Sophisticated scammers are pretending to be bailiffs, in an effort to trick individuals out of money.
In one such instance an individual was called by sophisticated scammers claiming to be from a company of bailiffs. The scammer claimed that they were, on the request of the courts in Huddersfield, on their way to his home due to his failure to pay £3500 awarded against him in a county court judgement.
Taking the number the “bailiff” had given individual, they decided to call the court. To their surprise they were met with a recorded message. It statined that they had called Huddersfield courts, before a number of options were listed. The individual was then put through to what they thought was an officer, who explained the process required, sending what appeared to be authentic documentation.
Once the individual got home they were still suspicious and looked up the number for the court online, which was different to the one they had been given and called them. The court confirmed that it was a scam and explained that the scammers had copied and were using their documentation. They had even lifted the phone intro from Huddersfield court.
Thankfully, this case ended well, but up and down the country millions of pounds are lost to scam telephone calls. Don’t become a statistic and stay safe from scammers.
Tips for dealing with sophisticated scammers
There are a few things to remember when picking up the phone to a bailiff to make sure that you are protected:
A bailiff company will never ask you to phone the court to pay an outstanding debt
Make sure they have the correct paperwork and that it is in date
Don’t give any private information such as bank details
New buildings cause a huge amount of interest, these may be from speculative agents trying to get an impromptu viewing without consent, often very convincingly, or it can be previous contractors who have left equipment on site. We take this responsibility seriously and will not be shoved around by people regardless of how convincing they are. Equally we provide a warm, professional welcome to authorised visitors and briefing to them of any safety concerns. In addition to this we provide a full visit report to client on who has attended the building. At Gallowglass Security we take a comprehensive approach, to ensuring a property is secured quickly and effectively. We ensure that all members of our Property team are fully aware of the workings and running of each property, keeping our clients property safe and secure until their tenants are ready to take over the building in excellent working condition.
Why take this professional approach?
After the builders have left, there are always teething problems and knowledge gaps for the new tenant. Ensuring that you can close this knowledge gap is crucial to a building owner’s new customer. As a result we undertake a thorough hand-over on behalf of the buildings owner, ensuring everything is in working condition, before handing the building over to the new tenant through a further comprehensive handover.
What is involved in the handover?
We have a nine point check-list of duties to ensure the security of the property. We undertake these daily and every new guard double checks on the guard before, taking photographic evidence along the way, which is filed in an electronic report.
Our nine-point checking process includes:
Fire and evacuation Our first responsibility, before anything else, is to identify all the fire exists and the assembly areas. Making sure that we keep people who may be on the premises safe is of critical importance to us.
Alarms Most buildings have fire and intruder alarms that need regular testing on certain days at certain times. This helps to ensure they are working appropriately and also ensures that when the alarm goes at an irregular time, we know what to do and the appropriate authorities are alerted in a timely fashion.
Access control systems Access control systems are often overlooked; however, providing access to visitors is crucial, especially when you have new tenants undertaking a recce of the building. Ensuring we know how to operate all the access and entry systems for deliveries and the front of house is crucial.
Main location of work and welfare We ensure that we capture photographs of the main working areas and the building to identify any issues that may occur. This helps reassure our clients that we are undertaking checks regularly and any problems that may arise are spotted early.
Post New building owners are always going to receive post and deliveries before the moving-in day. Ensuring all post is filed correctly and all deliveries are signed for is critical to ensuring a smooth start for a new tenant or building owner. As a result, our staff learn about the businesses moving into the building to ensure that all their post is categorised appropriately and finds its way to the right owners one moving-in day.
Computer and phones Every reception desk has a computer and telephone. Ensuring our staff know how to use the systems is critical to the efficient running of the building.
Keys and Codes Typically, new buildings will have anything up to 200 bunches of keys which will equate to 600 individual keys. The project manager will hand these over with an associated list, we immediately audit these keys to ensure none are missing. This is a laborious task and typically we expect to find between 3%-9% error. If required we will also label and provide appropriate storage.
Internal patrols One of the most important parts of our role is to undertake an internal inspection of all floors, rooms and corridors. This includes checking all fire-exits are clear, there are no leaks, defective pipes or lightbulbs and ensuring no rubbish is left lying around untidily. We ensure our staff check all the taps, radiators and loos, to ensure that everything is working, reporting any problems to the building owner in detail.
External patrols Our external patrol is also incredibly important. This helps us identify any security threats to the building, external damage, rubbish, defects or those that may have chosen to sleep rough. Whilst externally inspecting the building we check all emergency access routes. Look for open windows, especially on ground floor and further up the building.
