THE company which supplied Malvern Town Council with the telephone system for its new Belle Vue terrace offices said this week that all its work had been done to the specification demanded.

Upton-upon-Severn firm Midland Communications was initially approached to tender for the system by a company called Improcom in April, 2000. Having won the tender, it completed the work in July, 2001.

After it emerged last week that taxpayers may now have to stump up more than £4,000 to upgrade the system by the addition of billing and voicemailing facilities, the company's managing director, Keith Davis, revealed that he had even received a letter of gratitude from the consultant to the council, Stuart McDonough, upon completion of the work.

"We're caught in the crossfire," said Mr Davis, "Between the original specification drawn up by the consultants and the acceptance of the tender by the then town council."

He said his company had even given the council a discount on the price of the work because it was a local organisation, adding that the work had been costed in accordance with industry standards.

Midland Communications has discussed revised requirements since payment was received for the work on September 27.

Malvern Town Council has referred the issue to its budget committee.