Bill Fairclough (born John William Percy Fairclough on August 31, 1950) is the non-executive chairman of The Burlington Files Group and was the nominal author of The Burlington Files, the series of spy novels based on his life. In 1978 he founded Faire Sans Dire, a niche global intelligence and investigatory organisation.
Bill Fairclough started his career as a trainee accountant (or articled clerk) at Cooper Brothers (later to become Coopers & Lybrand and after that PricewaterhouseCoopers) and somewhat altruistically lived a double life from the early seventies. After qualifying as a Chartered Accountant at Coopers, he established and controlled Faire Sans Dire in the late seventies to provide a conduit whereby intelligence agencies involved mainly in law enforcement at that time could more easily work together. The goal was to help prevent the exponential spread of international organized crime.
After leaving Coopers & Lybrand in July 1983 Bill Fairclough continued to work in the international financial services industry until January 1999 while still retaining control of Faire Sans Dire. From 1983 to 1986 he worked at Citigroup and from 1986 to 1999 he worked at the Barclays Group (including a short secondment to the Reuters Group). From 1999 he "switched roles" and Faire Sans Dire became his main occupation, albeit covertly until 2010, while simultaneously taking on directorships (overtly and covertly) in various companies mainly in the financial services sector but also in property, healthcare and other industries.
In July 2009 Bill Fairclough was approached for the third time to try to make some films loosely based on his experiences. At the time he was still running Faire Sans Dire and acting as a director for various property and finance companies. Through intermediaries he contacted two well-known film production companies to assess their appetite for making films comprising a pot pourri of unusual concepts and experiences based on his somewhat unconventional and maverick dual existence.
Despite all their initial enthusiasm, the negotiations with those companies’ executives came to nothing. Both film production companies advised Bill that he must first present his material in book and/or film script format. Sadly, his approach to one US corporation eventually landed on stony ground when MGM, which produced many of the James Bond films, filed for bankruptcy. (MGM has since recovered.) The other household name film production company approached was based in the UK but had a full production agenda for many years ahead.
Accordingly, on 5 March 2014 the first novel in The Burlington Files series, Beyond Enkription, was published on Amazon (worldwide) as a paperback and eBook (written for film adaptation) and copyrighted by an English company, The Burlington Files Limited of which Bill was ostensibly the majority shareholder at the time. The official date of publication marked the fiftieth anniversary of the opening chapter in Beyond Enkription and was “coincidentally” on purpose the same day as Bill’s father’s birthday. In 2015 a hardcover version of Beyond Enkription was published by Dolman Scott.
Beyond Enkription was not written as and has never been marketed as a traditional novel because it was "written for film adaptation". The sole purposes of publication were to secure copyright and make it easy for those in the film industry to access it in a manner that suited them once they had been contacted via Faire Sans Dire. Accordingly, irrespective of its qualities or lack of them, the book has to date not been a best-seller other than in obtuse ways in China and old Soviet Bloc countries such as the Ukraine and Bulgaria. It is estimated that in aggregate over 60,000 copies were sold through illegitimate eBook libraries within a year or so of its publication on Kindle: so much for copyright!
Bill Fairclough had a brother and sister and was the youngest of three children; both his elder siblings, Jane and Peter, are now deceased. Peter attended Keble College at Oxford University studying history and despite his frequent absences obtained a third-class degree which was more than his younger brother Bill achieved at university. Given Bill only attended university for 17 days that is hardly surprising!
Bill Fairclough’s father, the son of an ex-headmaster of a school in Putney, was an Oxford Scholar from Keble College where he obtained a first and a doctorate in chemistry. Bill's parents met during the war when his father (ostensibly working for ICI) was working secretly on creating bombs to wipe out the Nazi's industrial hinterland. Bill's parents married in Yarm in 1941.
After Bill's father, Richard Fairclough, retired from ICI he ran an antiquarian and second-hand book shop in Yarm during the late seventies and the eighties until his death in 1987. The book shop, which mainly exported antiquarian books to overseas libraries, was used in the eighties as a front for various intelligence and recruitment purposes by both his youngest son and some countries’ intelligence agencies.
When not gated (or being otherwise punished for unruly behaviour) at boarding school, Bill Fairclough spent most of his childhood and early teens in the North East of England not far from the banks of the River Tees. As a child he lived in Billingham and then (in a vast white house once lived in by the poet Percy Shelley) in Norton by the “green” overlooking the duck pond. In his early teens he lived in Middleton St George and later in Yarm and rented flats near nightclubs he worked in or controlled during the late sixties near Stockton-on-Tees and Jesmond in Newcastle-upon-Tyne.
In his youth Bill Fairclough survived numerous life-threatening events such as serious accidents, severe illnesses and multiple car and boat crashes. On three successive holidays as a teenager his escapades included sinking a 35-foot pleasure cruiser near where the Grand Union Canal and the River Trent meet; escaping from a flat burnt to ashes in Ealing; and being diagnosed with acute appendicitis while touring the mountainous regions surrounding Innsbruck. He also survived several attempted murders in his late teens and early twenties while involved in running night clubs and casinos. He lived life in the fast lane.
In 1971 he left the North East of England in a hurry, bound for Soho, London's West End and a new job at Coopers in the City of London at their prestigious Head Office in Gutter Lane Cheapside. (Coopers tried to change their address, but the City of London suggested they change their name to "Gutter Brothers" as Gutter Lane Cheapside had been there for centuries). To his employers at Coopers it was understandable that anyone like Bill would prefer to work in their large Head Office rather than their relatively small offices in Middlesbrough and Newcastle-upon-Tyne.
Fairclough already had a reputation for spotting and uncovering fraud and malpractice in major clients (e.g. nationalised industries and local authorities) which had not escaped the notice of some of Coopers' senior partners in London. However, according to Bill he had been moonlighting in night clubs and had to leave for his own safety after getting involved in gang warfare. He was receiving unwanted attention from protection racketeers (including allegedly corrupt police based mainly in Newcastle and Sunderland) all along the North East coast of England from Scarborough to Whitley Bay.
On arrival in the West End of London in 1971 he maintained a triple existence not only working for Coopers but also moonlighting in clubs and the music industry while unwittingly assisting the intelligence services (please see his covert professional life below). In the music industry he acted as an accountant for several promoters, agents, managers and artists while dabbling in the fun side of the business including co-managing some rock groups in Europe such as Ange and Little Bob Story. In the early seventies, the highlights of his involvement in the music industry included:
(4) dressed in a pin stripe suit to provoke the audience, pretending to whip Stacia Blake (of the band Hawkwind) on stage at some of Hawkwind's concerts for which he was purportedly made an "honorary" Hells Angel; and
(5) hiring Wembley Stadium after reaching an oral agreement with Colonel Tom Parker for a weekend performance by Elvis Presley which never happened as Elvis decided he didn't want to perform overseas at the time!
He turned down various offers in the early seventies to manage some very well-known UK and American rock bands as he found working with the intelligence services more intellectually challenging and exciting as a moonlighting "pastime". He even turned down a request in the eighties to become the non-executive chairman of the London Philharmonic Orchestra claiming that he couldn't even spell Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky but then how many in the orchestra could?
From the mid-seventies until the mid-nineties Bill Fairclough spent much time working overseas. He was based in Nassau Bahamas and the Americas on and off up until the mid-eighties. Bill continued to face many near-death experiences on land, water and in the air. He suffered from a toxic variety of life threatening illnesses including a few attempted poisonings. He also survived several other attempts on his life by those who would have preferred that his investigatory talents weren’t covertly locked onto their criminal empires.
Bill Fairclough was married in 1983 and by 1987 his wife had two children. After a separation lasting six years their marriage ended in divorce in 1995. He remarried in August 1996.
In February 1996 his brother was controversially reported to have allegedly committed suicide prior to a planned move down South from Yarm.
Schools & Universities
Bill Fairclough attended Red House School in Norton Stockton-on-Tees and then obtained a full fee-paying scholarship to St Peter's School York. He was nearly expelled from Red House School on more than one occasion for his rebellious behaviour. However, once safely ensconced as a scholar at St Peter's School York he was safe from expulsion as the expulsion of any scholar was unprecedented and would have reflected badly on those who awarded it.
