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The Bankstone News team keep a sideways-slanting eye on current developments in the world of motor insurance. Boldly grasping the wrong end of any news stick going, Bankstone News keeps its loyal readers comprehensively misinformed and (just occasionally) mildly amused.

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Ten years a legal services provider

July 21, 2017

If you’re anything like Bankstone News (and God help you if you are), you’re probably a big fan of the occasional movie. There’s nothing we like better than to have a few close friends over for a session of what we believe young folks today call Netflix ’n’ Chill.

Of course there’s more than one place you can catch a movie, and one of Bankstone News’ favourites is something called YouTub, which is where we found ourselves the other day, catching up on old favourites like Atom Egoyan’s The Adjuster, The Incredibles, Double Indemnity, and of course Kevin Watneys in The Broker’s Man.

And then, whilst furiously rootling around for further insurance-related audiovisual delights, we chanced upon something really rather special. The title of the piece is A Decade of Growth – 2016 Results. It’s a brief but highly impressive work by the acclaimed ARAG Illegal Services, and stars the endlessly watchable Tony Boss.

The essential premise of the film is that Boss is a man seated in an ostensibly bland office setting, looking back at the ten year period that has seen an organisation he refers to simply as ARAG go from being a small group of people barely scraping by to a large group of people making shedloads of money.

But that bare summary hardly begins to do justice to what is never less than a riveting watch. As Boss chunters on, the camera angle shifts from left to right and back again with bewildering rapidity, leaving the viewer simultaneously bewildered and beguiled.

Live action footage of the seated Boss, speaking first slightly to the left of the viewer then slightly to the right, is interspersed with animated sequences that bring vividly to life the extraordinary trajectory of ARAG’s meteoric rise to something approaching global dominance.

The longer we spend in Boss’ company, the more we notice subtle visual clues hidden in the seemingly innocuous corporate environment behind him.

The fronds of potted plants and dense foliage seen through white-framed windows, for instance, remind us that it’s ‘a jungle’ out there – and that ARAG’s seemingly irresistible rise has not perhaps been quite the walk in the park the urbane Boss’ nonchalance suggests.

Motivational posters on the wall, meanwhile, carry subtly disorienting messages: Drive – don’t run on the beach, Farsi classes located here, and Opinions count for nothing if your scarf is underwhelming, inviting the viewer to speculate on the manifold complexities of life in the illegal services market.

There’s a great deal more to it than that, of course, including one unforgettable scene in which we see an array of trophies housed in mysterious yellow niches. The best we can suggest is that you watch it for yourself. We guarantee you won’t be disappointed if you like this kind of thing!

A vivid representation of how ARAG has changed colour over the years.



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Beware the dread penumbra of driving’s darkest hour

July 21, 2017

Yay, schools out, you and your family may be thinking this weekend, let’s jump in the car and head off somewhere holiday-ish.

Bad idea! Very, VERY bad idea!

Because this Saturday is not like other Saturdays (especially not like those ones who used to wear skimpy outfits, gyrate lasciviously, and sing a bit).

No, this Saturday is Black Saturday, the single most dangerous day of the year on Britain’s roads. That’s according to CCTV firm Vision Truck who warn that the roads will be literally littered with stressed and distracted drivers.

So, if you do one thing this Saturday make it not getting in your car and driving anywhere in it. Make it staying at home and being thankful you had to good sense to do so.

If you like, you could send us a letter or an email here at Bankstone News to thank us for warning you not to drive anywhere on Black Saturday.

But you won’t do that, will you. We know what you’re like. You’ll get in that ruddy car of yours and drive it just to spite us. Well, more fool you!

That’s your prerogative, of course. Your choice at the end of the day. But if you really must drive then, please don’t be out on the roads at 2pm, because that’s when the blackness of Black Saturday is at its blackest.

It’s the single most dangerous hour of the most dangerous day. You’d honestly better better off playing with water and mains electricity than driving at 2pm tomorrow – although we would strongly recommend you don’t do that either.

July is the top month for serious and/or fatal RTAs with an average total of 2,300 compared with just 1,500 in the depths of winter. And right now is the worst bit of July, because everyone tries to go on holiday at the same time, which is obviously not going to work!

Added to which, Saturday’s are really bad days for getting distracted while driving anyway (1.7 times worse than other days). This is partly because pedestrians dress more provocatively on Saturdays, partly because you’re more likely to have kids and/or animals and/or spouses in the car with you, and partly because you’ve probably been out on the lash on Friday and are still a bit bleary from that.

So, basically, if you know what’s good for you and your family, just stay home tomorrow.

If it means cancelling a holiday, so be it.

Better that than exposing yourself to the menace of so-called Black Saturday.




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