Bad day at the office 13

On a training run for Sunday’s 5K, Cleopatra LeGrande, boss of UK Cash Cowboys, tells Ainsley Fibber about winning in a man’s world

On a training run for Sunday’s Bitchfield 5K, Cleopatra LeGrande, boss of UK Cash Cowboys, tells Ainsley Fibber about winning in a man’s world

Life’s a marathon: The Bitchfield 5k 2015: UK Cash Cowboys’ Cleopatra LeGrande on how she persuaded BNP thug Barry ‘the persuader’ Coalman to race with her

The Bitchfield Evening Standard’s Ainsley Fibber caught up (literally, the lanky six footer was running in her training gear) with UK Cash Cowboys’ fascist CEO Cleopatra LeGrande during a last-minute training run at 6.20am this  morning, on the cobblestones of the city of Edinburgh, where she lives in one of her £10 million mansions. LeGrande is in training for the 2015 Bitchfield 5k which takes place tomorrow. It’s the biggie, with 35,000 athletes, celebrities and fun runners from all over the world descending on the tiny Lincolnshire village, along with the world’s media.  Headlining this year’s event are former Marathon star and Olympic athlete Paula Dumpit and F1 racing driver Lotus Zip.

I asked LeGrande why UK Cash Cowboys, who have a 5 year sponsorship deal with the Bitchfield 5k, were supporting the event. “Why do you think, sweetheart? Because we want to sell loads of shit to our customers, so I can become stinking rich. I mean, who in their right mind is going to buy one of our pensions or insurance policies, they’re absolute rubbish. So what you do is support some good cause like the Bitchfield 5k that’s going to get you a lot of good PR in the press, and bingo, before you know it you’ve got ISAs flying off the shelves like shit off a Teflon-coated shovel.”

LeGrande was keen to talk about her running partners for the Bitchfield 5k, the BNP spokesman for bullying issues, Barry ‘the persuader’ Coalman, and her training partner, reformed bank robber and violent criminal Frank Nutter, who she’d managed to get sprung from prison to run in the event.

“I bunged the warder a pony and told him either Frankie walked or he would find out for himself how difficult it was to walk on broken legs. The warder, that is. And Frankie’s like, ‘tops Cleo, I fort I was down for a twenty stretch there. Let me know if you need anyone sorting out at UK Cash Cowboys, and they won’t cause you any bovver any more, you with me?’ Cheers Frankie, I told him, I’ll bear that in mind. So it turned out to be a right win-win. Of course, as soon as Bazza heard Frankie was on the outside, he signed up for the Bitchfield 5k too. He wants to talk about a little rumble Frank’s got going on in Hatton Garden, but I can’t say too much about it, yeah? Suffice to say, the 5k is a great cover. We can go over the planning and shit while we’re jogging round Bitchfield, smiling at the cameras, and the world will think we’re supporting lepers in Africa or something, while really we’ll be planning a nice little earner. Bosh.”

When I asked LeGrande how she’d fallen in with two notorious criminals, and didn’t she think they were rather unconventional bedfellows for the CEO of a high street bank to be associating with, she was unequivocal in her reply. “Shows how much you know about running a bank, sweetheart. I learned everything I know about business from those guys. I’ve heard people say the way to build a successful business is to be nice to people. Complete bollocks. Five minutes watching those guys go to work in a bar-room brawl soon puts you right on that score. You be nice to people, they take the piss. You get your retaliation in first, you with me? Do some right damage, then nobody ever fucks with you again, ever. Job done. I’m talking next level thinking here. I learned from Frank and Barry that the best way to run a successful mob is to terrorise the shit out of everyone. Staff, suppliers, their families. Make sure everyone knows who the fuck you are, and they don’t forget it in a hurry. At UK Cash Cowboys staff are either with the programme, or not, if I can put it like that. If they’re not on my bus, they go under it. That’s how I run my companies, with steel. With blackjacks and baseball bats. Workers’ rights? Fuck off. Fear, intimidation, bullying, exploitation and slave wages, that’s what I learned in business school. But the good thing about events like the Bitchfield 5k is it makes me look like some pussy patron saint of good causes who people think must be the most philanthropical CEO to work for, ha ha. Fuck it, I say, if they’re dumb enough to swallow that shit I’m happy to smile for the cameras then take my staff round the back of the office and give them a right good kicking in the alleyway, where no-one can see. Why you looking at me like that? Wanna do something about it? Well do you? Do you actually know who Barry Coalman’s associates are? Then take that stupid look off your face, unless you’d like to become more intimately acquainted with Barry’s friends.“

