Mr Danieli is obviously very articulate.

There is no reason why he should not pursue his claims himself through the county court. The court officers are happy to help litigants in person and many domestic clients will not in fact have the will or energy to defend, so that it would be possible to obtain judgment in default. I have an architect friend who pursues debts owed to him by domestic clients himself and I give him a little bit of legal advice in the background if it becomes sticky, but on the whole he achieves fairly satisfactory results.

Incidentally, many firms at which the partners charge considerably more than £190 an hour have debt collection specialists whose rates are very much lower than that. I hope this is helpful.

Joanna Kennedy, head of dispute resolution, Collyer-Bristow