St Peter's School York is one of the oldest schools in the world having been founded in 627AD by Saint Paulinus. Bill was far removed from being a saint! Mind you, John Johnson ("JJ"), better known as Guy Fawkes, one of its former pupils wasn't a saint either. As noted in The Burlington Files website, JJ was the first pseudonym attributed to Bill whilst being used as an intelligence asset in London: the UK intelligence agencies knew a little about history.
In his last term at York, Bill Fairclough took the Oxford scholarship entry exam with a view to following in his father's scholarly footsteps at Keble College. Bill was assured through his father (by a close friend and fellow scholar at Keble, one Douglas Price) that he had done exceedingly well in the exam and was unquestionably on course to obtain a scholarship in English literature at Keble College having apparently excelled all the others taking the scholarship exams. (Douglas Price devoted most of his life to Keble College which has a prestigious society named after him.)
Accordingly, Bill attended an interview at Oxford University somewhat unusually with Douglas Price in attendance. They had met before at Bill's father's houses over the years. However, he was not only refused a scholarship but also refused entry to Keble College. Even his brother Peter's position had become precarious, but Peter managed to remain at Keble on the proviso that he relinquished his rooms there which he did.
Bill had been turned down for egregious misbehaviour after a party that had lasted long into the night which was attended by him and his brother. Bill’s night out ended unceremoniously only a few hours before the interview. Consequently, he was immediately suspended from school. He left for Soho rather than return North and later went to the University of East Anglia instead of Oxford University as planned.
From September 1967 until July 1968 Bill spent only seventeen days at East Anglia University in Norwich preferring the “University of Life” in Central London and Newcastle-upon-Tyne working in casinos and clubs and jointly running night clubs and discotheques. Even so, he passed his first-year exams at Norwich with flying colours (obtaining the equivalent of a first) and then left prematurely without notice.
Bill Fairclough also attended Newcastle Polytechnic to study accountancy after being articled to a partner (Trevor Middleton) at Cooper Brothers in Newcastle-upon-Tyne. He obtained top marks in many of the exams including several "100%" marks on his papers. He qualified first time as a Chartered Accountant in the early seventies and in 1980 he became a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales. In 1994 he became a member of the Chartered Institute for Securities & Investment. In 1995 he became a life member of the Association of Corporate Treasurers. In January 2016, after over 40 years as a qualified Chartered Accountant, Bill resigned from the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales.
From the late eighties at various times Bill Fairclough was registered with the UK and other financial and banking regulatory bodies to be a director of businesses operating in the financial services sector. Since then many of them have changed their names. In the UK those authorities included the SFA, IMRO, the PIA, the FSA (via the ICAEW) and the Bank of England which now comes under the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulatory Authority. In the USA he was similarly licensed by the Securities and Exchange Commission; in Japan by the Ministry of Finance; and in Hong Kong by their Securities and Futures Commission.
Overt Professional Life
Bill Fairclough worked at Coopers & Lybrand (or Cooper Brothers) from 1969 to 1983. During his fourteen years with Coopers, apart from helping establish Coopers & Lybrand itself and working in their Technical Department, Bill’s bread and butter work included working on: audits, investigations and restructurings of British Steel, British Telecom and British Leyland; audits and investigations of listed companies (e.g. Rio Tinto Zinc), local councils, banks and leasing companies; liquidations, audits and investigations of banks and other financial organizations in the Caribbean; reviewing audit work undertaken by the UK firm; and many unusual one offs such as helping with the start-up and subsequent sale of a Peruvian investment house.
While working in Coopers' Technical Department he wrote (with others) the firm’s Manual of Auditing, several UK statements of standard accounting practice (SSAPs) and other publications (e.g. on the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and related anti-boycott legislation). Later, he became the first Secretary to Coopers' International Executive Committee reporting to the International Firm’s CEO, the first of whom was Sir Brandon Gough.
At Coopers & Lybrand (now PricewaterhouseCoopers) as Secretary to the International Executive Committee Bill Fairclough was also involved in helping investigate major frauds encountered by the firm internationally and investigating suspected malpractices involving Coopers' international partners (e.g. straightforward fraud or compliance with coercion by terrorists). From the mid-seventies he was based in either the UK or the Bahamas and worked extensively in Europe, the USA, Canada, the Caribbean and Central America.
In 1983 Bill Fairclough was head-hunted by Citigroup based in the Strand London and became the deputy chief financial officer for Citigroup's EMEA and Far East operations which at the time held more assets than the UK's Lloyds Bank Group and Midland Bank Group global banking operations combined. It is notable that prior to head-hunting Bill Fairclough, the head-hunter concerned had become a client of the Fairclough family's book shop. Once Bill had joined Citigroup, despite his and his father's best efforts, neither of them could trace the head-hunter, and on reviewing all of Citigroup's relevant records in the UK and the USA, no fee appeared to have been charged for the head-hunter's services!
Bill earned his daily bread by not only undertaking those chores one would expect of an accountant and deputy finance director. In addition, using the talents he had acquired at Coopers, Bill spent much time: investigating alleged frauds and malpractices; creating off balance sheet schemes (some of which involved mixed interest rate and currency swaps with multiple termination dates for up to thirty counter-parties at a time); and creating ground breaking off-balance sheet vehicles (such as Drury Lane Limited and Citibank Investments Limited).
Also, working in a team of three, reporting to Kent Price (Citicorp's UK chief executive officer at the time) Bill assessed potential acquisitions such as Williams & Glyn's Bank, The Royal Bank of Scotland Group and Nationwide Building Society none of which were deemed palatable by the Bank of England. Bill also helped sell Citigroup's Thai banking interests in such a way that the deals were not perceived to be trading in banking licenses which was, of course, forbidden under the prevailing regulations in Hong Kong and Thailand.
Fairclough's investigations into alleged frauds and malpractices extended into more covert investigations of suspected customer-oriented tax frauds emanating out of the Bahamas, alleged breaches of the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and related anti-boycott legislation in the Middle East. Some of these investigations were mandated by Citigroup's chief financial officer in 1985 (Tom Jones, a UK citizen) based in Wall Street. He had confidentially instructed Bill Fairclough to covertly investigate certain suspected politically sensitive frauds and other misdemeanours in most of the areas Citigroup operated in excluding North America.
Citigroup now calls itself "Citi" and remains one of the largest banks in the world. Bill parted company with Citigroup pursuant to conducting the covert investigations he was instructed to undertake and more besides. Those investigations had global consequences for Citigroup. It ended up paying out unprecedented fines (including penalties to large numbers of tax authorities) and its global management structure was completely overhauled at the behest of regulators.
In 1986 Bill Fairclough joined the Barclays Bank Group. He worked his way up the ladder at Barclays becoming a director of many Mercantile Credit and Mercantile Group businesses, Ebbgate Holdings (BZW now Barclays Investment Bank), Barclays Stockbrokers, Barclays Financial Services, Barclays Holdings and many other Barclays Group companies including Barclays Bank Trust Company. In addition, he had responsibilities for other parts of the Barclays Group such as Barclays Global Investors. (Please note that most of Bill Fairclough's Barclays Group directorships are no longer visible on the UK Companies House website.)
In 1995 Bill re-joined Barclays after a quasi-secondment to Reuters when one part of BZW he was operations director for was sold to the Reuters Group and later to NASDAQ. At Reuters Bill had been a director of many companies including a founding director of Instinet Holdings some of whose subsidiaries had later been sold to NASDAQ too.
While at Barclays (including when Bill was seconded to Reuters) he was mainly based in London but also worked out of New York, Tokyo and Hong Kong. During this part of his career he worked in many countries in Europe, the Far East and the Americas.
Please note that although Bill Fairclough held many senior board positions at Barclays those were all held long before Barclays became embroiled in mis-selling, interest/exchange rate fixing and other scandals. Those parts of the Barclays Group which were later to become centres of duplicity and dishonesty many years after Bill left Barclays in 1999 never fell under his direct chain of command in his later years at Barclays.
However, during his time at Barclays Bill was involved in many investigations into alleged frauds and malpractices. During his thirteen years at Barclays many "con-artists" including several senior group executives and directors within the Barclays Group silently walked the plank for "breaches of their contracts" along with those foolish enough to have aided and abetted or turned a blind eye to their misdemeanours.
