Takings stolen from Chucklehead stall at Lambeth Country Show - crowdfunder launched

Discussion in 'Brixton' started by editor, Jul 22, 2019.

  1. Gromit

    Gromit International Man of Misery

    Small business that may barely make a profit as it is without adding insurance premiums to the cost of an expensive pitch... one might answer.
  2. discobastard

    discobastard edited

    If you don't have insurance then you're nuts. Especially if you are trading publicly. In any case they would be required by Lambeth to have public liability insurance at least. They wouldn't be allowed to trade at the show otherwise (unless Lambeth are *really* disorganised).
    Khmer, Southlondon and Orang Utan like this.
  3. discobastard

    discobastard edited

    if they barely made a profit you might ask why they bother at all. And insurance premiums are spread over a year's trading. Any business would factor this in to their operations. If they can't afford the insurance then they take the risk.

    Nobody is forcing them to pay for the pitch, no business deserves to exist. You take your chances and if you don't have the right safeguards in place then that's the businesses problem.

    Just because Chucklehead are 'approved' doesn't mean that they should get favourable treatment. They are after all making a profit off Lambeth residents, however nice and/or symbolic they might be.

    That said, if they did have insurance and the insurer fucks them then a crowdfunder is great, and a really generous thing to do.
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2019
    urbanspaceman, T & P, Khmer and 3 others like this.
  4. Gromit

    Gromit International Man of Misery

    Depends what their insurer classes as premises. Costs could rise if they add a festival, especially not worth it if they only do one (I don't know how many they do).

    I've worked many festivals and spoken to many vendors who will tell you that it's often a punt.
    Day's 1-2 trading will often only cover costs (pitch rent). Days after that are profit. Rain can fuck that whole equation.
    salem likes this.
  5. editor

    editor hiraethified

    From my conversations with them, I'm very sure that there was no insurance in place because they would have said so. They're a tiny company who said that they were 'traumatised' by the theft and 'got goosebumps' by the subsequent response of people (and the crowdfunder),
    Orang Utan likes this.
  6. Gramsci

    Gramsci Well-Known Member

    Chucklehead have been a fixture of the Country Fair for years.

    I see the editor has started crowdfunder to help support this small business in its hour of need.

    Nice to see some solidarity and support for long-standing small business that has been popular and served the local community rather than questioning their business acumen.
  7. discobastard

    discobastard edited

    Nope. If you do festivals, which they are clearly geared up to do then you get the right insurance. If you choose not to then that's your lookout. And yes, rain can fuck things, but that's the chance you take. That's business. You can't say 'we've had a really expensive year, can you still pay out even though we didn't pay our insurance premium?'

    I'm not downplaying how traumatic it might have been for them, but that's the way it works. Any business that knows what they are doing should have the right policies in place. If I was doing a crowdfunder I'd want to know what the insurance situation was before I got people to hand over cash. And if it's legit, then great.
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2019
    Khmer likes this.
  8. Gromit

    Gromit International Man of Misery

    It almost as if people are suggesting that they should be more like Foxtons.
    Gramsci and editor like this.
  9. editor

    editor hiraethified

    I'm not having you delivering sanctimonious lectures and stirring up shit on this thread, purely because it's me doing the crowdfunding (as evidenced by this "approved" list crap).

    You're banned off this thread.
    andrewdroid, spitfire and Gramsci like this.
  10. Gromit

    Gromit International Man of Misery

    I do festival coaches. Margins can be tight.
    Only remember the firm I've worked for using security the one time.
    It didn't really work out. Was a waste of time and effort and we didn't even submit a bid for the contract the following year.
    We pretty much ditched offering cash at site ticket services and stuck to online sales since.

    There's one exception to that... where once the promoter paid a third party to do the cash at site and we just did the transport.
  11. Orang Utan

    Orang Utan razzed up on scrumpy and injustice

    Fair dos all, but I don't have a lot of spare cash. Love Chucklehead, best of luck to them.
    If a big bank could pay for all of this instead of a cash-strapped public, it would be better all round, wouldn't it?
  12. skyscraper101

    skyscraper101 0891 50 50 50

    This is some small time cider firm, not Carlsberg ffs. Have a heart.
  13. editor

    editor hiraethified

    Yes it would. But it's not going to happen so it's up to those people who want them to return to the Country Show next year to at least try and make a gesture of positive support. The crowdfunder won't come even remotely close to what they've lost, but judging by the phone call I had this morning, it means an awful lot to them.

    For what it's worth, they told me that they'd been naive, but perhaps all those security guards and the big wall lulled them into a false sense of security.
    Gramsci and salem like this.
  14. skyscraper101

    skyscraper101 0891 50 50 50

    Despite the inevitable fees, there's certainly something to be said for offering cashless/tap to pay these days if you're a small trader at a festival - or any trader for that matter.
    editor likes this.
  15. editor

    editor hiraethified

    I imagine that if they come back next year they would be a priority! I really hope they can keep coming back after this loss - the show really wouldn't be the same without them.

    And just to put their size of their operation in perspective, this is what their website says to visitors:


    Gramsci likes this.
  16. salem

    salem Well-Known Member

    This is terrible news.

    This quite positive story has a few quotes from them and it sounds like fortunately it was a case of the takings being snatched rather than anything more physical. But yeah having been to a few festivals with a family business before it's easy to see how such a thing happens, festival are long and hard work and it's easy to let your guard down after a long day - especially when you expect a site to be well secured.

    It's unlikely that insurance will cover takings in any meaningful way. There is all sorts of small print about how you need to keep cash accounted for, locked up, transported etc which aren't necessarily practicable at a festival. Direct Line for example it's an optional cover cost and even if you meet all their criteria covers a max of £1000 at a festival.