Protecting a building requires a professional and thorough approach, a thorough process and exceptional customer service. Our nine point plan ensures we deliver the top guarding and front of house service for our customers.
Gallowglass Security, working with Cluttons – an international firm of chartered surveyors – has been providing Front of House services and 24-hour security for the former MI6 headquarters in London. The 72,000 square foot, Grade A commercial property in the heart of London was originally constructed in the 1920’s as the headquarters for MI6. It was occupied under the guise of the “Minimax Fire Extinguisher Company” to maintain its secrecy.
Since MI6 and the latest tenants have left the building, it has undergone a complete refurbishment to provide high-quality, Grade A office space.
Gallowglass Security has been securing the property in advance of the next tenants moving in, with a focus on high calibre front of house services whilst managing the day-to-day signing-in contractors whilst ensuring a high-level of customer service is maintained when potential tenants arrive to view the building.
The on-site staff managing the property are supported by the head-office team. This ensures the new tenants have the appropriate risk assessments and method statements available to them prior to taking on the tenancy.
The short-term contract to secure the site and prepare the building for its new tenants has been underway for the last two weeks.
George Oliver, the Head of Gallowglass Security’s property division said: “This is an example of a high-quality team delivering a flexible and effective service for our clients. Our remit is not only the protection of the building, but front of house services, ensuring all guests and staff receive a warm and professional welcome. We take pride in our ability to deliver services above and beyond those you would expect from a security company. We ensure a consistent, professional and secure service throughout the building.”
A famous restaurant in London has recently made the headlines due to a landmark case brought against this London establishment by the building’s owner. The owner is “demanding that the Wolseley’s operators Corbin & King pay all of the almost £1m of rent debt that built up while the restaurant was closed during coronavirus lockdowns” according to the Financial Times. Corbin and King have referred to the clause in their contract that states the company is not entitled to pay rent whilst unable to operate, which was signalled by the numerous lockdowns. This issue is one that is playing out up and down the country. According to the same article, estimates suggest that there is £6.4bn in unpaid rent across the UK. All of which could have an enormous impact on our city centres and high streets across the UK.
Here we look at what powers there are to pursue for rent and how tenants can get support to help manage the payments that landlords may legally be entitled to.
What is a High Court Writ of Control?
A high court writ of control is a document obtained via a designated high court enforcement officer, of a debt of £600.00 or greater. The writ itself can be obtained via a standard CCJ, or in this case, can be issued through a combined writ of possession and control whereby historical rent arrears are recoverable. It allows our enforcement officers to levy goods up to and including the value of the writ.
How do I obtain a High Court Writ of Control?
Once you have a CCJ or a possession order outlining rent arrears, Gallowglass Enforcement offers a variety of services. We offer evictions, as well as attempted recovery of the rent arrears, using experienced enforcement agents with an abundance of industry experience. Once the ‘transfer-up’ process is competed the writ will be assigned to one of our accredited enforcement agents to recover the outstanding debt. The ‘transfer-up’ process is the process of gaining a high court writ of control from a CCJ or a possession order from the county court.
What powers does this give me to pursue a former tenant?
You can pursue the debtor for your money as long as it is within six years of the original county court judgment. A high court writ of control affords our enforcement agents the right to levy goods should the debtor decide not to pay. Our enforcement agents can also force entry to commercial premises. There is a clear advantage of using high court enforcement rather than county court, where combined warrants are not possible; the county court bailiff does not work at a commission rate so there is no incentive to chase diligently. Gallowglass also offers a tracing service, therefore enforcement on historical tenants will prove fruitful assuming a forwarding address is found.
What powers does my tenant have?
Your tenant can contest the debt by applying to the court to get the judgment set aside. This would be via Part 13 of setting aside of varying default judgment. Since rent arrears originate from non-payment of a contractual obligation on the part of the tenant, they would therefore have little if no recourse for rebuttal. However, each defence from each tenant would have its own merits and the judge would make these decisions accordingly, should the tenant choose to contest the writ. However, at the point of the writ of control issue the judge may find that the debtor has had numerous opportunities to either pay the debt, or enter mediation with the claimant.
Who can offer support to my former tenant?
There are a variety of debt support and relief services, the Citizens Advice Bureau, stepchange.org and nationaldebtline.org to name a few. They may also choose to contest the debt using their own chosen legal professional.
