£15 billion is lying unclaimed in Britain’s bank vaults and in Missing Millions MELANIE SYKES and PAUL HEINEY reunite people with their forgotten fortunes. From pensions and life insurance, to shares, dividends and money put aside for a rainy day, this new four part series made by Flame TV for ITV1, tracks down people who didn’t even know they were entitled to a windfall.
PAUL and MELANIE, along with genealogist NICK BARRATT and the Missing Millions team, find the unwitting recipients and bring them the good news. They also look at the history of the benefactors and the stories surrounding their unclaimed cash.
“It’s an astonishing amount of money and I was staggered to learn just how much the public could be entitled to,” says PAUL. “It’s been fascinating delving into the past to discover where the money came from and why it is lying unclaimed.” MELANIE adds: “People are sitting on small fortunes without even realising it. It was our job to track them down so they could claim the money which is rightfully theirs. I felt like Mother Christmas delivering the good news.”
In programme one MELANIE travels to Morecambe to track down the recipient of a £13,000 savings plan which has been sitting unclaimed for 20 years. It was set up by Irene L Schofield but records show that there were two women of the same name, with the same middle initial, living in the same town and both born in 1930. MELANIE and NICK discover that the person who set up the policy is Irene Lucy Schofield and she has passed away. MELANIE visits Irene’s daughter Janet to tell her that she will inherit the forgotten cash along with her brother Andrew. Janet had to give up her job as a nurse after a severe brain seizure left her partially disabled.
MELANIE also surprises single mum Amy with the news that her grandfather Patrick Belton set up a savings policy when she was born which she knew nothing about. Patrick died in 2005 from stomach cancer and the policy was never passed on to Amy. Just over a year later tragedy struck again when Amy also lost her father to cancer. Amy, from Glasgow, is shocked to discover that she will get £6113.
PAUL delves back in time to find out why Shirley grandparents John and Rose King set up a life assurance ‘penny policy’ in 1947. With no NHS or welfare state penny policies were set up in the early 1900s to encourage people to save one or two pence each week.
John was a lineman in the Royal Signal Corp. He was sent to France landing six days after D-Day right into the pivotal battle of Caen. Shirley learns about John’s time during the war and discovers the wartime dangers Rose faced right on her own doorstep in Watford which led the couple to take out the policy. PAUL delivers one final bombshell to Shirley - she will inherit £9,000.
New four part series starts on Tuesday September 13 at 8pm on ITV1
For press information please contact Lucy Hynes for Flame Television firstname.lastname@example.org
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Flame TV is one of the UK’s leading independent producers, making factual and daytime programmes. Established in November 1999 by Roger Bolton and Barbara Altounyan, its aim was to create popular formats in challenging and new subject areas. Flame’s diverse output includes political current affairs shows and factual entertainment formats including; Alesha Dixon: Who’s Your Daddy?, Don’t Hit My Mum, Heir Hunters, Saints and Scroungers, Talk to the Prime Minister, Don’t Get Done Get Dom, and Churchill’s Girl.
The series producer is SIMON BISSET and the executive producers are BARBARA ALTOUNYAN and ROGER BOLTON for Flame TV.