At Barclays, Bill’s daily chores varied as his seniority grew. For those parts of Barclays Group for which he was responsible he had typical finance director responsibilities which included having to deal with a smorgasbord of internal and external malpractices and frauds, attempted or otherwise, as well as producing often complex management and statutory accounts. He enhanced Barclays' profitability by introducing sub-LIBOR mismatched swap back to back funding to Mercantile. He even challenged the Inland Revenue's Board on grounds of “unfair competition” and won. As a result, Mercantile Group’s profitability increased notably.
In the eighties Bill helped expand Barclays' agricultural finance business (the Highland Group) such that through acquisition/de novo growth in Eire, Canada, Germany and Denmark it become the world’s second largest provider of agricultural finance behind the Deutz Allis Group. Along with Ed Robson, Highland’s CEO, Bill even tried to acquire Deutz Allis too! In addition, Bill helped develop joint ventures with Fiat, Citroen and Peugeot and created forestry and fast cheque processing businesses.
In 1990 he was part of a small Barclays team (reporting to Owen Rout) responsible for the restructuring of the Mercantile Group (which around that time broadly speaking represented 25% of the Barclays Group in terms of assets/profitability). In 1991 Bill sold Mercantile Credit to GE Capital days after Mercantile’s head office in Basingstoke had almost been burnt to the ground. Bill also assisted GE Capital start its UK business using what it had acquired from Mercantile Credit as its base.
In BZW Bill helped rapidly establish the Thamesway Group as the world’s premier soft commission broker (per Greenwich surveys). Thamesway's business expanded rapidly to include market moving anonymous multi-currency program trading across global bond and equity markets. Thamesway was cannibalizing BZW's core business to such a degree that in 1993 it was sold to Reuters (including Fairclough who re-joined Barclays in 1995). Bill helped Reuters develop the business across several countries, six of which were started from scratch, in less than 18 months after it acquired Thamesway.
On his return Fairclough was, inter alia, appointed a director of Barclays Holdings and a group senior executive. During over a decade in Barclays, Bill Fairclough worked with many of Barclays' luminaries including Oliver Stocken, Martin Taylor and John Varley as well as many other charming and "notable" characters including dozens of those whom he helped pursue their careers in pastures new.
In Bill Fairclough's latter years at Barclays in the late nineties he was on the board that built the first online retail broking business outside of the USA. He was involved in scouting for acquisitions but since they rarely worked out as planned he didn't recommend many although he did simultaneously sell the UK's largest personal tax business and bought the customer base of Fidelity Brokerage Services (within 24 hours of hearing it was for sale).
Since 2000 after leaving Barclays, Bill Fairclough ran his own regulated forensic accountancy practice. He was also a director of not only some reasonably well-known companies in the financial services sector but also several companies involved in activities other than the provision of financial services. In 2010 his involvement with Faire Sans Dire became public knowledge after he opened the organization’s first public website.
To date, after more than four decades, there has been only one series of covert investigations Faire Sans Dire was involved in where Bill Fairclough’s or Faire Sans Dire's name unintentionally entered the public domain. That was pursuant to lawsuits unexpectedly citing Fairclough for having carried out investigations that, inter alia, were purportedly incompatible with his fiduciary duties as a director. They were not.
The Money Portal
These investigations related to The Money Portal plc. Various legal actions took place relating to investigations conducted by Fairclough who was also The Money Portal’s finance director for almost a year.
The original case against Bill Fairclough and the strike out case brought by Bill Fairclough relating to The Money Portal plc were listed in the High Court of Justice, Queen's Bench Division under Case No. HQ05X00357. Another case relating to The Money Portal plc against Bill Fairclough was lodged in the Employment Tribunals as Case Number 3300888/2005. It is unlikely many people can access the High Court records given, inter alia, that the case never went to trial and was settled out of court.
The scandals relating to The Money Portal were spread over several years and related to one founding director in particular. In 2005 Bill Fairclough failed to get the case brought against himself summarily struck off by Mr Justice Forbes who was of fame for presiding over the Harold Shipman serial murders trial. The case was primarily sponsored by one of the company's founding directors who in 2006 was disqualified from acting as a director for ten years. Later he was bankrupted in and extradited from Australia and imprisoned until shortly before his trial in England in respect of criminal charges brought against him by the Serious Fraud Office.
Mr Justice Forbes argued that Bill Fairclough's strike-out case was so exceptional (e.g. it included a solicitor who confessed to destroying a company computer with a hammer and garden shears) that it should go to a full trial. Mr Justice Forbes said The Money Portal had only just “squeaked home” and thereby passed the baton on to the judge selected to preside over the full trial. It is of note that Mr Justice Forbes was not normally a judge in commercial cases. Furthermore, he had apparently made it known that he was close to retirement at the time with an unblemished record of never having had any of his judgements appealed. Presumably he was proud of this and no doubt wanted to retain his flawless reputation.
Not only the strike-out case but also the convoluted and complicated ensuing criminal trials and related civil proceedings involving people connected with The Money Portal plc were not exactly good advertisements for the quality of the British justice system or the Serious Fraud Office's investigatory capabilities.
Immediately after the strike out hearing in October 2005 The Money Portal tried to reach a settlement with Bill Fairclough because they did not wish the case to proceed to full trial for obvious reasons. It was not until July 2006 that Bill Fairclough and The Money Portal’s chairman (Richard Hambro of the Hambros Bank dynasty) reached an out of court settlement to Fairclough’s satisfaction.
By that time the founding director referred to earlier had admitted to some of his previous misdemeanours and accepted his disqualification from acting as a director for ten years. Since those misdemeanours were, inter alia, the subject of the original investigations led by Bill Fairclough it raises many legitimate questions about just why his strike out attempt failed.
Within days of the settlement, Bill Fairclough was rehired by The Money Portal to undertake additional confidential investigatory work for them. It was not long thereafter that, as aforesaid, one of their founding directors was bankrupted in and extradited from Australia and imprisoned in England in respect of criminal charges brought against him by the Serious Fraud Office.
As for Fairclough's failed attempt to strike out the case against him, some promotional material posted somewhat obtusely by the opposing legal team on 31 January 2007 was still floating around in cyberspace last time anyone looked. Given the benefit of hindsight, one might have thought they would have ceased crowing about their Pyrrhic and perplexing victory against “Fairclough & others”!
Covert Professional Life
To the extent considered legally acceptable and unlikely to harm any person Bill Fairclough's covert life is explained between the lines of The Burlington Files in which the lead character, one Edward Burlington, is based on Bill Fairclough. Edward Burlington's escapades in the series are based on Bill's life and his experiences to the extent they can be disclosed.
To date only the first autobiographical novel, Beyond Enkription, in The Burlington Files series of six novels has been published. It focuses on Bill Fairclough's life in 1974. Accordingly, the ensuing disclosures are mainly limited to assignments and investigations carried out in that year. Other assignments and investigations involving Bill Fairclough are also disclosed to a limited degree but only where they are already in the public domain.
In the seventies (and later) Bill Fairclough worked with Alan Pemberton CVO MBE  and Barrie Parkes MBE to covertly help combat corruption. Messrs Pemberton and Parkes combined their considerable skills and expertise to make the most of Bill Fairclough’s financial aptitudes to investigate some extraordinary international frauds and diplomatic financial misdemeanours. In 1978 Bill formed Faire Sans Dire which means to do without speaking. It was his family’s motto and incorporated in its crest of arms.
The organisation was established to provide a conduit such that intelligence agencies involved mainly in law enforcement could liaise with one another more easily to help tackle and reduce international organized crime. The rationale for that was during the (First) Cold War those on both "sides" wanted to put a stop to certain types of organised criminal activities but were prevented from liaising one with another for that purpose for political reasons.
Faire Sans Dire bridged the gap by providing anonymity to those who wished to halt heinous crimes such as people and drug trafficking across borders by those taking advantage of the uncooperative stances taken by the authorities who were at "cold war" with one another politically speaking.
