This blog was established to help get to the bottom of how the Collins & Bone Partnership reached the very sad situation it is now in, with its partner Liam James Collins having a bankruptcy hearing on 25th January (postponed)15th March 2012 (ditto), and finally bankrupted on 9th May 2012 (case # NEWC 1517 of 2011 BKT 3472187, Newcastle County Court, The Law Courts, The Quayside, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, NE1 3LA), and David Bone Jnr declared bankrupt on 31st May (case no 100 of 2012 Wigan County Court). The partnership used the following addresses:

25 Shelton Street, Covent Garden, London, WC2 H9HW, UK

Eastern Villa, Station Rd. North, Forest Hall, Newcastle Upon Tyne, NE12 9AE (owned by Liam Collin's parents, and now up for sale)

There are 3 specific goals of this blog:

• To find out what happened to the 1m+ GBP monies that C&B raised via PNs in late 2009, 2010 & 2011. I am excluding PNs issued to ex-CBS investors, but that said, this blog will be of interest to ex-CBS investors, and there is information that needs to be obtained from this set of investors wrt when PNs were issued to them, and their duration.

• To determine what, if any, criminal charges should be brought against the partners.

• To warn other investors off doing any business with the partners, their equally inept/unscrupulous extended family members, and supportive cohorts.

When you look at the PNs, there are no specific statements on the documents that specify how the monies were to be used - how you believed they were to be used is based on whatever e-mail/phone call foreplay you had beforehand with Liam Collins. That is why it is so important that the following information is collated for this category of C&B investors on an individual basis:

1) What did you believe you were investing in, and what was your basis for believing this?
2) What investment risks were you informed of?
3) What was your understanding of the purpose to which PN monies could be put?
4) What brochures and documents were you furnished with as prt of your due diligence?
5) What due diligence did you do?
This blog is being operated completely separate to Sally & Jasmine's blog (, although we share the common goal of getting to the bottom of this mess in a professional manner. If you don't want to post anything on the blog in person, you can send an e-mail to me at - information conveyed in any such e-mails will only be posted on the blog on your behalf after any editting/your specific consent.

Ewart (The Editor)

Thursday, 22 March 2012

OK, who squealed? Liam now knows ...

Given all the pointless e-mails Liam Collins has been forwarding expressing the views of investors in the pro-IVA camp, it is clear that the majority of these investors don't read this blog ... because if they did, they would have connected all the dots wrt Liam Collins' latest literary masterpiece below. Since the pro-IVA camp are obviously not out to educate themselves, and because the e-mail gave me such a laugh , I'll help you do so this once ....

  • The blog entry "C&B assets - negative equity" was published 3/3/2012, that's nearly 3 weeks ago. If you bothered to read it, it was explained that 15a Moira Street (Loughborough), the property that Liam Collins is referring to below, was repossessed by the mortgage lender sometime in Q3/early Q4 2011 for obvious reasons ... the partners were not keeping up with their mortgage payments.
  • The property was subsequently put up for sale through a local estate agent, asking price ~52k GBP. It eventually sold for a higher value (you can look up the price it sold for yourselves) to an ex-CBS investor in a bidding war i.e. above market price was paid for the property. The sale was concluded in November 2011. The current estimated value of this property using Liam Collin's favourite asset pricing web-site,, is 51k GBP i.e. the investor has made a loss purchasing this property to date. But get this, the asset price in C&Bs own property spreadsheet was 90k GBP, and the outstanding mortgage on the property was 98,050 GBP!
  • The request to sign 5 year PNs was sent out to C&B investors November 4th 2011, the IFS blog was not created until November 14th 2011 ... and this blog not until 11/02/2012. Clearly the repossession of 15a Moira Street and its' subsequent purchase by an ex-CBS investor who we, the bloggers, didn't even know at the time, were totally unrelated. Liam Collins will of course continue to try and fit a square peg into a round hole (l  > sqrt(2*r^2)) ... and I am quite content to leave him trying!
  • C&B have a proven track record of over-estimating the values of their assets ... this is one of the reasons why their assets are hugely in negative equity today, with mortgages far higher than the properties are worth.
  • The legal responsibility of any IVA practitioner or bankruptcy trustee is to maximise the return to creditors. Maybe Liam Collins can get away with selling C&B assets to "loyal investors", friends and family members below asset value .... but an IVA practitioner/bankruptcy trustee most certainly cannot. The idea is preposterous!
The Editor

----- Forwarded Message -----
From: Liam Collins <>
To: Liam Collins <>
Sent: <22nd March 2012>

Dear all,

We are writing to you all again this morning with some potentially alarming information.

A number of you have been wondering for some time why Sally and Jasmine George, and the handful of people supporting them, have been so insistent that bankruptcy is better than an IVA, when bankruptcy made no commercial sense.

We may have found the answer:

It would appear that the blog writers (and supporters) are looking to push for bankruptcy in order to benefit from the portfolio themselves. Maybe they feel that they can purchase the properties at a reduced price once we are made bankrupt!!!

We have evidence that one of their supporters has already done this. One of our properties (mortgaged with the Coventry building society) which we had re-possessed last year has been purchased in a ‘fire sale’ at a vastly reduced price (around half of what the property was purchased for, the shortfall of which is still a collinsbone debt and will form part of the IVA) by one of Sally and Jasmine's supporters. Coincidence? I don’t think so!

This person has confirmed only last night that he 'has a man ready to take control of the portfolio when we are made bankrupt'.

Will he be sharing out the portfolio among the investors? I will leave you to draw your own conclusions.

We already have Sally and Jasmine's email to us which states it will cost us £15,500 to stop them writing the blog etc. We were assured of their 'best efforts' to help us to fix our relations with our investors if we paid them this, yet  one of the blog's main supporters, an ex-CBS investor, is waiting in the wings to step in and take control of everything ! 

Just who is pulling the strings here ?

The blog claims they are doing this to 'bring us to justice' and to 'stop future investors being hurt as they had'. It would appear their crusade had a price. It was £15,500 in Sally and Jasmine's case (in other words, once they had their money, to Hell with the 'justice' and 'protection' for others).

The man  who has purchased the re-possessed asset even states on their blog how much respect he has for Sally and Jasmine for protecting other investors!!!).

We ask you again?


To be absolutely clear:

As you may be aware, the hearing has now been adjourned again until early May, we still believe an IVA is the best way forward for all concerned and will be workign towards this. An IVA means the assets will essentially be held in trust for ALL investors and sold after 5 years, without the threat of LPA.

If anybody has any questions at all, please get in touch, If you wish to support an IVA then please let us know in an email as soon as possible.

Kind Regards,

Liam and David.

1 comment:

  1. It occurs to me that if Collins and Bone investment properties were valued for remortgage purposes by a RICS surveyor (as they confidently claimed would happen in their investment literature) then the impression was given that the RICS surveyor(s) they used could be relied upon to value the properties at the elevated levels used to sell the scheme. (That is, the values were to be hiked after the renovations, theoretically leaving C&B renovations in profit and the investor/purchaser in positive equity).

    Does this, I wonder, raise questions about the RICS valuers used by C&B that the valuers' professional organisation might be interested in?