Trespassing is not just a pain, it is illegal. However, understanding the difference and how you manage a trespasser is critical to protecting your land and property, whilst deterring trespassers in the future. Gallowglass Security offer a variety of solutions when dealing with trespassers, but before we dive into those, we want to answer some of the top questions we receive about trespassing.
What makes a trespasser?
Trespass is the unlawful occupation or interference with land or property belonging to someone else. It is illegal and you, the landowner, has the right to remove a trespasser. However, it is worth being careful, as trespassers also have rights and they aren’t just a nuisance.
What are their rights?
Under common law, a land owner has a right to remove people who tresspass, which is often referred to as a self-help remedy. This consists of the use of reasonable force to remove trespassers. There is little judicial guidance on what is reasonable force and each case is judged on its own facts. When dealing with a trespasser and wanting to stay on the right side of the law, consult an expert.
Can I threaten them?
Gallowglass Security are firm believers of amicable solutions. Politely ask the trespassers to leave as soon as you become aware of them. Should this not result in a solution, contact Gallowglass Security as we can remove trespassers without having to go through the court’s process. If the police attend, try to be there at the same time so you have a good idea of what is happening. You can forcibly remove trespassers, but only ‘reasonable force’ is permitted by law.
Can I remove them?
Here at Gallowglass Security, we understand the constant problem of trespassers on commercial land and property. The process of a High Court Writ can often be a lengthy drawn-out process- and the nature of the lifestyle of the trespasser leaves room for their constant return after eviction. Therefore, we will exercise rights of self-help to remove these trespassers from your land and will instruct bailiffs from Gallowglass Security to do so on its behalf. This right, under common law, is set out in Halsbury’s laws of England, Para 1400, volume 45 of Fourth edition.
The turnover time from the serving of such a notice to eviction of trespassers is usually less than 36 hours. So should you suffer the blight of returning illegal trespassers onto your land, we have a process in place to remove them almost as quickly as they arrive.
How do I stop trespassers?
Mark your land so people can clearly ascertain when they have strayed from public land. Highlighting these boundaries with a secure gate or fence is effective. Having neighbours who can keep an eye on your property when away can also act to deter trespassers. Gallowglass Security offer security services that patrol vacant properties ensuring trespassers do not enter. Please see the security section of our website for further information on this service.
Over the course of COVID-19 lockdowns, cities and councils across the UK and continent saw a decreasing number of rough sleepers on the street. This was largely due to efforts by the authorities and charities to house the rough sleepers in hotels. As a result, many rough sleepers were able to access the help they needed from charities around the reasons why they had ended up on the street.
This has helped decrease the number of rough sleepers on the streets; however, where the rough sleepers have returned, they have concentrated on smaller areas populated by tourists, local residents, shoppers and restaurants.
With the opening up of the UK to tourism, there has also been a marked rise in the number of organised beggars, especially around some the country’s shopping and eating areas. With this rise, there has been an increased demand for street patrol units to ensure that those most in need of help are able to access support.
If you are looking for street patrol support, here is a reminder of some of the top questions we are asked:
WHAT ARE STREET/FOOT PATROLS?
Street Patrols are made up of a two-man foot patrol team who are dedicated to a small area such as a retail stretch or a Business improvement district (BID). The team patrol the area providing help and support to all visitors to the area.
Our security officers engage with retailers, supporting in incidents such as shop lifting, direct outreach services to those sleeping rough and liaise and maintain a strong working relationship with local dedicated ward officers from the police services. We provide the local force with local intelligence, collecting CCTV and providing reports. This reduces pressure on their services and increases crime prevention.
WHAT DOES A STREET SECURITY TEAM DO?
Their first responsibility is customer service to all visitors to an area. We are often the first people that visitors interact with, and we are also a point of contact for tenants on behalf of landowners. Therefore, we reflect our client and are there to support and relay information to management teams to make strategic decisions.
WHY DO YOU NEED STREET/FOOT PATROLS?
The urban policing structure has changed. Although the numbers of dedicated ward officers have been maintained their areas of responsibility have increased, therefore their impact has reduced. This has been driven by a focus on counter terrorism and not on neighbourhood policing. This has seen a well-documented rise in street crime, especially on individuals and retailers. Many are targeted for their mobile phones. Street patrols act as a genuine deterrent to this type of behaviour and the improvement in areas where we work can be demonstrated by the metropolitan police own data.
HOW DO STREET/FOOT PATROLS WORK?