Those who worked for or with Faire Sans Dire were not only from intelligence backgrounds but also included senior retired police officers, lawyers, accountants and retired members of elite military units such as the SAS, SBS and their equivalents from other countries' special forces. Since its establishment in 1978 Faire Sans Dire amassed a global network comprising many associates around the world whether individuals, firms, organisations or corporate and other bodies.
Furthermore, since 1978 Faire Sans Dire and Bill Fairclough have carried out and/or been consulted about many assignments and investigations for either Faire Sans Dire's clients in over 120 countries or for businesses which Bill Fairclough worked for as referred to above. Faire Sans Dire has operated under many guises but a company called Faire Sans Dire Limited has existed from time to time when required to act formally on behalf of the Faire Sans Dire organisation.
Much of Faire Sans Dire's work has been and still is carried out on a pro-bono basis. From its inception until recently Bill Fairclough has been the owner of Faire Sans Dire, the legal structure of which has changed from time to time. He normally used to act either as its executive or non-executive chairman.
Since 2018 Faire Sans Dire has closed its website which has been preserved for posterity because of the historical importance of Faire Sans Dire within The Burlington Files series. The intellectual property rights relating to FaireSansDire.org belong to The Burlington Files Limited. Faire Sans Dire remains a niche intelligence led security and investigatory organisation with global reach and provides a variety of risk management and intelligence gathering services with an increasing focus on cyberspace services. Faire Sans Dire has indeed gone back quietly into the night.
A Few Examples of Assignments
For more than four decades, Faire Sans Dire and Bill Fairclough spent much time ensuring their participation in investigations remained covert and anonymous hence citing detailed independent verifiable sources for most of their assignments is by and large impossible now. In addition, for legal and other reasons, much of their involvement in investigations and assignments cannot be divulged. Accordingly, only smatterings of carefully selected assignments are alluded to, sometimes nebulously, in The Burlington Files.
Since 2010 when Faire Sans Dire opened a public website, Bill Fairclough has publicly acknowledged his and/or Faire Sans Dire's involvement in a small number of specific investigations and assignments mainly by alluding to or referring to them in Beyond Enkription, the only published autobiographical novel in in The Burlington Files series. A few of those assignments and investigations (one way or another already in the public domain) are summarily and anecdotally disclosed below in a limited or redacted manner.
• The John Poulson scandal and subsequent resignation of Reginald Maudling: as referred and alluded to on pages 102, 103, 122, 135, 354 and 361 of Beyond Enkription. From the late sixties Bill Fairclough allegedly effected “legitimate” access to Poulson's offices in Middlesbrough which were situated on the floor above Cooper Brothers' offices where Bill was employed as an articled clerk, inter alia, on the audit of and investigations into what was Teesside Council. Coincidentally, when he was a young boy Bill Fairclough had met Reginald Maudling, then the Home Secretary, at a Conservative Party fund raising bash in Norton Stockton-on-Tees at which Harold Macmillan (the local Member of Parliament and friend of Bill's father) attended when Prime Minister.
• Thefts of bullion, other precious metals and diamonds worth millions of pounds from secure premises near Heathrow in the early seventies: as alluded to and described in Chapter 10 of Beyond Enkription. The thieves disabled the alarms that should have been triggered by movement across the paths of laser beams. The criminals inserted mirrors close to the sources of the laser beams. Once carefully slid into place close to the sources of the laser beams, the mirrors acted as receivers and rendered the alarm systems useless. Those responsible were never identified or caught but an inside job was suspected.
• Corruption et al involving Milton Obote and Idi Amin in Uganda: alluded to on pages 72, 143, 465 and 467 of Beyond Enkription. In the seventies Bill Fairclough investigated money laundering involving suitcases of cash sent from Rhodesia, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia to Europe which, inter alia, resulted in the assassination of a Ugandan diplomat involved with Faire Sans Dire. Bill Fairclough infiltrated the network responsible for these criminal activities.
• Human and body part trafficking and related international criminal activities (including murders and multi-million-dollar frauds) undertaken by African, Middle Eastern and Asian diplomats and intelligence agencies linked to organized crime in the seventies: as described in detail in Chapters 1 to 10, 13 to 20, 30 and 36 of Beyond Enkription. Bill Fairclough infiltrated the network responsible for these criminal activities while unwittingly working for British intelligence; he survived four known murder attempts while doing so.
• India's Operation Smiling Buddha and nuclear proliferation issues in 1974 involving, inter alia, South Africa's Bureau of State Security: as referred to and described in Chapters 11 to 13 of Beyond Enkription. Bill Fairclough became involved "by accident" while he was coincidentally working at one of Coopers & Lybrand's clients.
• Rogue Caribbean banks, such as the British American Bank Limited (in compulsory liquidation), in the seventies: many of these banks had been solely established and used to defraud depositors. This Bahamian bank named British American Bank Limited was renowned in the seventies for placing advertisements brazenly stating that it would pay 1% more interest on deposits than offered by any other bank in the same issue of Time Magazine.
• Drug trafficking, fraud and related crimes committed by Robert Vesco in the Caribbean in the seventies and eighties: as referred and alluded to in Chapters 22, 23 and 28 of Beyond Enkription. Also see Everipedia and/or Wikipedia links set out below which refer to Bill’s involvement and his abduction and attempted murder at the orders of Robert Vesco.
• Bribery, fraud and other crimes in Honduras committed by President Oswaldo Enrique López Arellano: as alluded to in Chapter 21 of Beyond Enkription. While operating in the Caribbean in the seventies and eighties, Bill Fairclough kept the Honduran President’s financial and other activities under surveillance.
• Millions of dollars' worth of black coral thefts in the Caribbean in the seventies: as referred and alluded to in Chapter 28 of Beyond Enkription. These investigations focused on allegations of thefts by former FBI and/or CIA operatives and pursuant thereto Bill Fairclough was nearly murdered on two known occasions, one as described in Beyond Enkription and another vengeful attempt a few years later by a senior "law enforcement" officer turned politician.
• Alleged breaches of international aviation financial and safety regulations by Haïti Air Inter in the seventies: as referred to and described in Chapters 28 and 31 to 35 of Beyond Enkription. Yet again, Bill Fairclough was nearly killed on more than one known occasion during the latter stages of these investigations which were linked to his other Haitian assignments.
• Crimes against humanity and corruption involving Jean-Claude (Baby Doc) Duvalier and the Tonton Macoute: as referred to and described in Chapters 28 and 31 to 35 of Beyond Enkription. Bill Fairclough survived two known attempted murders during these investigations.
• Money laundering and other crimes involving Luckner Cambronne, the "Vampire of the Caribbean": as referred to and described in Chapters 31 to 35 of Beyond Enkription. Luckner Cambronne's businesses supplied blood and cadavers mainly to the USA for medical uses. If there were insufficient available for shipment, his henchmen would murder anyone they could find on the streets of Port Au Prince at night to make sure they delivered what they had contracted to supply.
• Lynden Pindling and his criminal links to Carlos Lehder and other drug traffickers in the seventies (and beyond): as referred to and described in Chapters 21 and 22 of Beyond Enkription. As noted in other publications including The Burlington Files website, Fairclough has acknowledged involvement in investigations into attempted multi-million-dollar frauds against the Crown Agents in Nassau in the seventies and Pindling's “nation for sale” scandal in the seventies and eighties.
• Allegations concerning global corruption, fraud and tax evasion including alleged breaches of the US Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and related anti-boycott legislation in the Middle East involving Citigroup in the eighties: Bill Fairclough's and Faire Sans Dire's investigations took place mostly between 1983 and 1986 as referred to under the heading “Citigroup" in the section entitled "Overt Professional Life” above.
• Manuel Noriega, Oliver North and the Iran Contra scandal that nearly toppled US President Ronald Reagan in the eighties: as alluded to in the Panama Papers section of Faire Sans Dire's website and its press releases about the Panama Papers and Bill Fairclough’s related articles on LinkedIn. Apart from in 1974 as revealed in Beyond Enkription when Bill survived several known attempts on his life, 1984 and 1985 proved to be by far the most dangerous years in Bill Fairclough's life courtesy of his involvement in these matters.
