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This Blog is dedicated to making public some of the business activities and methods of Liam Collins, David Bone Jr and their associates. In the spring of 2010, the present authors invested in Collins & Bone (C&B), who were offering an enticing 8-10% interest on the basis of buying houses for cash, renovating them and letting them out to students. We were assured that our money was secured against houses that they owned, including their own homes and the properties held by their associated company, Castle & Gatehouse (C&G). We have emails and brochures that confirm these details, as do others who invested on this same basis at around the same time. The idea worked for us for over a year, then in November 2011 they told us they were insolvent. They refused our every request for clear accounts, which led us to suspect wrongdoing. We began an investigation and then started this Blog. We found our suspicions confirmed: other investors had lost sometimes quite large amounts to C&B and its predecessor CBS, and all requests for repayment were adamantly refused. These people use and have used so many names that we found it necessary to compress them into CoBo (for Collins & Bone) and Coboco (for the whole bunch of them – there are quite a few!) Note that there is an index in the margin at the right hand side.

Tuesday, 5 June 2012


Here's a recent post on Facebook in the page on Getting Our Diggs Deposits Back:

The house on which Gem and her friends put a deposit is 41 Albert Street, Preston. Interestingly, in the CoBo property schedule issued to investors it is listed as belonging to Liam Collins and Iqbal Singh, not David Bone Jr. It seems that these names get shuffled about to suit whatever the Coboco group have in mind at the time. They have been doing this, and getting away with it for a number of years. Now at last they are coming under the spotlight.

The directors of Novocastria Lettings are listed as Mark Black and David Bone Senior. Rachael Bone managed the office. We want to know why Novocastria Lettings took a deposit in February 2012 for September of this year when they all knew that Liam Collins and David Bone Jr would almost certainly be bankrupt well before that month. The deposits were paid  into Novocastria Lettings bank account. We want to know what happened to that money.

In the Castle & Gatehouse brochure, it says of Mark Black "He holds a Law Degree, MBA and studied Real Estate at Harvard Business School.*" In view of which, he must surely know that according to the Law of this Land, tenants' deposits must be held in [1] a special government-registered account or [2] in an insured account, so that tenants' money is not at risk in the event of business failure.

There are serious irregularities here and it has been noted by many people that each named person of the group that we call Coboco characteristically evades responsibility towards those people whose money they have taken, whether they are investors or students.  


* Would that be the one in Penzance, perchance?


  1. I stumbled across Novocastria on a property search engine yesterday whist desperately trying to get out of my 'Diggs/Bone/Collins/Novocastria' house I currently rent: Still alive and kicking. Having had no contact with any of the CoBo clan for many months (I try but they never return my calls...sob..!) I rang up and had the pleasure of Mr Black, which was nice, as I have missed being repeatedly lied too.

    1. Dear Anonymous,

      If you would send us your email address at, together with details of the house you are renting, we'll be in touch and we may have some suggestions to offer.


      IFS TEAM

  2. I have retrieved a letter today stating that the house I am renting is now in the control of the appointed trustee and that If i can provide a copy of my contract my tenancy will be honoured.
    This is the best news I have had all year and will be throwing a Bankruptcy party in the name of CoBo (with bunting and cake). However, CoBo being CoBo, I never received an actual contract but will be intouch with the trustee on monday to explain this issue. Im not overly worried as Im sure I wont be the only tenant with this problem and am due to leave the property at the end of this month anyway.
    However, my heart does go out to the new student tenants whom are due to move in. I know one student has paid a full years rent as a lump sum in March, and judging by 'Gem' from facebook's contract issues as well as my own, CoBo's allergy to the production of tenancy agreements may be effecting students for some time to come.
    I would also like to add that my housemate received a call from one of the numerous Bone clan this week, asking for the rent payment, somewhat cheeky considering the receivership letter specifically dictates all rent payments to be made to the trustee only. Not content with stealing from investors and students, it seems that they are going for a full house.
    Many thanks to the IFS team for the CoBo education, its reassuring to know that the support is there, and the blog is proving to be my favourite read. I will be more than happy to provide any trustee details and contact numbers if required.

    1. Like the person above I have received notice regarding the property I have been renting for 5 1/2 years but unlike him I will not be celebrating the fact that I'll be losing my home for the past 5 1/2 years & I will be out of pocket by over £1200 by the time I take into consideration the deposit money lost & the cost of moving.

  3. Dear Anonymous, If you would send us your email address to, together with details of the house you are renting, we'll be in touch and we may have some suggestions to offer. Best, IFS TEAM

  4. We are living in a property in Carlisle under Novocastria, right now Mark Black and his cronies are in the house trying to prepare it for some viewings for next year. They have been demanding deposits out of people on the spot, we have no fire extinguishers, gas or electric certificates and the plumbing in two of the bathrooms is connected so excrement comes up in someones sink when the toilet is flushed. I hate Mark Black.

    1. Dear Anonymous, please see the comment above your own. If you contact us, we'll see what can be done.