Our thanks also to Rowan Bosworth-Davies for his brilliant (if disturbing) speech. He's a great man to have on our side and has offered his help and support to SME Alliance. For anyone who hasn't heard of Rowan, I have been following his blogs for some years http://rowans-blog.blogspot.co.uk/
having been directed to them by Ian Fraser. Today he has written an excellent post on Linked In about our meeting yesterday https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/sme-alliance-fantastic-group-fighters-justice-rowan-bosworth-davies For those members who weren't able to attend yesterday, some of his speech is included in the blog.
Enough of the mushy stuff – Andy Keats stunned the whole audience yesterday with his presentation showing clear evidence of documents being manipulated and falsified by RBS. He used to own case to evidence this and I know Andy has spent hours going through his evidence and collating it into a powerful case study which shows how his paperwork has had material added, subtracted and even re-punctuated to make the bank look better and disadvantage Andy. When the last page of his presentation went up showing how all but three or four lines out of fifty had been removed, the whole room gasped!
What's truly amazing about this is – this manipulation will have taken someone hours and hours to do. And Andy's isn't a huge case that would have cost the bank a fortune to resolve. So who authorised someone to spend the hours it took to do this and what lengths have the bank gone to on the really big and really damaging cases? This is definitely not something that could be explained away as clerical error although apparently the bank have said it's something to do with Microsoft!I'm sure that message will be passed on to Microsoft and I wonder what they'll have to say about it?
As if we weren't all shocked enough, Steve Middleton then showed everyone a document we received last week from a member that turns out to be a cut and paste job of three different loans into one in order to convince the lender he still has a mortgage with the bank! Any guesses which bank?
Peter Crowley then gave a very interesting presentation on why banks pull companies down. I'm not going to even try and explain what he said – I'm still digesting the information but I will ask Peter to send me the documents he's printed to evidence this and I'll put them on the website. Joel Benjamin updated us on LOBO loans and local authorities. A huge issue that actually affects everyone because we all pay the exorbitant costs some 250 local authorities are paying for these dubious loans. You can find more about LOBO loans and what Joel does here http://communityreinvest.org.uk/ After Joel, Ray Baker spoke about the work he does to help victims of financial crime. Ray was a regulated lender who but he now uses his experience of the financial to advise and support his previous clients resolve issues. Like all of us, Ray made the point that he does this because he feels he must. And thank God he and our other advisers do feel like this because we wouldn't have made such great progress without them!
We finished with a Q&A session and I know when most people would have been happy to carry on for a lot longer but we ran out of time.
All in all it was a great meeting. Our thanks go to Derek and all the Metro Bank for their hospitality. Also to Nick who was our brilliant Chairman for the meeting and, as always, to the Turner girls. Photo's and video's will be up soon and Sophie is typing up the notes.