• Alleged suspected terrorism and arson at Barclays' Mercantile Credit Head Office in Basingstoke in 1991: as referred to under the heading "Barclays Group" in the section entitled “Overt Professional Life” above. The only comments about this event that can be made are that at the time Bill Fairclough was conducting various investigations. It is therefore of note that from his perspective the fire somewhat inconveniently destroyed both the floors occupied by Mercantile Group's accounting staff. Many other floors in the building (Churchill Plaza) were gutted or severely damaged too.
• Allegations of fraud and other crimes from the nineties relating to Airship Industries (at times controlled by Alan Bond) and its successor companies: these allegations were more serious because of the companies' links to the US Department of Defence, British Military Intelligence and the UK defence industry including one successor company being chaired by Air Marshall Sir John Walker, an ex-chairman of the UK's Joint Intelligence Committee. Many hundreds of people, who were persuaded to invest thousands or millions of dollars, lost all their investments over several decades as company after phoenix company went bust. Some people were persuaded to invest by an illegal Spanish boiler room in 2000/2001 as reported in Citiwire in 2005. Others may have just taken a punt having possibly relied on the notable and purportedly reassuring names on one successor company's board prior to its collapse. At least Air Marshall Sir John Walker still had enough common sense to resign his position as chairman of the Advanced Technologies Group before, along with other creditors, calling in administrators to investigate alleged wrongdoings.
• The 2003 invasion of Iraq: with a view to helping the USA and its allies and significantly reducing casualties (on both sides), using Faire Sans Dire's resources, on his own initiative Fairclough contacted the Iraqi Intelligence Service (at the highest levels within the Iraqi playing cards) with a message they could not ignore in case Saddam Hussain had planted it as disinformation to test their loyalty. The message was a classic Morton's Fork which had to be reported to Saddam Hussain: it set out details of who to contact to receive huge bribes in consideration for the surrender of Iraqi army divisions to the advancing coalition forces. Fairclough's plan sowed distrust, division and confusion among Saddam Hussain's "elite" and the army as they had no way of telling who had signed up, if anyone, and why those contacted had been selected for such "treacherous" reasons (e.g. because they were known or suspected dissenters). It is not known how many Iraqi army divisions were affected by this ploy.
• Scandals involving The Money Portal, its regulators and other notable City grandees commencing in 2004: as referred to under the heading "Other Organizations" in the section entitled “Overt Professional Life” above. The scandals lasted several years and some of those involved were imprisoned. The scandals were alleged to include the second largest pension funds fraud ever in the UK after that of Robert Maxwell, whose empire was once a Coopers & Lybrand client which Fairclough had (coincidentally) also investigated.
• Edward Snowden's whereabouts and activities (often reported ahead of the global media): as reported in several news articles published by Faire Sans Dire about Edward Snowden and the Optic Nerve (GCHQ) surveillance scandal and PRISM scandal plus other "supposedly secret" cyberspace surveillance operations. The articles were published between 17 February 2012 (long before Edward Snowden was headlining global media) and 27 February 2014. The articles' titles do not necessarily indicate they were about Edward Snowden and are still accessible via Faire Sans Dire. It is of note that Edward Snowden's disclosures, like Julian Assange's leaks via WikiLeaks rarely (if ever) directly alleged "wrongdoing" by Russia, China and other non-NATO major cyberspace "actors". It's interesting to note that Edward Snowden first fled to China and then moved to Russia: what a coincidence!
• Companies House records in the UK: as disclosed in a satirical article by Bill Fairclough on LinkedIn dated 6 November 2015 entitled “The UK Government Admits 945-Year-Old Director Found Alive and Still Active”. The article was also published by Faire Sans Dire pursuant to a Freedom of Information Request and unearthed some extraordinary facts about "English" company directors. This may account for other references herein as to just how confusing and misleading the results of basic Companies House searches can be.
• Bizarre mistakes, frauds, misdemeanours, malpractices and crimes encountered by Faire Sans Dire since the seventies: as disclosed in a Faire Sans Dire news article entitled “Background Checks & Tales of the Unexpected” dated 3 September 2016. The pot pourri of assignments and investigations referred to by Faire Sans Dire include some crass errors by not just Faire Sans Dire's clients, who are anonymously referred to, but also law enforcement agencies such as the FBI.
Some of the few examples cited above lasted years and comprised dozens of interconnected assignments and investigations involving many of Faire Sans Dire's associates. The examples disclosed disregard Bill Fairclough’s or Faire Sans Dire's participation over many decades in run of the mill assignments or investigations into quotidian frauds/deceptions in the bricks and mortar or cyberspace worlds or where they converged. Given that Faire Sans Dire had representatives or associates in over 120 jurisdictions it is easy to see how over the decades it became involved in many assignments and investigations.
Faire Sans Dire's staple diet included investigating allegations relating to: governmental corruption, industrial espionage, terrorism funding, intellectual property theft, bribery, coercion, blackmail, insider trading, boiler room dealing, front running program trades, investment scams, falsified asset valuations, falsified prospectuses, related supplier and/or customer invoicing frauds, collusive accounting frauds, tax frauds, forgery, fraudulent related party transactions, cyber-attacks et al, data deletion or loss, money laundering, wire transfer frauds, expenses frauds, conflicts of interest, regulatory breaches, Nigerian/Ghanaian scams, security breaches, criminal “offshore” activities, family trust/divorce disputes and straightforward thefts and other crimes.
Legal & Related Issues
For legal, security, practical and other reasons, it is impossible and would be imprudent to provide detailed citations evidencing who was involved in what, where, when, how and why in the investigations and assignments referred to above. However, many of the assignments referred to above are cited in The Burlington Files series of autobiographical novels with detailed timelines divulged in the first book published. When viewed in conjunction with Bill Fairclough's overt career and occasional Faire Sans Dire press releases and statements since 2010, to some extent that confirms that such activities took place without compromising any persons or organizations involved.
Other than as explained and disclosed herein and in The Burlington Files series (to the extent it is published), Bill Fairclough’s and Faire Sans Dire's involvement in assignments shall remain forever confidential as has been the case during the last four decades or so. Interestingly, much of the information in the public domain concerning Bill Fairclough's investigations into The Money Portal scandals (the only “leaked” assignment) has never been put into its proper international perspective. It is unlikely that Faire Sans Dire's involvement will ever be explained in full for legal reasons but what appears on the web about The Money Portal plc is in some instances as far removed from the truth as Donald Trump's perception of himself!
Perilous & Bizarre Moments
The following disclosures in this section of Bill Fairclough’s biography were obtained from Bill during the course of several interviews. He did insist on the right to edit them and rewrote most of them. He also had the right of veto which he exercised. He invoked the fifth amendment several times. In fact, to put that into perspective, about 100 “memorable moments", drawn up when preparing The Burlington Files, were completely redacted from a list of a few hundred interesting adages, about 80 of which are included below.
Some of the details of his life-threatening or near-death incidents and other bizarre experiences summarised below have been partially redacted or masked to some degree for legal reasons. Also, most of those incidents that are dealt with in The Burlington Files series have been given short-shrift or completely omitted to avoid “spoilers”. In addition, it was agreed that for security and related reasons, no incidents that occurred after 1991 relating to this ostensible jeopardy-junkie would yet be disclosed in this section of his biography.
If these disclosures appear a tad far-fetched then it should be borne in mind that more bizarre, death-defying and life-threatening incidents were omitted than have been published. Furthermore, many of the more bizarre and more complex events disclosed here have been redacted or masked for legal reasons. In addition, there are no direct references whatsoever to any of Bill Fairclough’s or Faire Sans Dire's assignments and/or investigations, many examples of which are disclosed above.
Perilous Moments 1955/1967
While living in Billingham and Norton Stockton-on-Tees in the North of England in the fifties and early sixties Bill Fairclough survived a few narrow escapes from death, all of which involved his brother Peter (called Hugh in The Burlington Files series). Their mother (called Sara in The Burlington Files series) was his saviour on more than one occasion and also a victim.
• In 1956 Peter persuaded Bill to parachute from the top of their three-storey home onto a concrete pathway at the bottom of the garden some 40 feet below. He survived uninjured after landing in a bush by mistake.
• In 1957 during a bit of rough and tumble in the back of their parents’ old Rover 12 car, Peter pushed Bill out of the car while travelling at 50 mph. He just bounced along a grass verge by the side of the road until his mother stopped to admonish Peter and collect her youngest son who was shaken but not stirred.
