Dunstable motorist stages one-man protest outside Hastings Direct

An angry Dunstable motorist has staged a one-man protest outside an insurance company’s premises.

Grahame Hedgecock, a judo instructor, drove all the way from his home in Bedfordshire to stand outside Hastings Direct in Collington, for a three-day protest last week.

Grahame Hedgecock protesting outside Hastings Direct in Collington.

Grahame Hedgecock protesting outside Hastings Direct in Collington.

He claims the company sold his £15,000 Mercedes SLK in April 2017, without his authorisation, while it was in a garage being repaired two weeks after he ended his insurance policy with Hastings Direct.

Mr Hedgecock’s car was under repair after it had been stolen two months earlier in Dunstable.

He claimed it was damaged further during recovery before it went in for 
repairs.

He said: “I asked Hastings Direct what gave them the right to speak to the garage and sell the car without my authorisation.”

Grahame Hedgecock protesting.

Grahame Hedgecock protesting.

Mr Hedgecock’s MP, Andrew Selous, raised the issue in the House of Commons on October 11 last year, calling for an ‘urgent debate’ and said Mr Hedgecock had suffered a ‘great injustice’.

A Hastings Direct spokesman said: “We’re sorry that Mr Hedgecock has felt it necessary to come to our head office to express his dissatisfaction with the outcome of his claim.

“While we cannot share the detail of Mr Hedgecock’s grievance without his permission, we can confirm that, as you might expect, the circumstances are not as straightforward as may have been suggested.

“We have engaged extensively with Mr Hedgecock and fully explained the reasons for our decision, which has been upheld by the Financial Ombudsman.

“There is no basis on which this decision would be changed.

“Our managing director of insurer services has spoken with Mr Hedgecock at length on many occasions, including outside our offices on Monday, and we will continue to be supportive of Mr Hedgecock where we can.”

The spokesman added: “We have offered him every courtesy, including use of our facilities and refreshments.”