TV debut for debt collector
 
Debt collector Scott Hines may be an unpopular man to the people he sees each working day – but he might just have saved some from financial disaster.

As an enforcement officer for Essex-based Shergroup, the UK’s largest High Court Enforcement Agency, he was asked to take part in a BBC programme about families facing major debt problems.

The programme uses shock tactics to force people in debt to face up to their problems and Scott was one of the enforcement officers who added the real-life aspect to the show.

Now the programme – Beat the Bailiff – made by Lion TV, is due to be broadcast on Monday 5 March for two weeks.

Scott said: “Basically, I was filmed going into their homes and clearing them of all the goods that were worth selling to pay off their debts.

“The idea was that they would come back in and see nothing left. Although it was not for real and the goods were returned, I think it was a huge wake-up call for some of the people I went to see. But this is just the tip of the iceberg. There are bound to be hundreds of others in debt just like them.”

A spokesperson from Lion TV said the people they filmed were asked to witness what a real visit from the bailiff would look like with the aim of confronting the reality of their debt problem.

“They are also confronted with the reality of their spending habits and the family is given a full financial appraisal and a clear plan about how they must act in the future if they are to avoid a visit from a team of bailiffs – for real.”

Claire Sandbrook, chief executive of Shergroup, said: “Scott’s involvement in this programme was a great way for Shergroup to demonstrate how enforcement officers can help people with debt issues to come to terms with the reality of their situation.”

“A visit from the bailiffs is the last thing people want when they are in debt, but if it happens, there is a real lack of understanding about the severity of the situation. We felt that the Beat the Bailiff programme delivered an important message to the public about what a visit from a bailiff can entail.”

“We hope it will provoke people in similar situations to get help to manage their debt situation or stop them getting into debt in the first place.”

Beat the Bailiff is broadcast on BBC1 at 9.15am on Monday 5 March – Monday to Friday – for two weeks.

 
 
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