Are Abbey National's ads getting you down? Do you think it's entitled to joke about persistent harassment? : LUSENET : Repossession : One Thread

Is anyone else fed up of Abbey's ads on the television? I sat in front of the box last Monday night 8th Jan, watching part 2 of The Innocents on ITV, when there it was - an Abbey ad seemingly based on the premise of persistent harassment!! (The ex bank manager 'stalks' the tousle-haired Alan Davies, ha ha.) It being about 10pm, I thought I might be dreaming, but no: Abbey really thinks it's OK to joke about unwanted attention and persistent harrassment, apparently.

On top of that, we get the slogan 'Because life's complicated enough'. I should think that this alone is offensive enough to people who have had their lives complicated horribly by Abbey's unsubstantiated 'debt' claims against them.

If, having seen one of these ads, you think that Abbey's making a joke about persistent harassment is in bad taste, and/or if you think Abbey's slogan is a bit rich in the circumstances, please take a minute to email the ITC. You can do this easily via their web site: Once your on the web site, click on 'Contact the ITC'.


-- Eleanor Scott (, January 14, 2001


This ad has been shown on Sky for quite a while now. However, I now see it in a whole new light.

Has anyone else found mortgage lender ads offensive?

-- Catherine Adams (, January 15, 2001.

Oh yikes, I saw it again on Channel Four.

It would be nice to come up with an ad campaign of our own!

-- Eleanor Scott (, January 26, 2001.

Thanks for the supportive private emails I've had about this and various other related matters. Can I just confirm, if a person complains about an ad, whether it be to the ITC (for TV ads) or to the ASA (for printed ads), that their names will not be passed to the company concerned. For example: the ITC, might inform, say, the Bank of Toytown that there have been complaints that its adverts are degrading to little men in red and yellow cars, but the ITC won't give the Bank of Toytown the names, or any personal details, of the people who made those complaints. Hope this helps.

-- Eleanor Scott (, January 28, 2001.

I've just got this reply to my complaint about the advert:

Thank you for contacting us about the above advertising.The ITC has a statutory duty to ensure that television advertising is not misleading in any material way, is not offensive to viewers in general or to a significant proportion of any particular group in society. We also try to ensure that advertising is not itself likely to lead to harm to viewers (particularly to children).

Although I appreciate your strong feeling about the Abbey National advertisement, I am afraid we do not feel there are grounds for ITC intervention. In general, as long as the content of the television advertising complies with our guidelines, the advertiser can promote its product in any way it chooses.

I do understand why you would find the advertisement objectionable and am sorry that we cannot take any further action. Thank you nonetheless for taking the trouble to raise this matter with us.

Yours sincerely Amy Thomas Advertising Complaints Officer

If anyone wants to speak to Amy Thomas here's the contact info: Direct Line: 020 7306 7702 Direct Fax: 020 7306 7717 email:

-- Catherine Adams (, February 15, 2001.

The ASA upheld a three-part complaint against Abbey National in a judgement published, I believe, on the 9th May 2001.


-- Eleanor Scott (, June 17, 2001.

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