The two-man team focus on a designated area, this can often change throughout a day where they take on specific responsibilities depending on what is required. Typically, retailers require support in the day and restaurant areas need support at lunch and in the evening. The team aim to quickly build a rapport with shop managers, restaurant staff and front of house teams in hotel and office sectors. The team visit and collect data and general information which is collated in detailed reports and shared with the client which may be a landowner or a group of local businesses. The data is able to provide information on trends and concerns.
WHAT LICENSES DO STREET PATROL SECURITY HAVE?
All Gallowglass Security team members have a front-line SIA licence and receive a number of valuable training courses including ACT action counters terrorism, identifying vulnerable adults, fire marshalling, health and safety, customer service, and emergency communications. As a result, they are well equipped to manage a range of issues that they may face, seamlessly supporting the police, fire and ambulance services.
And so, the juggernaut that is Tough Mudder, moves on this weekend for the greatly anticipated Midlands leg of the UK 2021 series; located amongst the elegant splendour of the grounds of Belvoir Castle.
The Gothic inspired and imposing Belvoir Castle is the ancestral home to the Duke of Rutland; and is located on the nape of a steep high hill overlooking the Vale of Belvoir, which has been described as an unspoilt stretch of English Countryside at its patchwork green best.
This serene and beautiful backdrop and landscape gives little hint of the daunting challenges facing those hardy souls brave enough to take on the epic endurance challenges presented by Tough Mudder. The competitors are expected to cover 10 to 12 miles on foot whilst overcoming up to 25 obstacles located throughout the course, and some of which have a challenging twist in that they play on elemental human fears such heights, water and electricity !
Since inception the Tough Mudder obstacles have evolved, but some, notably the “arctic enema “, electric shock therapy”, and “hydrophobia” are time tested perennial challenges; and still remain to throw the gauntlet down to the competitors fighting spirit. New additions to test Tough Mudder vets include “well swung” which relies on sheer grit and strength.
At Gallowglass we are privileged to have been the security provider for Tough Mudder for so many years, and it is a great favourite for our guard force. Our security teams travel the length and breadth of mainland UK to provide a highly professionally run security guarding regime at each leg, that reflects the positive and up beat tone of this remarkable event.
The Gallowglass security team leader for Tough Mudder UK John Griffiths says of this event. “ Tough Mudder is a tremendous event to be involved in. A lot of prior planning and logistics are involved to ensure that we successfully meet our security objectives. These events have an incredibly upbeat and positive vibe, and its essential that our guards mirror that with high energy positive interaction with competitors and staff.
I am proud of our fabulous team who always work hard to deliver, and no one epitomise this better than Mike Ellis, who constantly impresses with his never say die and positive can do attitude, which is the Gallowglass Security way”.
Over the course of COVID-19, evictions were largely given a moratorium. However, according to the government “Courts will carefully prioritise the most egregious cases, such as those involving anti-social behaviour and other crimes” meaning “orders can now be enforced where the landlord has a valid warrant of possession”. However, bailiffs must provide 14 days’ notice of an eviction and have been asked not to carry out an eviction if they are made aware that anyone living in the property has COVID-19 symptoms or is self-isolating. As a result, Gallowglass Security has adapted it’s eviction process to meet these new rules and keep our staff safe from Covid-19.
Here we answer some of your questions to keep you in the know.
How do I correctly make a residential eviction?
At Gallowglass Enforcement we perform residential, commercial and common law evictions. Should you require an eviction, we can help from the point you receive your N26 Order for Possession from the county court. The N26 Order for Possession is required for both residential and some commercial evictions. For common law evictions, i.e., travellers on your land or trespassers in your commercial premises, only a notice will have to be served as a possession order is not necessary. We are able to assist and help with all such eviction queries and needs.
How do Gallowglass Security undertake a residential eviction?
Once we receive your N26 Order for Possession, our team will be able to transfer this to a High Court Writ of Possession under Section 42 of the County Courts Act 1984. Once this writ is received, the tenant is given 14 days to vacate the premises. Please note that Writs of Possession cannot be disputed the same way a County Court Warrant can – there is no leeway for a stay of eviction. Therefore, we have an excellent eviction success rate and endeavour to evict via legislative process ensuring diligence to our client’s immediate need, leaving problem tenants with no recourse for rebuttal.
Undertaking Commercial and Common Law Evictions on private land
Here at Gallowglass, we understand the constant problem of travellers on commercial land and property. The process of a High Court Writ outlined above can often be a lengthy drawn-out process- and the nature of the lifestyle of the traveller leaves room for their constant return after eviction. Therefore, we will exercise rights of self-help to remove these travellers from your land and will instruct bailiffs from Gallowglass to do so on its behalf. This right, under common law, is set out in Halsbury’s laws of England, Para 1400, volume 45 of Fourth edition.