• In 1958 Bill fell through the ice on Norton duck pond into about four feet of icy water. He nearly drowned but was rescued just in time. He soon recovered after a bout of hypothermia. Again, it was arguably Peter’s fault as he had dared his younger brother to walk across the iced-over pond.
• Their mother was sometimes the victim though. She passed out as Bill chased Peter across the main road running through Norton Green. Peter had run across the road before two buses going in opposite directions passed by. Bill gave chase without looking and somehow ran unscathed between the buses, both of which ended up on the pavements on opposite sides of the road. Most would have thought that nothing could faze Sara Burlington.
• Bill got acute appendicitis while on a school sponsored tour in the Alps and nearly died. He was rushed to a hospital in Innsbruck, Austria and underwent an emergency operation in the nick of time. By the time he came around, the school group which included his brother, had left for England. The local Cardinal, later to become Pope John Paul 2, visited him as did his mother whom the press described as being in a “mercy dash” to save him. In the confusion, no one remembered he didn’t have his own passport, having been on the school “group passport”. That didn’t faze his mother who calmly smuggled him across four borders back to England. What else would you expect from Sara Burlington? Mind you, as you would expect of Bill, this was but one of three holidays in a row in the early sixties fraught with danger (as noted above). On the other two holidays his boat sank and the flat he stayed in was burnt to ashes. Whether the brothers in anyway contributed to these calamities can only be the subject of speculation.
• Once ensconced in St Peter's School York, Bill’s appetite for risk taking increased exponentially yet in contrast with his earlier days, while at boarding school the nearest thing to a life-threatening event arose was when blowing up a derelict house on Clifton Ings. The home-made explosives had been obtained during the course of weeks of chemistry lessons, but the fuse failed. Accordingly, a makeshift substitute, a piece of paper, was used and it only lasted seconds before triggering an almighty explosion.
Bizarre Events 1955/1967
At Red House School, a preparatory school in Norton, Stockton-on-Tees, it wasn’t long before Peter and Bill were nicknamed the terrible twins even though Peter was the elder by some 18 months. They caused havoc wherever they went in those golden days in the fifties and early sixties.
• The twins faced attempted murder charges in 1958 for bombarding their sunbathing neighbours with sharpened bamboo canes. This was in their Cowboy and Indian phase when, on being invited to parties, they had been known to bring other people’s horses along and tie them up inside if it was raining or snowing outside. The attempted murder charges were dropped once the police established their ages and no life changing damage was done to those of their neighbours and their guests who were admitted to hospital.
• In 1958 Bill was almost expelled for misbehaviour in Latin classes supervised by Bertram Surtees-Raine, the headmaster. On being asked to translate “was” (fuit) he “accidentally” inserted a “ck” in the translation. His parents persuaded Surtees-Raine, a quite formidable character, to be lenient. It “was”, after all, an innocent slip-up! Later that year he was nearly expelled again. This time he got into a fight with another boy and broke a master’s tyre pump over his head. His parents persuaded Surtees-Raine to be lenient again because the boy was older than their youngest son and shouldn’t have picked a fight in the first place. More importantly, they bought a brand-new replacement tyre pump.
• Bill started smoking in 1959 and drinking in 1961 while at Red House School. He only stopped in 2011 which, when added together, represented 100 years of sin. At about that time in 1960 he was yet again nearly expelled, despite having pleased Surtees-Raine by passing the 11+ exams with flying colours when only ten years’ old. On this near expulsion occasion Bill was displaying his leadership qualities during a snow storm. He led a hand-picked team of precision snow-ballers, including his brother, and “surrounded” a nearby school. No one could come or go for about an hour without being pelted with snowballs. The police were called but the hostage takers had melted away. On interrogation by Surtees-Raine, the headmaster noted that all those rounded up for missing lessons were all each other’s alibis. This was essential training for Bill’s future.
• However, Bill had inherited a ruthless streak and in 1961 carried out a revenge attack on someone who had pulled a chair from underneath him thereby fracturing his coccyx which still haunts him with pain decades later. As one would expect, he blew up the boy’s father’s Bentley R to remind him he would never be safe again. The improvised explosive device was a large banger and the car’s petrol tank. It was a taste of the future for this nasty kid (not Bill!) as in order to escape Bill’s fury some ten years later, he had to leave England for good in one hell of a hurry.
• Bill’s final near expulsion from Red House School was for assaulting a visiting football team. His distraught parents persuaded Surtees-Raine to be lenient again on the grounds that surely just one of his pupils accompanied by a friend wouldn’t take on an entire football team unless they had been brutally provoked. Nevertheless, before leaving Red House School, Bill was drummed out of the scouts. A special ceremony took place during which all his badges and medals were cut off in front of the whole scout troop. Allegedly, Bill had not been “clean in thought, word and deed”. He claimed he had been seduced by the new petite trainee French teacher. She claimed assault. It boiled down to her word against his and Surtees-Raine wasn’t sure who to believe so there was no expulsion, just a humiliating ceremony. At that time no one had the proof Bill was gifted a few years later when he “accidentally” bumped into her near Quimper in Brittany, France.
• Talking of gifts, while still living in Norton, Bill was given a puppy by a friend and hid Scamp the puppy in the annexe he lived in knowing his parents would object if they found out. After a couple of weeks, Tigger the cat found Scamp the puppy and brought him into the living room by the scruff of his neck while the family were all watching television. A few weeks later Bill’s parents had Scamp put down.
• Sara, Bill’s mother, understandably kept an eye out after the French mistress episode. In fact, she spied on her younger son and on a later occasion put a knife to his throat and swore she would kill him if he made anyone pregnant. But all’s well that ends well. Bill’s father didn’t believe his youngest son when he called to say he had won a full fee-paying scholarship to St Peter's School York. His incredulity was understandable. Even Bertram Surtees-Raine felt his tolerance had been vindicated and J W P Fairclough’s success was etched in history onto the plaque in the assembly hall listing Red House School's few scholars.
Armed with a scholarship Bill headed for boarding school. As his father said, “God help them.” During his time at St Peter's School York, as already noted, Bill was far from a saint but being a scholar made him safe from expulsion despite being perpetually in trouble for drinking, smoking and other law-breaking. He was gated for well over 50% of his time at school which meant that every ten minutes outside of lessons he had to get a master’s or prefect’s signature to prove he was still on the premises; when attending lessons, he had to collect signatures too.
According to two masters at St Peter's School York in the sixties, to the best of their knowledge Bill Fairclough was the most gated, beaten and punished boy in the school’s history since it was founded by St Paulinus of York in 627AD. They should have known too. One of them, Mr F J Wiseman (a Latin teacher) wrote the official “Recent History of St Peter's School” and the other, a house master (of School House) and history teacher called Mr K H Rhodes, helped Mr Wiseman write the book because of his unique knowledge of the school. Ignoring three years at university, Mr Rhodes had spent his entire life at the school having literally been born on the premises.
A few examples of Bill’s exemplary behaviour are worth citing to give a flavour of what St Peter's School York had to put up with. It goes without saying that he denied any involvement in some of these matters.
• Underneath what was the Manor House, a few rooms were secretly built by the pupils for recreational purposes such as smoking and drinking. Needless to say, Bill was a regular visitor. They may still exist.
• On one occasion in the sixties a master was shot. Apparently, no one held a grudge against the master concerned. Those involved were allegedly just testing the gun’s iron sights. The master recovered.
• Just as Bill had been ceremoniously removed from the scouts, so he was unceremoniously removed from St Peter's School's Combined Cadet Force. While on a shooting range he orchestrated the eradication of self-selected targets with his fellow classmates instead of shooting as instructed at the intended targets. Maybe the UK Ministry of Defence should have noted this incident.
• Bill “accidentally” became involved in a protection racket. At the time he was the youngest person ever to be named in a phone-tap court order. Before going to boarding school, he was already earning more than the average family in the UK courtesy of his having become a successful numismatist so naturally when asked to sell large numbers of rare gold coins he obliged without giving it a second thought. What fourteen-year-old numismatist wouldn’t? The treasure trove of coins, which were worth about £100 each and was a lot in those days, had been stolen to pay off gambling debts accumulated in an illegal casino in York, allegedly run by people connected to the school. Well, they had to be, or they wouldn’t have approached Bill via an older pupil. Precisely what Bill knew at the time is unknown, but he also had free supplies of some of the best Brazilian cigars you could buy in the UK in the sixties.
