The Mortgage Mole

Digging the dirt in the mortgage world ...

Keep your shirt on

And so to Cheltenham races. Step forward Terry ‘Family Guy’ Pritchard – solely accountable for a net loss of 13,000-plus among a total of 36 gullible edeus punters. Mole on the other hand, wise to the tricks of the poacher-turned-pilchard, was having none of it. A reverse forecast from editor Robyn Hall meant that horses Wee Robbie and Bob Hall will furnish Mole’s burrow for months if not years to come.

Tip top

John Malone, managing director of Premier Mortgage Service, quickly proved himself to be Cheltenham’s top racecourse tipster.

A superb win on the third day saw the mortgage Godfather scoop his retirement and more with a hefty win on Inglis Dreber.

Meanwhile, ber-hack Hall was drowning his sorrows (again) due to the unfortunate help of the pilchard.

Mug’s game

Horse racing proved definitely not to be Hall’s event last week. With the number of mortgage industry gurus in attendance at Cheltenham you would have thought that he stood a chance of being quids in.

He had Network Data’s Alex Cotton and George Flemming, PMS’ Lisa Martin and the Godfather, Cobalt Capital’s Richard Taylor and Andrew Montlake, a slimline Tom ‘don’t ask how many carbs are in pasta’ Bland and some sexy business development managers all offering him top tips, so surely he was onto a winner?

Well, thanks to the help of Family Guy, all was lost – literally.

Computer blues

After being fined 1m for losing customer information on a stolen laptop, Mole thought that Nationwide would steer well clear of all mention of portable PCs.

Alas, the mutual has chosen to highlight its misdemeanour by advertising its online remortgaging service by featuring several laptops on prominent display. Mole salutes its attempt to face its demons head on.


There’s the curse of the Bermuda Triangle, the curse of Tutankhamun’s tomb and even Wallace and Gromit and the curse of the Wererabbit, but no curse has ever been so destructive as that of the Mortgage Strategy features desk.

First Christine Toner, features writer, broke her leg at the Council of Mortgage Lenders’ Christmas Ball in December. And now Clare Bettelley, associate editor, has felt its dread power. While out on her bicycle on Tuesday morning last week Bettelley was hit by a car that decided to make a last-minute lane change on the roundabout by London’s IMAX cinema.

She escaped with cuts, bruises and a cracked elbow. Stephanie Spicer, supplements editor, now comes to work with a rabbit’s foot and an upturned horseshoe to avoid a similar fate.