As we trudged along Princes Street, I asked LeGrande if her fascist style of running a business has brought UK Cash Cowboys success, and what we might expect from the challenger bank in 2015. “Nosey bastard aren’t you,” she said. “Let me tell you, bullying and intimidation works, period. Profits have never been higher. If you pay someone 90p to make a widget you sell for a quid, that’s only 10p profit. Meh. But if you chain them to the desk, slap them around a bit and tell them to make them for 1p, or their kids die, that’s 99p profit. Keynesian economics, sweetheart. It’s not my fault I was born more intelligent and important than everyone else. It’s all about the pecking order, and people understanding their position in life. Not everyone can be at the top. If people think I don’t deserve five million in bonuses, come and have a go, I say, if you think you’re hard enough. Next fucking question, and it better be a nice one.”

I asked her what her favourite colour was.

“Red,” she said, without a hint of irony. “The colour of blood. It reminds me of a slacker we had to take care of in Marketing last year. Well, I say slacker, he forgot to curtsey when he passed me in the corridor one time, the cheeky cunt. And he had the audacity to ask for a 1% pay rise when he’d already had one five years ago. Listen dickhead, I told him, how the fuck do you expect me to trouser my £5 million bonus next year if greedy cunts like you keep asking for 1% pay rises? Don’t you know there’ a recession on? You should be grateful you’ve even got a job licking the dogshit off my running shoes in the first place. Then I got Barry and Frank to take him round the back and give him his personal end-of-year appraisal, and some one to one feedback on his performance. Basically that’s the technical term for beating his face to a bloody pulp with knuckledusters and tyre irons. Looked like he’d been in a car crash when they’ve finished. Real craftsmen are Barry and Frank, you don’t see their like anymore. Not in high street banking, anyway. Won’t get any more shit about pay rises from that little jumped up piece of shit, you with me? Yeah, my favourite colour is red. Like our logo. Hold up, shhh, look smart, photographers up ahead. Hi there! Lovely day isn’t it! Let’s hope we get sunshine for the big race tomorrow, so we can raise lots of money for all the children and the poor people, and make the world a better place! Love to everyone! Cheese!”




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Bad day at the office 11

General Election 2015: UK Bank CEO Cleopatra LeGrande wants a strong leader who will back bullying

Cleopatra LeGrande General Election

Cleopatra LeGrande is chief executive of UK Cash Cowboys

 Every day until the final week of the election campaign Jeremy Trough, Political Editor at The Daily Profit, asks a business leader to say what politics would entice them to vote for a particular party.


CLEOPATRA LEGRANDE, CEO UK CASH COWBOYS: “I will vote for the party who has the most ruthless leader. A psycho, basically. Callous, cold-hearted despotism is essential for success – whether in business, crime or politics. I want to be represented by a total bastard who couldn’t give a toss what people think about them, both at home and on the world stage. And I desperately want a leader who will represent the few – not the many – in a greedy, cut-throat, pitiless United Kingdom.”

JEREMY TROUGH: “So more tax breaks for millionaires then?”

CLEOPATRA LEGRANDE: “Quite. It is also important to have a government which will champion sadistic, iron-fisted business leaders like myself, and encourage bullying and intimidation in all sectors. I want a government brave enough to repeal the slavery act and the minimum working wage, tackle all this nonsense about equal opportunities and paternity leave. Oh, and treble tuition fees for working class students, so we take a broom to the low-life plebs clogging up our universities. Education should be for rich, arrogant people like me who are in a position to use it to maximum advantage. And so end once and for all, the anti-competitive, altruistic cancer eating away at Banks’ profits. I mean, a fair day’s work for a fair day’s pay? What creepy little PC turd came up with that bunch of crap? Gandhi? Get a life, for Christ’s sake. The truth is we cannot afford not to introduce despotism if we really want world class bullying that works for bank bosses like me, my cronies and filthy rich people in general, like our Chairman Sir Rich Pickle.”

