MASS Executive Director, Jane Loney, joined the MASS Office way back in 1997 – so it’s high time we tell you a bit more about her!
I was in temporary work and saw the advert in the Bristol Evening Post. Following a 2 hour interview, well more of a chat, with Bernie Rowe – the rest is history!
Why the law?
My qualification and previous life was in agriculture, but as we didn’t have a farm, I was going nowhere fast. After travelling for a couple of years and trying a few other jobs/avenues, I didn’t really know what I wanted to do, but I enjoyed the small bit of law that we did at College. When moving to Bristol, in order to meet people, for my sins (and I’ve still no idea why!) I did A level law at evening class in a year. We had a brilliant lecturer and great class and I really enjoyed it. Then I saw the advert for MASS and I sat my A level exams when I started at MASS in May 1997. I knew nothing about RTA claims then and not sure how much I know now – I passed the A level though!
Best win in Court/most important win to date
As a victim, when I was 19 I had my first car accident, which was damage only, but really shook me. My Dad helped me through the small claims court which was quite an experience back then, but we won. Still don’t think I would like to do it myself now.
Thoughts on the implications of the Civil Liability Act
Not being a lawyer, I look at the CLA and Small Claims Limit rise from a consumers’ point of view and in my opinion, it is going to be unjust, unfair and a disaster in terms of Access to Justice.
Having worked at MASS for over 20 years, I have some understanding of an RTA claim, yet I would not like to run my own claim. Equally I have had personal experience of insurers’ tactics and the thought of the consumer (with no knowledge at all) not having access to independent legal advice is scary. No matter what the Government say (and of course they know best), handling any claim is not straightforward.
Insurers’ will benefit and victims will be left still paying high motor premiums and be out of pocket or worst still, coping with an injury, from an accident that wasn’t their fault.
What 3 items would you take to a desert island?
Music device of some description, book(s) and a phone so I can speak to my family. If I can’t have the latter, then a large supply of G&T!
What’s your claim to fame?
Don’t think I have one – although I was on local radio when I was about nine!
What’s the best and worst piece of advice you have ever received?
My Dad was fantastic when it came to money and he told us to “only buy what you can afford” – which was the best advice, especially when I was younger and didn’t have much money but wanted all those nice things!
Worst advice – when I was a young teenager I set my heart on a career in the police force and being in the horse section. We had a policeman come to school and give a talk – I asked him about getting into the horse section and his response was “don’t bother as virtually no women get in” – from that day I didn’t give it another thought. How times have changed and for the better!
What would be your first question after waking up from being cryogenically frozen for 100 years?
Is anyone there?
Don’t put new shoes on a table – it is bad luck!
Best ever holiday or place you have visited?
New Zealand – I have been lucky enough to visit twice – once whilst travelling and once for a holiday. It is the most amazing country, really beautiful and diverse, fantastic if you love the outdoors and the added bonus of not many people!
Mini Clubman – I loved this car and it’s amazing what you can fit in them! I had it for 4 years and for 3 of those I was at College in Shropshire and it survived the numerous long trips on the M5 and beyond.
Huge and varied range including The Eagles, Dire Straits, Coldplay and Kodaline. Although I am trying to keep up with the times and love Spotify for searching out new artists!
I love reading and always have a book on the go. I’ve read some great books but the only one I have read twice and would highly recommend is Wild Swans by Jung Chang. Whilst China is perhaps not flavour of the year, this true story tells the life of three generations up until the late 70’s. Quite remarkable what the human being can endure and very humbling.
Best TV boxset or movie?
I don’t watch a huge amount of TV or films – but when I do – nature programmes especially with David Attenborough and a good drama. Films range from The King’s Speech, Bucket List to sci fi comedy Paul.
Has to be a Gin and Tonic, but a close second is a nice glass of white wine. If I’m not allowed alcohol then a nice cup of tea.
This is very difficult for me as I’m a real ‘foodie’ and there is very little that I don’t like. So most seafood, meat dishes and vegetables!
What is the first thing you like to do with your free time?
Be outdoors! Weather permitting on our boat sailing, watching or playing sport, walking/cycling or just pottering in the garden.
What annoys you?
Rude people and when I can’t find what I need, which seems to be happening more and more now I’m getting older!
Thoughts on Brexit?
Following the vote, I was optimist that the UK had the wherewithal to succeed without the EU. But during the disastrous years since, not to mention a world pandemic, my optimism has waivered. The world is going to be a very difficult place for the coming years, but hopefully the good old British spirit and talent will see us through.
This article first appeared in MASS Insight Magazine Summer 2020