposite problem, I paid for a new movement and they never replaced it, just fiddled with the old one.  A visit to IVOR DOBLE, Exeter with a cheque stub provided by my accountant was all it required.

Good luck.

Edited by RWP
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Try Trading Standards first, unlike your solicitor they are free and might do something.  If not, sue yourself.  Your obvious claim is for damages for the tort of conversion (taking your original GP movement), or breach of contract (in replacing rather than servicing the watch) equal to the cost to replace the watch, plus whatever other costs you incur (e.g. the abortive second service), train fares, etc. and modest compensation for loss of what should be a special item that cannot simply be replaced.  You can do it all online through the County Court and represent yourself when you get there, but keep all correspondence and documents.  Any solicitor worth having would charge you more to handle the claim than you are likely to get back, and lawyers fees aren't generally recoverable in a case like this so you would be left out of pocket.  The system is designed for people to bring their own claims, and you will end up round the table with a judge who decides. The big thing is to check whom you contracted with - 'Cheal Watches' is not a legal entity, you will likely find it is either a sole trader trading as Cheal Watches or a limited company. I think it is probably the infamous Chris Heal. 

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If it was me I'd be knocking his door down demanding answers, but is this not good old fashioned theft and therefore a police matter?

The butcher of Rye strikes again. The man is ill and needs a diet of porridge to set him right. 

 

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3 minutes ago, it'salivejim said:

If it was me I'd be knocking his door down demanding answers, but is this not good old fashioned theft and therefore a police matter?

 

 

Unfortunately in a case like this proof is the most important thing. It would be most interesting to see a picture of the watch with the case back removed to see the bodged repair as a warning to others what to look out for. 

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2 minutes ago, WRENCH said:

Unfortunately in a case like this proof is the most important thing. It would be most interesting to see a picture of the watch with the case back removed to see the bodged repair as a warning to others what to look out for. 

Referring to your first post, who takes pictures of the movement before sending it for a service? Seriously?

You're assuming that most people have the wherewithal to remove a case back, never mind think about taking pics as proof, you know, just in case the repairer switches the movements. 

Why do you think the OP is lying? Chealwatch is not known as the butcher of Rye for nothing.

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11 minutes ago, JonnyOldBoy said:

This is a no brainer. OP.... you need to contact the police and report a theft. 

What he said, I don't know why this is even up for discussion.  I assume you have the paperwork for the watch service and the other guy documenting what he found?

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12 minutes ago, it'salivejim said:

Why do you think the OP is lying? Chealwatch is not known as the butcher of Rye for nothing.

 

20 minutes ago, it'salivejim said:

Referring to your first post, who takes pictures of the movement before sending it for a service? Seriously?

You're assuming that most people have the wherewithal to remove a case back, never mind think about taking pics as proof, you know, just in case the repairer switches the movements. 

Why do you think the OP is lying? Chealwatch is not known as the butcher of Rye for nothing.

OK. The original valuer will be able to provide proof that the watch had the correct movement. The Jeweller who now has the watch will have had the case back off, which can be removed again and photographed as proof that it now has a different movement fitted. I certainly would obtain this information if it was my watch. The big problem is that a year has passed between the service and the discovery.

I am fully aware of the reputation of the "watchmaker" in question and have seen the result of his work first hand, going back several years, and a lot of people hold grudges against him, but the court is where this should be handled.

 

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So it's been to two watchmakers now and a valuer and somewhere along the way the original movement has vamoosed.

Call me an old cynic again but three people have had their hands on it as well as the op so I think I'd be wanting to see a bit of documentation and maybe pics before I lit my torch and dug out my pitch fork.

 

:whistle:

:biggrin:

 

 

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  • 2 years later...

I only picked up this post recently and I assume the repair was for a customer in the South of England who I will not name for legal reasons but looking into the details I can that this repair entailed the customer supply the replacement movement as the original rusted movement had proven unreliable. Had the customer go back to us with a complaint instead of posting on this forum we could have settle the matter .

chealwatch ltd does not exchange movement type during repairs unless agreed with the customer and often if a watch movement is beyond repair we will return the watch undone.

I am not a fan of these type of forums as anyone can say what they like be it true or false.

Chris Heal chealwatch ltd 

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Where's the popcorn emoji things are about to get heated! :rltrlt:

4 minutes ago, Craftycockney said:

Where's the popcorn emoji things are about to get heated! :rltrlt:

Hang I just seen this was way back in 2017 bloody hell old news or what. 

25 minutes ago, chealwatch said:

I only picked up this post recently and I assume the repair was for a customer in the South of England who I will not name for legal reasons but looking into the details I can that this repair entailed the customer supply the replacement movement as the original rusted movement had proven unreliable. Had the customer go back to us with a complaint instead of posting on this forum we could have settle the matter .

chealwatch ltd does not exchange movement type during repairs unless agreed with the customer and often if a watch movement is beyond repair we will return the watch undone.

I am not a fan of these type of forums as anyone can say what they like be it true or false.

Chris Heal chealwatch ltd 

Mate I wouldn't worry about it, no one who comes on this forum as a one off rant will ever be taken seriously & that fact you respond even at 3 years make respect your position in all this. 

You must have plenty of satisfied customers that will testify to your work, I wouldn't worry about old katfish....

Edited by Craftycockney
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I once sent a fairly cheap vintage watch to Chealwatch. It took forever to get back, communication was poor, and when I finally got the watch back it was not serviced and in just as bad condition as when I sent it off.

I personally wouldn't use this person ever again. Not a good vibe.

Sent from my SM-G892U using Tapatalk

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Some people should let sleeping dogs lie. This rejuvenated post now comes up third if you do a Google search regarding the mentioned company, followed by another less than complimentary from another forum.

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Further to my post above, and in the interest of fairness, I should clarify my perspective.

I found Chealwatch (a good few years ago now) online as they were competitively priced for servicing. As described above, my experience was disappointing, but to be clear it was a single experience, and the watch I sent to them was certainly not great. Maybe it was beyond help.

Prior to reading the post here today I had no idea as to Chealwatch's wider reputation, and to be honest it is not of great interest to me.

I stand by my perspective with regards my own customer experience, but other than that I have no opinion.

Sent from my SM-G892U using Tapatalk

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Luckily I've never used Cheal watches. Some years ago I wanted an Omega Constellation serviced and approached them but they never answered.  

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