• Turning to more mundane matters, Bill was arrested for under-age drinking on more than one occasion in more than one country but often carried his brother Peter’s ID with him which helped minimise the number of times he was caught ... except when they were out causing trouble together.
• As for driving laws, Bill bought his first car in 1966 before he was legally old enough to drive. He didn’t bother about trivial issues such as a driving license, car insurance, car tax or MOT testing for the cars he bought and sold … until he had crashed a few. Allegedly, his brother’s driving license helped him avoid being arrested on several occasions. Nevertheless, the police reported him (or his brother!) for various offences to either his parents or Mr J Dronfield or Mr P D R Gardiner, St Peter's School's headmasters in 1966 and 1967 respectively which was when Bill always had a car stashed away in a rented garage a stone's throw from the Manor House in which he was a boarder. It was easier to escape being gated that way ... once he had forged the requisite signatures or absented himself from lessons on medical grounds.
Bill Fairclough’s life was hectic on many simultaneous fronts after leaving St Peter's School York in 1967, qualifying as a Chartered Accountant and later leaving the UK for the Bahamas in 1974. His activities in 1974 were as narrated in Beyond Enkription, the first novel in The Burlington Files series. From 1967 to 1973 he was involved in night clubs, casinos, discos and the music business while supposedly studying to become a Chartered Accountant at Coopers & Lybrand. He also became ensnared in and infiltrated organised crime gangs while unwittingly working for MI6 and Special Branch.
Perilous Moments 1967/1973
• As a sign of things to come, Bill failed his first driving test after driving into a lorry but more seriously, while driving a DAF 55 in the early hours after a heavy drinking session in Croft Spa near Darlington in the late sixties, Bill hit an obstruction in the road and plummeted down an almost sheer fifty-feet drop. He was temporarily concussed and awoke to find himself covered in petrol and trapped inside an upside-down car which was wedged between rocks. His first thought was “where’s the cigarette I was smoking”! He managed to force a buckled door to bend enough to escape. A local farmer had called the emergency services and Bill lived to die another day. Contrary to the advice given to him by the farmer, Bill managed to help himself to a large whiskey before the police arrived thereby rendering any attempts to breathalyse him futile; the law has changed since then.
• Following a large win at a casino in Stockton-on-Tees, Bill decided to fly to Nice in France. From there he hitch-hiked to Ventimiglia in Italy on the French/Italian border to see his girlfriend. On the way back, he lost all his money in a casino in Menton in France which didn’t help matters as he was feeling extremely unwell. He lay low in the luxury of the plush Hotel Negresco in Nice for a couple of nights and was repatriated by the British Consulate. In the Hotel Negresco, he secretly stayed in one of their lounges for free. On repatriation, he was flown out as the sole first-class passenger, the front of the plane having been screened off from other passengers. On landing he was taken by ambulance to hospital where he was diagnosed as seriously ill with some form of typhus.
• In the late sixties, near Hartlepool in the North of England, Bill avoided what he thought was going to be a gangland style execution by jumping out of a car as it pulled up to a roundabout. The car was being driven by a night club owner he knew. Coincidentally, the club was torched that night. Those allegedly responsible for the arson were the Luvaglio mob (involved in the infamous one-armed bandit murder in 1967) on which the original film “Get Carter” starring Michael Caine was based. However, many thought the Kray brothers might have been responsible as Luvaglio claimed he had been framed by them.
• In Darlington, again in the sixties in the North of England, two bouncers known to Bill had been following him and attempted to murder him. He left them alive, hanging from a lamppost by the chains they had on them which they had tried to tie him up with before abducting him and disposing of his body.
• In Stockton-on-Tees an attack by thirty or so “mercenaries” on a night club Bill was involved in was repelled. It was believed that the attackers were hired by gangsters from the West End of London. Several of the bouncers defending the club suffered irreparable brain damage and other injuries from which they never recovered or died soon afterwards. The same could be said of those carrying out the attack.
• In 1971 Bill was driving down South and raced his father’s high-powered Hillman Hunter with a sports car. The race ended up in a forty vehicle pile-up thanks mainly to the sports car braking too hard. After checking those involved were uninjured, Bill drove away thinking his father’s car had only suffered minor bumps and bruises. He collected his brother Peter from Oxford and drove up North at speed. The car was taken to a garage for minor repairs, but he was told it was too dangerous to drive and was scrapped. The mechanic could not believe the car had just travelled over 200 miles at an average speed of 80 to 90 mph.
• Later in 1971, Bill was walking along the beach at Seaton Carew in the North of England with an old friend who was gesticulating with his hand when a thirty-two caliber bullet lodged in the back of it. The trajectory of the bullet was such that had it not hit his hand Bill would have died instantly from a shot to the head. It was probably fired using a Remington rifle. The assassin was never traced but it is thought those who had bought the lease to a defunct night club may have been responsible. Bill was present when the lease was sold.
• At a party in the North of England in 1971 several armed gangsters tried to shoot their way in to get Bill. They were shot at and fled. Sadly, some of them were injured.
• In 1972 in the Cromwell Road in London Bill was shot at several times after leaving the Cromwellian Club. He had been trying to get the hostesses to go on strike. The club frequently changed ownership. Over the years it was used by the likes of Jimi Hendrix, The Animals (whom Bill had known from his days up North) and Elton John. It was one of Bill’s favourite haunts for over a decade.
• In 1973 on bonfire night Bill and a girlfriend of his were visiting a night club in Soho. She threw some fire-crackers over the bar for a laugh, but it backfired. Several guests drew hand guns and started shooting at one another. Miraculously no one was shot dead or even injured by shrapnel.
Bizarre Events 1967/1973
• In 1969 in Stockton-on-Tees Bill was breathalysed over 100 times outside one of “his” night clubs. If he ever tested positive the police would take him and his car home.
• In 1969 the police chased Bill across the Yorkshire Moors but lost him. He slept that night at a stranger’s house lying on some coal buckets to keep dry.
• In 1970 after a visit to “Change Is” night club (owned by Bob Monkhouse) in Newcastle-upon-Tyne in the North of England, Bill was told he had a Chartered Accountancy qualification exam on bankruptcy and liquidations in the morning. At about 2.00am, somewhat worse for wear, he borrowed a book on the subject and read it. Previously, he had no idea those subjects were on the syllabus, but it was only then when he was 20 that he discovered he had a photographic memory. He passed the exam.
• In 1970 he rented a four bedroom flat above a fish and chip shop for £3 a week. It was by the docks in Portrack Stockton-on-Tees, surrounded by a gypsy encampment and next to two huge reeking collapsible gas storage cylinders. If you left a window open the duvet would soon accumulate a centimeter or so of grease.
• In 1971 while on a holiday in the UK yet another cabin cruiser Bill was sailing on was holed and nearly sank.
• In 1972 Bill travelled from Jesmond in Newcastle-upon-Tyne to Piccadilly Circus in London within three hours in his modified Jaguar Mark 1. That’s about 280 miles at an average speed of knocking on 100 mph. To many notable drivers, including Stirling Moss, Mike Hawthorn, Tommy Sopwith, and Roy Salvadori, who had raced in that model of the Jaguar Mark 1, Bill was driving quite sedately really.
• In the early seventies if Bill lost at the Mazurka Casino in Soho London he would usually stay the rest of the night in the luxurious and secure men’s toilets at Euston Station. They were individually large enough to lie down in, always thoroughly cleaned at about 2.00am every morning and only cost 2p a night. What’s more, a free bath and breakfast was always available at certain Bloomsbury hotels if you knew how to con your way past their receptionists.
• In Paris, France in 1972 Bill was on his way to see an Ange concert. He later co-managed Ange, a French rock band. The taxi driver said it might be difficult to get there because of the riots going on outside a nearby Rolling Stones concert. In fact, there wasn’t even a queue outside the Rolling Stones' concert and the rioting was fans trying to get into the Ange concert.
