This issue I feel I have travelled back in time as most of my stories are ancient and should have died long ago. But there you go… you can’t keep a ‘good’ story down.

Remember Lanwall? Photo’crookier’ Lanwall died several years ago, leaving hundreds of retailers with useless machines and rotten deals with banks/finance companies which still required lease repayments. Those five-year leases are now coming to an end. In the past week I’ve been contacted by four retailers stuck with their duff machines.

Best one was David Wilson. He is no longer a c-store retailer - he has moved onto bakery, but no matter. His lease (which cost him £7K) came to an end and he got a letter from CF Capital Plc demanding another £350 to transfer ownership.

Whaaaat? he thought. “When I took on the agreement, which was daft I know, we signed with CF Capital. Then we got a letter from Siemens Finance saying it had been assigned to them to manage.Now it’s over and Siemens doesn’t want the machine back, but CF Capital is claiming ownership. If it was ‘assigned’ how can CFC cherry pick bits to keep?”

It’s a very good question and one that David will be putting to William Hague, his MP. Where is the due diligence? asks David. He has to show it in his business; so why don’t the financial institutions which bankroll the likes of Lanwall without even running credit checks? More on this next issue.