Franschhoek Literary Festival Sweet and ADT Sour Service Awards


The Sweet Service Award  goes to Jenny Hobbs and Sheenagh Tyler, tireless organisers of the Franschhoek Literary Festival, for a fantastic 5th Festival, and for filling the beds and restaurants of Franschhoek over this stimulating weekend.  More than 7000 tickets were sold for 70 programme sessions, up by 50 % compared to 2010.  It is the first time in many months that the village has been buzzing, and that most establishments were fully booked.  It also created a wonderful interaction between Festival goers, who enjoyed chatting to complete strangers, sharing their passion for reading books and writing.

The Sour Service Award  goes to ADT, for suspending its service to Whale Cottage Franschhoek due to an account that was not paid according to their records, even though our records showed that we had, thereby leaving the guest house unarmed for 24 hours until we got to Franschhoek for the Literary Festival.  We subscribe to their service in Plettenberg Bay too, and this may have caused the confusion, especially as the company now runs its administrative operation from Cape Town, and does not state which regional service it is communicating about or sending invoices for.  The suspension was communicated by empty sms, to which we reacted by call.  SMS’s sent in reply are ignored and not reacted to.  The ADT Paarl manager Emile Weaver was able to expedite the re-connection as soon as they had received our cheque.  One would have expected a manager to have called proactively, to prevent the suspension in the first instance.  ADT has a near-monopoly in Franschhoek, there being no security company alternative. ADT appears to be run by the accounts department.

The WhaleTales Sweet & Sour Service Awards are presented every Friday on the WhaleTales blog.  Nominations for the Sweet and Sour Service Awards can be sent to Chris von Ulmenstein at   Past winners of the Sweet and Sour Service Awards can be read on the Friday posts of this blog, and in the WhaleTales newsletters on the website.

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3 replies on “Franschhoek Literary Festival Sweet and ADT Sour Service Awards”

  1. I hear that Pepler alarms in Franschhoek are a lot better in comparison to price and service of ADT

  2. Dear Chris

    We loved your tweets from the Lit Fest. You were simply the best. You are such an asset to the village. Ignore all those sour faces who gave you a hard time for parkeing in that disabled parking bay. We all know how impossible it is to find parking in the village during festivals like this.

    With love from Maria

  3. Wow Maria, how kind you are!

    What is funny is that I provided some feedback about the Festival by e-mail to the organisers, who were very defensive about it, and implied that I was only moaning about it. I referred them to all my Tweets, and the praise that I had heaped upon them in these, but they have seen none of that, as they themselves are not on Twitter, even though the Literary Festival has a Twitter account (yet no one was Tweeting from that account, nor did they Retweet anything that was written about the Festival)!

    I keep pushing for Social Media to be recognised and included in the programme, and have decided to run my own Social Media workshop alongside the Literary Festival next year.

    We must meet for a coffee in Franschhoek. You sound refreshingly ‘un-Franschhoek’. Or maybe you are from Cape Town?


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