JEREMY TROUGH: “I’m guessing that rules out the Lib Dems then.”

CLEOPATRA LEGRANDE: “Is that supposed to be some kind of joke? You only have to look at their logo, it’s like someone’s chucked up on the pavement, and nobody’s going anywhere near it. When they talk about fairness to me, they’re radioactive. I will vote for you only if you put terrifying, remorseless greed at the heart of all you do. With policies that ensure a strong and growing salary and bonus package for bank CEOs, with a tax regime and immigration policy that lets me absolutely treat my staff like concentration camp trash. I think we can destroy health, education and the other deeply wasteful public services that are a drain on my personal wealth, absolutely, yes. Next question.”

JEREMY TROUGH: “What do you think about the Conservatives manifesto pledge to reward more cut-throat, sadistic leaders like yourself with awards in the New Years’ Honours List?”

CLEOPATRA LEGRANDE: “Well, it’s progress obviously. Next level thinking. I think those kinds of forward-thinking policies are essential for a thriving economy. Feel my face, that’s stubble, that is. I didn’t get my CBE by tickling employees under the chin, big boy. I got it by destroying their lives. Squashing them flat. Humiliating them. Working them til they dropped and rubbing their faces in the dirt. Government policies should incentivise a bullying culture across all disciplines from senior bank management to internet trolls. That means encouraging vindictive, callous management practices by people from a wide range of backgrounds. It also means investing in staff demoralisation, indoctrination, disengagement and alienation, to address slackers and get the engine room of my massive salary firing.”

JEREMY TROUGH: “You are notorious for imposing impossible performance targets on your staff, for suppressing their pay and bonuses, and generally treating them like low-paid vermin while giving the impression that you’re actually a caring employer. Would you vote for a party which endorsed those kind of two-faced, double-standards?”

CLEOPATRA LEGRANDE: “Absolutely. But Christ, which party? I mean, you can’t put a cigarette paper between them when it comes to double-speak. I say, let’s find a way to tackle fair pay across the UK. A generation of young people have grown up thinking work should be fun and they should be paid a fair whack if they work hard. Complete bollocks. Clearly changes are needed to the bullying system and more can be done to exploit first time employees. I feel privileged to work in a banking sector and a country where bullying can be practiced openly and where we can vote against issues such as human rights and personal dignity. And in the end I want a government which lives by the knuckleduster and the jackboot. Only by cleansing ourselves of the weak and the poor in positions of power or responsibility can we make this country great again. This seems to me where true leadership and true integrity lie.”

JEREMY TROUGH: “So you’ll be voting Conservative then?”

CLEOPATRA LEGRANDE: “At least the Tories know how to keep the scum in their place and look after rich billionaires like me. Scrapping inheritance tax, for instance, brilliant idea. I own property all over the shop and have billions stuffed in offshore bank accounts. When I pop my clogs I want my kids to be like pigs in shit, not for all the riches I’ve spent my lifetime bleeding people dry to acquire, wasted on garbage like social services and education for the poor. For fuck’s sake.”

JEREMY TROUGH: “So Ed needn’t hold his breath on your vote then?”

CLEOPATRA LEGRANDE: “Is he really a person? Or a waxwork dummy wired up to a cliché generator? Higher tax rates for the rich? Mansion taxes? Show some imagination, Ed. Same old classic mean-spirited commy dirty tricks to rob the rich and feed the scum. What sort of cunt does he take us for? How am I supposed to keep my private jet and fleet of limousines for my personal use on the road? Those things don’t run themselves you know. I tell you, if red Ed the teenage mutant gets in and starts wading into bankers’ bonuses and obscene profits and shit like that, if he’s not careful I’ll have to pass all his extra taxes on to customers, through higher charges, fees and commissions. You start eating into my massive personal wealth, buddy, we are going to war mate, make no mistake. You will not believe how nuclear I can go. Don’t worry though, I’ll get my accountant Dave to fix it. He’ll sort it. We headhunted him from the EU.”

