Financial liabilities of vet under examination

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1914 court

At the Scarborough Bankruptcy Court, before the Registrar, Mr F Bedwell, John Hill, veterinary surgeon, residing at the George Hotel, came up for examination. The liabilities were returned at £191 5s 6d, and assets £24 8s, having a deficiency of £166 17s 6d.

Debtor, in reply to the Assistant Official Receiver, said that he was admitted as a veterinary surgeon at Glasgow in 1907, and began business at Scarborough in 1910. Prior to that he had been an assistant at Helston, Cornwall. He came to Scarborough because he had been here before, and he saw an advertisement which said there was a good opening, so he came. He had a capital of £112, £87 which he had saved and £25 he borrowed from a friend. He paid £52 10s for one practice and about £11 to the other. He took the business by repute, and when he saw the books he found that the practice was not what he had understood it was. Debtor worked it up, and obtained other appointments.

He held a local appointment at a salary of £120 a year. He held an appointment under the Board of Agriculture for about six months last year. For this he had a retaining fee of 12 guineas, and the remainder was made up of professional expense – a guinea a day and expenses. He was an Inspector in regard to infectious disease amongst animals under the Board. He received one cheque for £30 odd and another for £25 odd. At the end of six months he lost that appointment. He had made last year a gross income of £377, and a net income of £290. He became aware of his insolvency soon after he commenced in 1910, when he found out his position in regard to the practice. By the end of 1910 he was pressed for money, and since then he had been in the hands of moneylenders, borrowing from one and paying another. He had paid about 50 per cent.

Asked what expectation he had of paying that, he replied that with the practice improving he might do it. He had a dog he might have sold for £25 or £30, but it was killed by a car. He had borrowed £33 13s 3d from a lady. In December 1912 there was a distraint for rent. There was a petition presented in that court against him in February 1913, and he settled it in June 1913. He arranged through his solicitor to effect a composition of 10s in the £1 on that debt (£95). The sum of £45 was paid and £35 costs, £80 in all. He arranged to pay £10 a month out of his earnings in regard to that. This had been paid with other amounts, totalling about £150 with the exception of about £18, which he urged was fully secured. When the firm referred to was paid out debtor was owing £373, and the result of the payment was that the others pressed him. At the date of the Receiving Order 13 creditors were suing, and there were five committal orders. The last position was therefore worst than the first. He did not file before because he thought it might jeopardise appointments he held. His wife had become liable in regard to one promissory note. His wife was away in a musical comedy company at present earning her own living. He proposed, if he was allowed to retain his public appointment, to pay £6 a month to the benefit of his creditors until they received 10s in the £1. He considered he made £200 a year in addition to that appointment, but he had to pay for drugs and so on. They would amount to about £1 a week.

The examination was closed.