Examination of Witnesses (Questions 38
TUESDAY 15 MAY 2007
Q38 Chairman: Good morning and welcome
to this evidence session. Could you identify yourselves for the
Ms Hitch: I am Susan Hitch; I
am the Chair of Balance for just another couple of weeks.
Ms Lankaster: Patricia Lankaster.
Mr Marchant: Piers Le Marchant.
Mr Thomas: Martin Thomas.
Q39 Chairman: We have 30 minutes
here and we are delighted you have come along to give us evidence.
Could you summarise for us the work in which the Balance Foundation
has been involved and where the idea came from?
Ms Hitch: Balance is a charity
which has existed to set up and test a particular mechanism for
the release of unclaimed assets. We have done it, we have released
a whole lot, we have set up the mechanism and we are now promulgating
it. It came from an idea which Piers, who works for Lehman Brothers,
had, together with Martin Thomas when he was working for the Bank
of England, so I am going to ask them to explain it.
Mr Marchant: The background for
the idea came from my role at Lehman Brothers, where I am European
Legal Director and Managing Director. As part of that role I was
regularly contacted at the end of each year and requested by the
finance department as to whether we could take some of the unclaimed
monies into the balance sheet and therefore the profit and loss