    Also as well as the cost of them attending and producing the cider, I suspect they'll still have to pay the duty and VAT on what they sold.
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2019
    Gramsci, Nanker Phelge and editor like this.
  17. Gromit

    Gromit International Man of Misery

    VAT and income tax covered under shrinkage I'd hope.
  18. ricbake

    ricbake working out how

    From this story...
    "We were all there when it happened but these guys are organised and clever and must have been somewhere watching what we did with the takings, probably for all day. That part of it is quite creepy"
    Hundreds of people take photos of the Chucklehead tents, if the above is right perhaps there are pictures of the offenders, editor can you get some more detail, perhaps Urban can turn detective...
    Saturday at 16:02
  19. Smick

    Smick Strictly Second Class

    I have to agree somewhat with what discobastard is saying. Lovely as the people may be, it's a commercial enterprise, not a charity, and they need to protect themselves from the various risks that businesses face. If some twist of fate had had them come away with far more than they had expected, would they put that money back into our community?

    Looking at the photo above, I presume they have some card acceptance in the left queue, so it won't be that their entire takings have gone. If they did 50% cash, 50% card on both days, so 25% of their gross was stolen, could they be able to cover all costs from the remaining 75%? Are people happy to contribute to a crowdfunder to replenish stolen profits? Ordinarily it is none of our business as to how much they make, or don't, but when they are accepting charity then people start to ask what it is for.

    I think I'd prefer for Urban to promote their online sales and help them replace lost profit through trade rather than just giving them some cash.
    Khmer likes this.
  20. salem

    salem Well-Known Member

    The fundraiser is for £500, it's not going to be replacing any profit at that level. More a nod of appreciation and goodwill to a bunch who have been a nice alternative to the usual festival bar mob.
    Orang Utan, brixtonblade and editor like this.
  21. Smick

    Smick Strictly Second Class

    Would 75% of their takings cover 100% of their costs?

    The crowdfunder might not replace all the profit, but if Saturday's card takings and Sunday's combined takings have covered the costs, then all the crowdfunder does is give money from the pockets of patrons straight into the pockets of the business owners with nothing in return.

    I am going to take a look at putting in an online order with a friend. The best way you can encourage businesses is to trade with them.
    Khmer and sparkybird like this.
  22. sparkybird

    sparkybird ask the bird...

    I didn't actually make it to the County Show this year so managed to escape the Chucklehead Hangover, for this I'm making a donation of what I would have spent.
    I do agree with Smick and discobastard ( why the ban?!?), that as a business you are aware of the risks and it's your choice at the end of the day. Terrible thing to happen though and a £500 fundraiser is more a show of solidarity than a replacement of profits. Thanks editor for setting it up
    Khmer, Orang Utan and Smick like this.
  23. Guineveretoo

    Guineveretoo Mostly bewildered

    I don't drink cider and didn't go to the Country Show this year, but I have just donated a fiver because of it being a small business etc. Some people on these boards seem to object to people making a living!

    The story evoked memories of when that storage facility near Ikea Croydon burnt down not long ago - several small businesses were forced to close because they lost all their stock. People then talked about how they should have had insurance etc. etc. but, if you are a small business struggling to make enough money to survive, insurance premiums for festival cover, as in this case, can be extortionate and make it not worth having. I suspect they have done a risk assessment and determined that the risk is worth taking because, if they paid the additional insurance premium against theft, they would potentially make a loss if, say, it rained on the day so they sold less cider. Or maybe the cost would have reduced their profit by so much that it wasn't worth their while to come.
    blairsh, Gramsci, zora and 1 other person like this.
  24. Ted Striker

    Ted Striker Foot's on the other hand

    Cash (in transit) insurance is incredibly (relatively) expensive. I'd be amazed if they had it tbh. (They would have Liability (public and employee) Insurance as a legal requirement)
    spitfire and editor like this.
  25. Monkeygrinder's Organ

    Monkeygrinder's Organ Dodgy geezer swilling vapid lager

    Unfortunately the answer is likely to be to go card only. I'd expect to see more and more of that in future.
  26. editor

    editor hiraethified

    Chucklehead just sent me this:

  27. Southlondon

    Southlondon The river's there for a reason

    It’s always horrible to hear when a small company has been robbed, but they always had massive queues at their stall and they are at loads of festivals through the year so hopefully their business model will be robust enough to stand something like this. Their public business profile shows them as holding net cash reserves of over 50k so I. Not too sure why people are so concerned at this theft that they want to donate to this buisness compensate for a loss which at the very least will be set against taxes. If they had left cash on site over night then they were negligent. They are very experienced festival traders and I’m sure this loss won’t put them out of business. I’d rather donate any spare cash I might have to charities rather than profitable buisnesses
    Khmer, oryx and Orang Utan like this.
  28. editor

    editor hiraethified

    It's an entirely voluntary gesture of support and solidarity to a long time supporter of the Country Show - which is the biggest event they do by miles (they usually do small agricultural events etc).

    I know from conversations I've had with them in the past that the show is a big gamble for them and they've struggled with Lambeth's rising rents and being compelled to increase their prices in response. If this gesture is one that helps make them return next year, then it's money well spent, IMO.
  29. Southlondon

    Southlondon The river's there for a reason

    They’re a company that’s been trading for 9 years and operates at many festivals all over the country each year. They are a professional outfit and any buisness that operates on a cash basis should be taking precautions to protect that cash, but end of the day losses due to theft can be set against tax
    Khmer likes this.
  30. Southlondon

    Southlondon The river's there for a reason

    Do they donate any of their profits to charity? They are a profitable private buisness at the end of the day and losses to theft are tax deductible

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