JEREMY TROUGH: “Okay, so we’ve established you’re voting Conservative. Any advice you’d give David Cameron about areas the Tories can do better on?”

CLEOPATRA LEGRANDE: “I’m not happy about this raising the minimum wage nonsense. Every penny extra I have to pay my employees is a penny off my multi-million pound bonus at the end of the year. What kind of incentive is that for talented despots like me to run businesses in UK plc, if we can’t screw our own employees? Brain drain? You ain’t seen nothing pal. They might change their tune when we’ve all left, switched off the lights and all they’ve got left is the scum running the country. See what that does for your GDP.”


CLEOPATRA LEGRANDE: “Plebs, working class, ordinary people. Scum.

JEREMY TROUGH: “You mean, like your employees?”

CLEOPATRA LEGRANDE: “Your words, not mine. But since you mention it, yeah. I’m the big cheese around this bank. I’m the brains behind all the important decisions, got that? Nobody dies without my say so. It’s me who has to bang heads together when aggressive sales targets aren’t met, and heads need to roll. When profits fall and my end of year bonus is under threat, someone’s got to sack family breadwinners, break up homes and encourage feelings of hopelessness and despair. It’s a tough world out there. I’m not running a bloody charity here. You fuck with my money and I’ll turn your bloody lights out.”

JEREMY TROUGH: “Since you mention charity, what about your charitable arm, UK Cash Cowboys Giving? And your new company strapline, Everyone’s Getting On. Isn’t that supposed to include employees, customers, society, good causes, the environment…?”

CLEOPATRA LEGRANDE: “Sweetheart, watch my lips. Two words. Public relations. You think I really give a mouse’s fart about good causes? Ask any of my employees, they’ll tell you what I’m really like. A complete and utter ruthless bastard. You know who’s picture I have hanging on the wall of my office?”

JEREMY TROUGH: “Churchill? JFK?”

CLEOPATRA LEGRAND: “Heinrich Himmler. Let ‘em bloody work for their soup, I say, like every other pleb. When I see someone begging on the street I think, bring back flogging and National Service. Corporal punishment would be too good for some of these parasites. I’d sort the buggers out, never mind all this free hand outs crap. Still, I suppose it’s good for the brand so I shouldn’t knock it. If it wins us a few extra customers and keeps the cash register ringing, every cloud as they say.”

JEREMY TROUGH: “I should have thought with all the PR your bank has been putting out about environmental responsibility, you’d at least be supporting a greener agenda.”

CLEOPATRA LEGRANDE: “Ha ha ha. The Greens? What’s that all about, windmills? Ha ha. Lol, as they say. Don’t, you’ll give me the giggles. C’mon love, get real. Wake up and smell the Frappuccino. Twenty-first Century, hello? What am I supposed to fly my private jet on, fresh air? Sod that. Green means higher taxes sweetheart. Higher taxes are bad for business, and bad for my personal fortune. Who needs the rainforests anyway? You can have ‘em. Waste of good car-parking revenue. Do you know where I can pick one up cheap?”

JEREMY TROUGH: “Politicians have been talking a lot about ‘red lines’ in this election campaign. Do you have any personal red lines?”

CLEOPATRA LEGRANDE: “Tax havens and tax loopholes for the rich are an absolute deal-breaker for me. That’s a purple line that is, with flashing lights and a klaxon. I’ll say it again. Fuck with my banker’s bonus and I’ll kill you and eat your children.”

JEREMY TROUGH: “Which brings us neatly to UKIP. Breath of fresh air or a bunch of right-wing bigots?”

CLEOPATRA LEGRANDE: “They have some good ideas, like closing down the NHS and sending all those scrounging foreigners back.”

JEREMY TROUGH: “You’d support closing down the NHS, really? Isn’t that a sacred cow in the eyes of the public?”

