Category Archives: Random

This Blog has Moved


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Good grief, it’s been a while!

I am currently overhauling the company website  and blog, but they will probably be divergent for a few more weeks, (these things always take longer than anticipated) as obviously client work has to take first priority.  I do hope to get back on track (erm, but I know that I’ve said that before). 

In the meantime, I’ve finally joined Twitter, which you should also be able to see from the feed on the right.  So, I’ve had a bit of fun setting that up (no, really, I have).  I wish I’d done it sooner!  Many of the bloggers that I’ve blogrolled, are now also on Twitter, and I’ll probably post more about this at a later date.

A couple of blogs seem to have been deleted altogether and one or two have moved or changed direction.   It looks like I’ll have to update my blogroll…


While updating my bloglines button, I stumbled across a website by a South African accountant.  Nothing unusual so far apart from his content is almost entirely copied from my company’s old website, which is also still live.

Now, I don’t mean that he’s just borrowed the odd bit here and there.  I mean he has copied every page verbatim only pausing to subsitute his name and address.

There is something surreal about seeing your own content copied entirely on a website on a different continent and I would be flattered by this ultimate compliment, where it not for the fact that…

  • I spent long hours writing that website content.
  • I’m not sure he even read it properly before he copied it, as some of the content only applies to the UK.

All of this lead me to the question of proving copyright, particularly on the internet.  A quick internet search led me to this useful post, it’s from a year ago but still relevent.  I’m grateful especially for their link to which is an archive of the internet and in my case, proves that my website was in place in 2007, while his is not even catalogued yet.

A Day in the Life of an Accountant

What do accountants actually do?  Well, accountants are everywhere.  Even on YouTube!
This is for any student who may be reading this – although, caution is needed, as the clip is American some content is not relevent to the UK.

Junk Mail

As soon as you list your business in directories and telephone books, register a limited company or otherwise publicise your business, it can generate an overwhelming amount of unsolicited mail and cold-calling.

It has been possible for some time, to register a residential address and telephone number for the mail preference service and telephone preference service.  Companies must check that the addresses/telephone numbers are not registered in these databases before making contact.  Therefore, registering for MPS and TPS can drastically cut down on the amount of unsolicited mail and telephone calls.  Both services are completely free, so don’t pay anyone who says they will do it for you!

It is also now possible to make a corporate registration for the telephone preference service (although, if you work from home and your home number is already registered, you cannot register it again for the corporate service)

Get Human

For anyone frustrated by automated call-centres and endless “touch-tone” menu options, this great site,, shows you how to get through to a proper human being.

Say no to 0870

… and other non-geographic numbers.

In recent years, more and more companies have been moving to “non-geographic” numbers (generally with a dialing code starting with 05 and 08, or worse still, a premium number which begins with 09).

If you have an inclusive tarif which means that all calls to geographical landlines are “free” (well, included in the standing charge), you may be charged extra (sometimes a premium) for calls to non-geographic numbers such as 0845, 0890 numbers.

There is always an underlying “geographic” landline number beneath the “non geographic” one.  Some organisations will give this number out, on request.  Unfortunately, some organisations (shamefully, this includes HMRC) will not give out the underlying geographic landline number that “underlies” the non-geographic number.  Personally, I am not sure why a company would want to put off its customers/potential customers in this way, but that is another debate.

However, at there is a growing database of corresponding geographic landline numbers.  It is possible to search for an alternative number by either company name or by non-geographic number and find the underlying geographic number.  It is also possible to add your own entry should you discover an underlying geographical number that isn’t already listed.

A quick guide to UK dialing codes:

  • 01 geographic landline code
  • 02 geographic landline code
  • 03 non-geographic code (charged at or below rates for geographic numbers)
  • 0500 national freephone numbers
  • 055 corporate numbers
  • 07 radio, personal or mobile numbers
  • 0800, 0808 national freephone numbers
  • 0844 non-geographic numbers (up to 5p/min from BT landline)
  • 0845 non-geographic numbers (up to 4p/min from BT landline)
  • 0870 non-geographic numbers (up to 8p/min from BT landline)
  • 0871, 0872 non-geographic numbers (up to 10p/min from BT landline)
  • 09 premium rate numbers