Press release

Garage Proprietor handed 7 year ban for deficient records

Sarah Louise Howard, 44, a director of Markham Commercials (Retford) Limited that traded as a garage proprietor has been banned from being a director of a company for a period of seven years for from 30 May 2014 for failing to ensure that the company kept proper books and records or paid its tax liabilities.


Commenting on the disqualification, Robert Clarke, Group Leader of Insolvent Investigations North at the Insolvency Service, said:-

“Directors of limited companies have a clear, statutory obligation to make sure that they maintain full and accurate records. Without these it is impossible to verify what has happened to company funds, account for its assets or establish whether directors have acted properly.

“Directors cannot cloak their actions through a lack of records, or seek to gain an unfair competitive advantage through non-payment of taxes, and the Insolvency Service will take robust action against those who fail to maintain the standards required.”

Following an investigation by the Insolvency Service, Ms Howard gave an undertaking to the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills not to act as a director, manage, or in any way control a company until 30 May 2021.

The investigation found that, despite requests by the liquidator, Ms Markham failed to hand over adequate accounting records and as a result it wasn’t possible to establish what had happened to motor vehicles previously owned by the company with an estimated value of £80,700. The lack of records also hampered the liquidator’s attempts to establish the position on her director’s loan account.

As well as not keeping or delivering up company records Ms Howard failed to ensure that Markham complied with its statutory obligation to submit returns and payments to HM Revenue & Customs, leaving them with a debt of £127,851 when the company failed.

Notes to Editors

Ms Howard is of Weston, Newark and her date of birth is 19 February 1970.

Markham Commercials (Retford) Limited went into creditors voluntary liquidation on 21 May 2012 with a deficiency to creditors of £237,122. This company traded as a Garage proprietor from premises at Markham House, Retford Road, Markham Moor, Retford, D22 0QU between April 2009 and 21 May 2012, the date of the appointment of the Liquidator.

The Insolvency Service administers the insolvency regime investigating all compulsory liquidations and individual insolvencies (bankruptcies) through the Official Receiver to establish why they became insolvent. The agency also authorises and regulates the insolvency profession; deals with disqualification of directors in corporate failures; assesses and pays statutory entitlement to redundancy payments when an employer cannot or will not pay employees; provides banking and investment services for bankruptcy and liquidation estate funds; and advises ministers and other government departments on insolvency law and practice. Further information about the work of the Insolvency Service is available from

A disqualification order has the effect that without specific permission of a court, a person with a disqualification cannot; * act as a director of a company; * take part, directly or indirectly, in the promotion, formation or management of a company or limited liability partnership; * act as an insolvency practitioner; or * be a receiver of a company’s property. Disqualification undertakings are the administrative equivalent of a disqualification order but do not involve court proceedings.

Further information on director disqualifications and restrictions can be found at

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Published 26 June 2014