CLEOPATRA LEGRANDE: “No good to me, is it? I’m the CEO of a bank, love. I’ve got more health insurance than I know what to do with. I always go private. Biggest drain of all on the public purse, is the NHS. It pisses literally billions up the wall every year, for what? Giving poor people cancer treatment and heart transplants? They cost an arm and a leg those things. Let ‘em die, I say, and cut the pension burden at the same time. The fewer old people you have, the faster you can shrink the welfare state, scrap the higher tax bands and raise net take home pay for senior bank executives like me. It’s a no-brainer.”

JEREMY TROUGH: “Can I pick up on your reference to sending all the scrounging foreigners back home…”

CLEOPATRA LEGRANDE: “Well, first off I believe, like UKIP, in an Australian-style points system of immigration. We shouldn’t be letting all these talented bankers, nurses and business entrepreneurs into the country. There’s only so many fat million-pound bonuses to go round. No, we should only be letting in cheap and nasty foreign mercenaries from Eastern Europe who’ll basically work 23 hours a day on half a slice of bread for ten pee a week. I personally exploit thousands of the fuckers in our call centres in Newcastle, Edinburgh and Chelmsford. Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth, what. They can’t speak a word of English mind, but Christ do they know how to extort money out of our customers. Brutal, they are. I’ve already promoted Stanislaw to my Board as Director of Money Laundering and Internet Fraud. Big guy with a crew cut, scar across his left cheek. Lives on raw potatoes and cardboard. These are the kind of talented thugs we need to get this country back on its knees.”

JEREMY TROUGH: “Wow, radical.”

CLEOPATRA LEGRANDE: “But UKIP are right, we definitely need to address all the benefit and health tourism as an absolute priority. Did you know that for every African who comes over here with HIV, it takes twenty-five grand a pop to treat them? That’s coming out of my pay packet that is. Foreign scum. Every grand I pay extra in tax is a person I have to lay off, and double the hours of the remaining staff. As for your foreign aid budget, you know where you can shove that. Until we can properly reward high-powered bank executives in our own country we shouldn’t be squandering money keeping foreign trash alive abroad. Let them eat worms, I say. It’s good for their immunity. Ebola? Do I look like I have Ebola? Fucking foreigners.”

JEREMY TROUGH: “But isn’t your husband foreign?”

CLEOPATRA LEGRANDE: “What did you just say?”

JEREMY TROUGH: “I, I just said, isn’t your husband Indian?”

CLEOPATRA LEGRANDE: “Did you just use the ‘N’ word about my husband?”


CLEOPATRA LEGRANDE: “Right, that’s it, I’m having you. Where’s my solicitor’s number?”

JEREMY TROUGH: “Mrs LeGrande, I only said…”

CLEOPATRA LEGRANDE: “Okay, listen up. I’ll say this once and I won’t repeat it. I want five hundred grand in used notes, stuffed inside a duffle bag, left on top of the litter bin at the junction of Eagle Place and Jermyn Street at nine o’clock in the morning. Do I make myself clear? This conversation never happened.”


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Why the Tories can never win the next election

Royal Mail axes collections


In October 2013 this pathetic excuse for a government sold off the Royal Mail to big business, like some down-at-heel aristocrat with a heroin habit flogging off the last of the family silver for his next fix. The hit it gave was fleeting, and the sale ultimately benefited the great British public not one jot. The £3.3billion it made disappeared straight into the black hole of government debt, waste and economic mis-management. Actually, it was worse than that. Because the government can’t even add up, they sold the Royal Mail at a vastly undervalued price, which by April 2014 had already COST British taxpayers £2.3billion. That’s what city investors and friends of this bunch of Eton toffs made out of their nice little earner. Thanks, Dave. Or perhaps we should call you Maggie Thatcher 2.0. The man without a soul, or principles.

The lie that’s always trotted out by apologists of privatisation is that private capital is needed to keep improving the service. But anyone who’s watched their gas and electricity bills soar into outer space in the decades since privatisation, increasing by literally thousands of percent, or seen their rail service get worse while the price of a ticket could feed a family of four for a week, will know that privatisation is all about lining the pockets of big business, plain and simple. So let’s not dress it up with all this privatisation means investment means progress bullshit. A state-owned industry can invest and develop just as well as a privately owned one. It’s just the same money slushing around in different pockets.

