Archive for June, 2013

Wednesday, June 12th, 2013

So here’s a yarn.

A GOOD LITTLE MIXER, available as an e-book at www.amazon.co.uk <http://www.amazon.co.uk>  and www.amazon.com <http://www.amazon.com> . Read the first 10,000 words, free, on Amazon Look Inside.

red cover 2

 

Wanna know about your pension contributions?
 
It’s the mid ‘80s. Jason Jay is an estate agent. He is not your run-of-the-mill house salesman. He deals in bigger numbers, buying and selling commercial property investments. He is one of those advisers who direct money into and out of the commercial property fabric of the nation. Big money, much of it from pension funds, is invested on the recommendation of people like Jay.

This is an area that affected anyone who had a pension fund. Not many people owned a factory or a shop or an office block but their pension provider probably did.

The story centres on the Mayfair firm of Jenkins Adlard and its thrusting investment dealers – the grasping Roger Arnott, the statuesque and scheming Grace Irvine, the aristocratic Sebastian Winn, the rich brat, Tim Richards, the poison dwarf,  James Penney, and the avaricious and entirely unlikable Jason Jay himself. It also features Richard Green, thrice married ace developer and lousy guitarist.

            The neutral observer is Ray Cressey. He works for estate agent, Charles Beecroft, in the country town of Redbury until he gets sacked for an indiscretion with the boss’s mistress after the office Christmas party. Moving to London, he gets a job with Jenkins Adlard.

            There, his finds a place where the deal rules. ‘Go for the deal’ and the fee attached to it, that is the creed. It doesn’t matter whether the deal is good or bad for the client. Just get the client to do it, collect the fee and if the deal turns out to be bad, say the market changed. Then, when an acquaintance from Redbury asks for help on a property problem, he gains a little more perspective.

            This is a story from the mid-Thatcher years. There is naked ambition, sexism and a blatant pitch for the Bad Sex Award, together with plenty of posturing and a bit of violence which occasionally laced the bigger picture.

            Oh, and money. Don’t forget the money. Nobody else ever did.

 

Meanwhile, back on the waterfront and in the June issue of Anglia Afloat, you will find word of the Butley Ferry, a service which has operated more or less continually for 500 hundred years and perhaps a lot longer. A volunteer-run, summertime, weekend-only rowing boat job, its boatmen wear floppy hats in a nod to provenance, the black land-worker’s floppy hat having featured for much of the ferry’s existence.  It’s a quiet spot – nearest road a mile away – and a nice feature to put into a country stroll or bike ride. Get there before it packs up in late September.