Footman James have long had a special relationship with the Morris Minor Owners Club, and are the club’s ‘preferred’ insurer. Members get discounted premiums over standard policies in return for quoting their MMOC number, and additional services like quoting for your modern car too, etc. They have a direct contact, Dave Youngs, who is a member of the MMOC and is able to offer help and advice in dealing with any problems, and there are two dedicated phone numbers at Footman James office for MMOC members which get them straight through to staff who are knowledgeable about the scheme as opposed to general call centre staff (New Business: 0844 875 0588 and Renewal Queries: 0843 357 1234).
They will be holding an Open Day on Tuesday 5th November, at their offices at Waterfall Lane, Cradley Heath, West Midlands (postcode for SatNav users is B64 6PU) where we’ll be able to meet some of the staff, and let them see some of the cars they cover. This event was announced at the recent Branch Liaison Meeting in Lutterworth during the ‘Q&A session’ that Footman James do at each meeting and was met favourably within the room with a number of people promising to come. I’ll be there too (but don’t let that put you off 🙂 ) and hope to be in my modified Traveller, although since it has already started its winter work programme at A-Series Spares I can’t yet be sure that it will be finished in time. Any MMOC members are welcome, but Dave Youngs does want to have a rough idea of numbers beforehand so that he can get sufficient sausage rolls in (plus my tea urn!). I don’t yet know how we’re to notify them we’d like to attend but I’ll update this page when that info becomes available.
I think it would be fair to say that Footman James have had a tricky 2013, which those of you on the show scene may have heard about in random conversations. A few people had considerable rises in their premium over previous years that they couldn’t account for, and especially for those like me with modified Minors some found that FJ had opted not to quote for their business at renewal time. More personally to me, we had a claim running over a particularly painful breakdown recovery in Italy with my pal Bruce Kelsey which wasn’t progressing well. (Update: I’m hugely pleased to say though that that claim has now been resolved, and to be completely fair wasn’t Footman James’ fault in the first place, but rather AXA as the insurer. Dave Youngs helped us rationalise and properly detail our claim for losses from AXA and proved a great help in eventually solving the issue.) At our last liaison meeting Dave Youngs explained that new interpretations from the underwriters coupled with some new staff had combined to create some confusion about what changes to standard specification were permitted, and that there was a brief period when some of the refusals to quote could be wrong. Of course, he was always available to help in individual instances and resubmit which would usually overcome the issue. More recently he’d worked with the underwriters direct and created a list of all the ‘usual’ modifications Morris Minor owners do, like disk brakes, interior upgrades, 5-speed gearboxes, 1275 engines, etc. and owners of vehicles with these mods should now be able to get quotes without problems.