A father was outraged when Travelodge staff called the police and asked him to verify that he was the parent of his daughter.
Craig Darwell was taking his 13-year-old daughter Millie to Thorpe Park and they were staying in a local hotel when he got accused of being a paedophile.
The 46-year-old widower, lost his wife Sarah to leukaemia when Millie was four-years-old.
Craig told the Sun:
I couldn’t believe it. Millie and I have stayed in lots of places over the years and this has never happened to me before.
We checked in and then I had to move my car. When I got back to reception the guy started asking me to prove I was her dad.
He said it was company policy and I had to go on Facebook to show messages I’ve sent to her.
It was bizarre and really offensive. Then he told me that he’d already called police so I had to wait for them to arrive.
Luckily it took them about two seconds to realise he had got the wrong end of the stick, but it ruined the weekend for me.
Surrey Police said that hotels and other licensed premises ‘had been recently equipped with the right knowledge to identify children who could be at risk of exploitation under Operation Makesafe’.
Travelodge apologised for the error and said an investigation is underway, and that they take their responsibilities towards protecting vulnerable young people very seriously.
Who on earth carries around proof of parenthood?