Tuesday 28 February 1995
Or at any rate the offices of Scottish Widows, where the news of Barings' woes was met with disbelief.
Barings is, in theory, the tenant at a 235,000 sq ft office block on London Wall owned by the institution.
In theory, that is, because the bank is yet to move in - the carpet-fitters' contract is just another headache for Ernst & Young to sort out.
The plan, no doubt subject to revision now, was for Barings to consolidate its Bishopsgate and America Square operations on to the one site, leased from Scottish Widows for just over £8m a year.
The institution had agreed to take on the lease for America Square in return for the letting, so one thing is for sure - the lawyers will be busy for the next few weeks sorting it all out.
While the search for a tenant goes on, Scottish will remain grateful for the scraps that it earns renting the building out to film companies and advertisers, principal source of income so far.
It's rather appropriate I suppose that "All or Nothing At All", Hugh Laurie's portrait of a young City whiz-kid, was filmed in the building.
For those who missed it, Laurie's character gambled mind-boggling sums of other people's money (on the horses in his case) and lost the lot.
The troubles at the venerable merchant bank also impinged on the press conference announcing the latest results from Midland Bank parent HSBC. Drooping eyelids and even the odd snore were the order of the day, my informant tells me, since many on both sides of the microphone were involved in the weekend's frenetic attempts to save Barings.
A medal, though, should go to John Bond, HSBC's chief executive, who performed with aplomb despite being detained at the Bank of England well into Sunday evening.
Their City brethren generally keep low after the failure of a merger, but the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales is on the offensive in the wake of the collapse of the latest attempt to rationalise their somewhat overcrowded profession. Roger Lawson (below), institute president, was yesterday up bright and early and - suitably attired in a Monty Pythonesque bowler - helping unveil the first of a series of posters to promote the value of the chartered qualification. The institute, which is reputedly spending £230,000 on the campaign, hopes the humourous ads will bring home the dangers of using unqualified accountants and polish up their tarnished image. But, being accountants, they are not blowing the money willy-nilly. The effectiveness of the "radical new departure" will be monitored and members are being urged to pass on feedback on the campaign.
- 1 California man brutally beat 82-year-old Sikh grandfather he mistook for 'one of those people'
- 3 School kitchen manager 'fired from Colorado school for giving hungry students free lunches'
- 5 Charles Kennedy 'had better judgement drunk than many sober politicians' says Ian Hislop
California man brutally beat 82-year-old Sikh grandfather he mistook for 'one of those people'
Amber Peat: Body found in search for missing 13-year-old who left house after argument with her parents
School kitchen manager 'fired from Colorado school for giving hungry students free lunches'
Alton Towers closed after horror crash on The Smiler raises safety questions for theme park
Alton Towers crash: Four guests seriously injured as Smiler ride carriages collide
Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination
Migrants in Kos: Photos show real tragedy after Brits abroad complain of 'awkward' holidays
British tourists complain that impoverished boat migrants are making holidays 'awkward' in Kos
Michael Gove determined to scrap the Human Rights Act – even if Scotland retains it
Threat to scrap Human Rights Act could see UK follow Nazi example, warns UN official
Church of England 'one generation away from extinction' after dramatic loss of followers
iJobs Money & Business
£30000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The UK's fastest growing, multi...
£70000 - £90000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Financial Reporting Manager i...
£23000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They win lots of awards for the...
£13500 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This nationwide enforcement com...