The turnover time from the serving of such a notice to eviction of travellers is usually less than 36 hours. So should you suffer the blight of returning illegal travellers onto your land, we have a process in place to remove them almost as quickly as they arrive.
Undertaking evictions during the Coronavirus Pandemic
Evictions have become more difficult to perform due to health and safety concerns around the potential of transmission of coronavirus during repossession. Of course, problem tenants and trespassers are aware of this and will use this to try to delay the proceedings. Therefore, at Gallowglass we have the following policies and procedures in place to ensure successful evictions, and prevent unwarranted complaints from the problem tenant. We have taken official government advice as well as our own experience to come up with the following points to reduce these potential issues:
On arrival at a property, our enforcement agents will undertake a dynamic risk assessment. They will remain alert to risk throughout the visit and will act to mitigate these if they identify a risk to their own or another’s safety. Mitigation measures will be put in place throughout the entire visit.
Our enforcement agents work in pairs. They will operate in fixed teams where possible to minimise contact between different individuals.
Full PPE will be worn, so any potential problem tenants will not have potential transmission to use as an excuse to evade eviction process.
The appointment of the new Health Secretary Javid on the 26th June, signalled a positive change in the mood music for the events and hospitality industry, which was confirmed by yesterdays announcement that stage 4 of the lock down road map will proceed as scheduled. The key changes that effect the events and hospitality industry can be summarised as follows:
Nightclubs can open
Pubs and restaurants no longer table-service only
No limits on guests at weddings and funerals
No limits on people attending concerts, theatres or sports events
No restrictions on communal worship
Despite the caveats and qualifications that came with Prime Minister Johnsons announcement yesterday, and with the sword of Damocles hanging over this vital industry with the proliferation of the transmission of the Delta variant, this is still welcome news.
Gallowglass Security would be delighted to assist you as a security provider in any capacity required. We are skilful, adept and highly experienced in providing security for all manner of events ranging from product promotions, FTSE 100 corporate GM’s , corporate hospitality, private parties , weddings, film shoots through to outdoor concerts and cultural festivals.
We can provide well led, dynamic and highly trained security personnel at very short notice if your lead in times are short, and are available to support you and clients from all our service sectors 24/7, 365 days of the year.
Our Covid experience provides an extra layer of comfort for all buyers of security services. During the pandemic we have provided security for the Greater London Authority (and still do) as well as other London Boroughs at Hotels accommodating rough sleepers.
Consequently we have formulated our own Covid awareness training, and have delivered this in face to face tool box training to all guards in a customer facing role. The author of our innovative and highly effective Covid safety measures is a graduate teacher who holds the coveted NEBOSH diploma and is also qualified by BSI as a lead auditor in the ISO 45001 (occupational health & safety) standard.
As control measures are expected, though not mandated by the government, we are uniquely equipped to enforce any control measures you are minded to implement, or are required to if such measures feature as license requirements.
So if you need security, please call us 02073267840 or contact us on email@example.com
We live in fascinating yet turbulent, and highly unpredictable times. The convulsions in society, largely brought about by Brexit and the Covid pandemic, and aided and abetted by social media, have brought about seismic change and the polarising of attitudes that has challenged, and some would say shattered traditional divisions and loyalties.
We see this discontent play out in increasingly trenchant public protest in London and throughout the UK. This ranges from from disenchanted Brexit Remainers, Extinction Rebellion on climate change, BLM and their charge of systemic racism and the need for reparations to atone for slavery, the anti-lockdown and vax movement challenging government Covid policy, through to open government advocates with their desire to see the freeing of Julian Assange.
It was a great privilege therefore, to be invited by Steve Kennedy, a dedicated and committed criminal defence lawyer; to provide security support to him, his team of volunteers and speakers to speak, unimpeded, at Parliament Square in London against the Police Crime Sentencing and Courts Bill.
Opponents of this Bill argue passionately that if this Bill enters the statute book, then cherished notions of the right to protest, and in turn free speech, will be curtailed, and without this vital pressure valve, disorder could take a far more dangerous and virulent turn. One thing is certain, 2021 will not replicate 1967’s Summer of Love, and we foresee turmoil ahead.
As an organisation it is not our position to take a view on these profoundly important societal issues. Our only priority is to discharge our security obligations, to the very highest professional and ethical standards, to protect those who put their trust in us.