The true cost to the British people of a once loved and valued mail service being sold down the river is now becoming clearer, as the picture above shows. Less than a year after the Royal Mail was privatised, notices have begun appearing on post-boxes in villages like the one where I live in Forncett, Norfolk, giving notice that the level of service we have enjoyed for years is about to be consigned to history.

If you can’t read it from the picture, here is what the notice says:


Dear Customer,

In order to provide our customers with the best possible service we are continually reviewing our mail collection service. Part of this on going activity involves occasionally revising collection times from Postboxes.

From Monday 4th August the final collection time from this Postbox will be 12:00 on a Monday to Friday and 10:30 on Saturday.

After this date, should you require a later collection in the area, later collections are available from the following

Norwich Road, Tacolneston at 17:00

A later collection facility is also available from the following location:

Wymondham Delivery Office, 18 Middleton Street at 18:00

If you have any concerns you should contact our Customer Services Team on 08457 740740.

Yours sincerely

Ben Cook

Royal Mail

Wymondham Delivery Office

18 Middleton Street


NR18 0AA

Tel: 01953 617854

Now, anyone who looks at the picture will notice that since time immemorial the last collection from my local postbox has always been at 4:30pm. And at the risk of sounding pedantic, I’m really struggling to work out exactly how cutting the number of daily collections in half, and bringing the last collection time forward four and a half hours to midday, equates to providing me and the other residents of Forncett with “the best possible service”. Or am I just being dumb?

As if that wasn’t annoying enough, the badly-worded letter (someone at Royal Mail should inform its copywriters that ‘on going’ is all one word, not even privatisation can change that) then goes on to tell us that later collections will take place at other postboxes at Tacolneston and Wymondham, miles from here. Great, thanks. Well woo fucking hoo for Tacolneston and Wymondham. What good is that to an old age pensioner or someone without a car or other means of transport in Forncett? What about the village’s self-employed small traders who used to depend on that last post? Do they take us for imbeciles, these con-men? Are they stupid, or is it that they just don’t care, because they know we can’t do a damn thing about it?

So thanks, David Cameron and Nick Clegg, for helping destroy our postal service. Just pray that you never grow old or fall on hard times. Or have to live in a rural village when you’ve no longer got your tax-payer funded servants and armour-plated jags to pop your letters to the next village for you. Dear god, what a bunch of crooks and charlatans our politicians have become. When they’re not fiddling expenses they’re lining their own pockets by looking after their friends in the city, on whose boards they’ll no doubt pop up one day. We expect it of big business. We know they don’t give a damn for anyone except themselves and their greedy lust for ever greater profits. Just so many fat pigs with their snouts in the trough. But our politicians? The people we elected to office to serve us? We expected better from them of all people. If they won’t look out for us, who will?

Bring on the revolution, I say. I’ve had it with this lot. Tories, Lib Dems, Labour, you can’t put a cigarette paper between them these days. Just a bunch of centre-ground carpet-baggers who’d sell their souls to stay in power. Not a conviction politician in sight. They make Dennis Skinner look like Gladstone. All they’re good for is soundbites and spin, and empty posturing on the world stage, trying to get us into foreign wars that are no business of ours, at great cost in money and lives. Not one of the whole sorry bunch represent me anymore, or the things I really care about. The once-great NHS has been almost destroyed, as has the Education system, once the envy of the western world, which teachers are now deserting in their droves, over-worked, underpaid and under-valued. No wonder voters are increasingly turning to parties like UKIP, whose leader Nick Farage resembles the nearest thing we have to a ‘conviction’ party leader these days. At least you get the impression that he actually means what he says, even if you don’t agree with it. As for the mainstream parties, you wouldn’t trust them as far as you could spit them. Soon as they get into power they renege on all their promises. Well, they try to belittle UKIP as a mere protest vote. My answer to that is, you bet your ass it’s a protest vote. And until you get the message that if you keep doing shit to people that the people don’t like, eventually you’re going to get some shit coming back the other way. Give me back my Post Office, you thieving shits, or you’re toast at the next election.

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