Ed Miliband hears our clients’ payday lender experiences

Karen Bothamley, Thorne CAB

1 November was an exciting day for North East Doncaster Citizens Advice Bureau when our local MP, Ed Miliband, came to visit our Stainforth office. We had told him about the work we’re doing for clients affected by pay day lenders and he asked if he could come and speak to staff and clients.

Ed is our constituency MP and has always shown an interest in our work – but this visit was to be slightly different as he wanted to find out firsthand how clients were affected, and how new policies he is proposing might make a difference to them. We invited several clients who bravely said they would be willing to speak to him, and we were all present and correct at the appointed hour with biscuits at the ready.

The clients were nervous, but they talked through their experiences and answered Ed’s questions really well. He told us he was shocked and touched by what he heard – especially the dodgy recovery practices used by local companies! It was great that I and our Debt Specialists had the chance to discuss the problems in detail with him. Doncaster’s Elected Mayor was also present and we made the most of the opportunity to show her and Ed the problems we are dealing with every day.

All-in-all the visit lasted around an hour. It was really interesting, with Ed appearing determined to do something about pay day lenders. We sent him away with homework – a pack of case studies – and were delighted the following Monday when he sent us a copy of the speech he had made that morning mentioning his visit to us, and using my quote about pay day lenders running riot through people’s lives.

It was great to see social policy work in action, and bureau staff and volunteers feel they have really made a difference. We are looking forward to continuing contact with Mr Miliband in the future.


  1. Michael

    I am a 29 year old father of two from Northumberland, when struggling with my finances and used up all other lending options. I turned to Wonga I asked them for a loan I thought was affordable for me. However, they offered me a greater amount than I requested and I accepted the loan. The £990 loan meant I had to pay back in excess of £1400 within one month even though I have stated to them that my monthly wage is only £1188 before any day to day living costs. Now in November I have still not been able to pay back the loan in full, having paid £1328 I now owe £403 and rising. I am financially strangled and having being depression free for 5 years I am now lower than I have ever been before. I understand it is my fault and have failed my wife and two boys for accepting the loan and risking everything we have, but when backed into a corner and desperate I made the wrong choice. lending More money to someone than they earn is not responsible lending. I have contacted Wonga regarding this with no reply as of yet. I believe so many people are trapped by these out of control greedy lenders. Wonga need stopped or controlled and regulated asap before they cause real harm and damage, I can say 100% if it was not for the sake of my two boys I would have given up. I will get through this tough financial strain and will continue to work hard to provide for my family, but please for the sake of others in this position pass this message onto whoever, you think is in a position to help. As I said I am a 29 year old father of two and I sit each night crying, worrying and dreading waking up in the morning. Thank you for your time.

  2. mark mcdermott

    hi thanks for your good advice and services you provide. keep up the good work, with out you i would had not known what too do, as i have experance myself with, with payday lenders, its not just the t v that thay target, its now on the radio stations all day with there adverts, you can tell its coming near xmas, any way, too cut a long story short, am having too negotiate with all my creditors, and that am fighting my corner, at this moment in time and, as i owe  6 payday lenders. it is hard work having too sort this out. but i got too learn from my mistakes, all are now starting too negotiate with me. as thay have herd of the code of good practice, there is one payday lender i am having trouble with, is called mini credit,, please please please stay away from these vulture, i took out a small loan with them of a £100 pounds only too get £80 pounds off them, as thay say £20 pounds was there admission fee, this was my fault, as i did not read the small print. so in total at the end off last month, thay wanted £139.pounds off me, which i could not afford, so i emailed them back if thay could roll over my loan, for 2 months,, yes this was not a problem but wanted a extra £15.00 for them too do this,, so on advice from national dept line was too stop my debit card with them, and i have sent them a letter, with my budget plan i had not hered from them. but when i checked my login account with mini credit i could not believe what i was seeing, the intrest is now £201 pounds, because i stopped payments with them, ive also been in contact with them trough email, but no reponce from them, i think this company needs reporting too the media just too let people know, what this loan company is really like, thank you for taken the time too read this, and for evor customers not too fall into a trap with this loan company/ as i dont think, there following the code of good practice  ,,mark mcdermott 

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