By Marita Bott

'Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse. ' Well all that is except Walter, our 12 month old Irish, who decided to take it upon himself to feast upon some £60 worth of bank notes consuming a large part of three £20 notes AND it was whilst we were in the room with him too. Despite a panic search we couldn't find any of the missing pieces to stick the notes back together again. We spent the next two days tracking behind Walter in the field with a shovel (and a torch at night, picture the scene!!!) hoping to retrieve the missing bits and complete the notes (after washing of course) but nothing appeared.

Never having had this happen before I was not really sure what to do next. So Just in case this happens to you this is what you have to do to get your notes renewed. After a search on the internet I found the Bank of England's own website www.bankofengland.co.uk which has a section on Banknotes and a further one dealing with Damaged Banknotes where you can download a form to send back damage notes and (hopefully as I have only just sent them off) they will refund you with a cheque.

You do need the serial numbers though and we luckily still had one on each of the remnants.

Amusingly there is a box to fill in which asked 'What happened to the notes' so I added: ' Eaten by a dog' and another box asking 'What happened to the missing portions?' so I put: ' have been digested - we have been checking!!'

Finally Please can you help? I need input from some of you to keep these notes varied and country wide - I do not want to write all these notes myself. I am still hoping that I can find some breed note reporters from different areas of the UK so I can include all the news you have of your local events. Please get in touch if you can contribute in any way.

Wishing you and your dogs a Happy and Successful 2009.

Marita Bott

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