Now however, a unique project funded by proceeds of crime money has created a radio show and a punk song to help get the message across that help is available.
Radio Northumberland has created a one hour show which features talented singer songwriter Peter Leithead (Peesh) from Ashington Northumberland and creative poet Beverley Warner (Cherry B) from Harlow in Essex. The show is played regularly on the community radio station.
The unlikely pair met on a TyneIdols punk tour of Newcastle hosted by punk music presenter Keith Newman whose show, New Wave With Newman is one of the station’s flagship productions. Since discovering that their unique style of acoustic punk and poetry has a market amongst people of all ages, the pair have played all across the UK and featured in many festivals including the famous “Rebellion Punk Festival” in Blackpool.
A specially commissioned song penned by Cherry and Peesh entitled “Loan Shark” gives out the message that there are alternatives to using loansharks and that help is always available when needed. The song recently reached a staggering number 10 in the stations top punk songs of all time as voted by the station’s listeners.
Cherry said, “We are so pleased to be able to help get this message out. There are so many people struggling with money these days and we want to warn them not to fall into the trap of loansharks. There’s always an alternative like credit unions who can offer help and support.”
Peesh added: “ This song very sounds up beat but it has a very serious message. It was easy to write as we both believe in what it stands for.”
Loan sharks operate illegally, without the correct permissions from the Financial Conduct Authority. These criminals usually appear friendly at first but quickly trap their borrowers into spiralling debt. As the debts can’t legally be enforced many lenders will resort to the most extreme and callous methods to enforce repayment.
Tony Quigley, Head of Service for the Illegal Money Lending Team, said:
“This project with Radio Northumberland will reach a lot of the people all over the country. It’s a great song with an important message and it’s extremely catchy too so it will stick in people’s heads.
“We would urge anyone who is involved with a loan shark to call us in confidence on 0300 555 2222. For more information and to report a loan shark online, visit www.stoploansharks.uk”