Perilous Moments 1974
Without wishing to spoil the book it can be said that Bill obviously survived beyond then and that as the book is based on Bill’s life and experiences, one can conclude that in 1974 he survived: four attempted murders in the UK; one close encounter with a black gang in Chicago's South Side; one attempted murder in Brazil; one attempted murder in the Bahamas; and two attempted murders in Haiti.
Bizarre Events 1974
All the bizarre events relating to Bill’s activities in 1974 are covered in the novel, Beyond Enkription.
As indicated earlier, the more recent the events the less information is available in the public domain for legal reasons or it has not been released to prevent “spoiling” the remaining books in The Burlington Files series, the next of which is Beyond Dekription, set in 1984. Nevertheless, there are some disclosures up to 1991 made below that may be of interest. Since 1991 Bill Fairclough has survived eight life-threatening situations. The last known attempt on Bill’s life was in 2012 in South America, almost exactly a year after he had a debilitating stroke which forced him into a wheel chair for a few months.
Perilous Moments 1975/1991
• In 1975 while swimming off Governor’s Beach (just West of the Nassau Beach Hotel) in New Providence Island in the Bahamas, Bill was surrounded by a shoal of barracuda. He had to undergo on the spot training in how to float back to land with his arms out of the water by a Cuban who’d lost part of his stomach to a shark. Afterwards Bill confessed that he had never sweated in water before in his life.
• The window in a private jet Bill was flying on in 1976 was smashed into smithereens by one of Bill’s briefcases that “took off” during a turbulent flight over the Dominican Republic on the way to Port Au Prince.
• In the late seventies Bill survived a head-on car crash. The other party involved was not so lucky. He was allegedly the leader of a criminal organisation.
• On another flight from Nassau in 1977, Bill was with a friend who just so happened to be a pilot. He noticed that the wheels may have jammed as it was coming into land at JFK Airport in New York. He ran down the aisle to warn the pilot just in time to avert a crash. The plane took off seconds before touching down and once the wheel mechanisms were working properly it landed perfectly some thirty minutes later.
• In the late seventies in Nassau International Airport a senior Bahamian government official placed Bill in an airport warehouse and told him to find his suitcases. The warehouse had a corrugated iron roof, there were no windows, the doors were shut, and it was midday. He found his cases at the bottom of a pile from a jumbo jet after two hours lugging other cases aside. He nearly died from a heart attack according to the doctor who saw him afterwards.
• In the late seventies a storm struck Toronto when Bill was working there. He and his colleagues had to be moved several blocks “by rope” as furniture swirled around them.
• In 1979 Bill landed at Heathrow Airport after having been diverted to Prestwick Airport (in Scotland) because of blizzards. All he had on was beach attire having left the Caribbean in haste. After attending a meeting in Whitehall, he went to a flat in Lambeth where he was savagely attacked but with the help of others chased off the intruders.
• In 1979 while heading to pick up a car that had been booked for him to collect at Miami International Airport Bill was shot at. To this day he still believes it may have been a case of mistaken identity.
• In 1983 while swimming off the West coast of Fiji, a four to five-foot sea snake wrapped itself round one of his legs and slithered upwards. Part of this tidbit may have been redacted but Bill was not!
• In 1983 while deep sea fishing off Oahu in Hawaii Bill along with several other tourists nearly drowned in an unexpected storm. The waves were over 40 feet high and everybody on board bar the captain was tied together and tied to life rafts.
• In 1985 in Europe Bill was shot at in a night club but escaped after a vicious fight ensued high up on a fire escape.
• Later in 1985 in Malta Bill was poisoned after inexplicably being bitten by mosquitoes. There were over 200 bites on his back alone. When he woke up he was in London's Hospital for Tropical Diseases. Not long afterwards he was poisoned again, this time by unwittingly consuming a drink laced with an overdose of lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD). As that didn’t work either he was poisoned again a month or so later, this time while eating a very tasty steak, but that failed too.
• Indeed, 1985 was not a year Bill may want to remember. In a high-speed car chase heading South down the M1 motorway in England, the other driver somehow jettisoned some of his car’s under-carriage which just missed Bill’s car.
• Again in 1985, while driving at about 100 mph heading South down the M1 motorway in England, one of Bill’s car wheels burst into flames. He never discovered why and nor did the police when the bomb squad took his car away for inspection not long afterwards having received intelligence that his car had been fixed.
• In Rio de Janeiro in 1987 Bill survived yet another abduction and murder attempt on the way to the airport but he used a pen to cut the neck of the driver and forced him to change direction thereby getting to the airport on time.
• In London in 1989 Bill woke up to find his flat littered with burnt matches and burn marks all over the carpets. He assumed he had been drugged but never found out the real name of the seductress responsible for the attempted arson.
• In 1991 Bill was reported as having been murdered. He had indeed survived a knife attack outside a Hong Kong night club in the early hours. What concerned Bill more than the failed attack on his person was how on earth the person who had made the report was so sure he had been murdered.
• In 1991 while on his way from London to New York Bill stopped off in St Lucia for a well-deserved break. He had a jet-ski race with another hotel guest and won outright. It was a Pyrrhic victory though because he had run out of fuel, couldn’t even see land, dusk was settling fast as it does in the Caribbean, he had no lights and no cigarettes. Luckily one of several fishing boats sent out to find him did so and towed him back in the dark.
Bizarre Events 1975/1991
• Bill became involved with a Columbian gang who like George Cockcroft alias Luke Rhinehart, the author of The Dice Man, lived by the throw of a dice. They were based in 48 Harley Street London in the late seventies and could often be seen going up and down Harley Street naked, much to the amusement of the girls from the Queen’s College opposite! The gang used to select which crimes they would commit when and how in which countries by the throw of a dice.
• An area known as “over the hill” in Nassau on the South side of New Providence Island in the Bahamas was inhabited exclusively by blacks in the seventies. However, Bill was the only white welcomed in their clubs and only once experienced an unpleasant racial incident.
• In 1976 Bill became unintentionally involved in the Sex Pistols fiasco on the Bill Grundy television programme. A friend of his along with Malcolm McLaren had funded their forthcoming tours which were by and large cancelled and all the deposits on halls booked for the tours were forfeited courtesy of morality clauses. His accurate recollections of bankruptcy laws proved invaluable.
• Some PricewaterhouseCoopers partners worked out that during his lifetime Bill had consumed more meals at Simpsons in the Strand in London than anyone else since it was founded in 1828. However, as one of them succinctly put it, proving it would be difficult given all the pseudonyms he had used to make reservations.
• One weekend in 1984 Bill flew from London to Hong Kong and back just to attend a party. The next year he arrived in Auckland New Zealand on an Easter weekend only to find he couldn’t even buy a drink in his hotel: he had to buy a take-away bottle of wine from a nearby brothel. He left for Sydney in the morning.
• In 1985 while in Athens at a large corporate gathering Bill threw the wrong sort of plate which hit the guy performing on stage head on.
• In 1985 Bill attended a meeting at a pub in Puddle Dock in London after being released from police protective custody up North. Despite it being only about 11.30am there were over a dozen people in the pub all dressed identically in beige trench coats with matching hats on. He was only meant to meet one person described thus. Someone must have been taking the Michael.
• In 1990 while undertaking surveillance for Bill in London, those involved played back some of the tape and realised they had unintentionally taken pictures of what turned out to be a totally separate incident, a murder.
• In 1991 Bill’s maritime skills surpassed themselves when within two consecutive months he crashed a speedboat just outside Saint-Jean-Cap-Ferrat in the South of France and then had to abandon a sinking rowing boat in the Serpentine Lake in London's Hyde Park.
• After the fire at Barclays' Mercantile Credit Head Office in Basingstoke in 1991 Bill had to try and rescue his bulletproof briefcase from his office which was almost inaccessible as the twelfth floor where it was situated had been gutted by the fire. With the help of some experts he managed to walk along the girders high up in the building and recover the remains of his briefcase. Apart from the fact that a pentel pen had exploded inside the briefcase in the heat, its contents were still in perfect shape.
Bill Fairclough started writing The Burlington Files in 1975. However, it was only in 2009 that work on the project began in earnest. The Burlington Files series is based on Bill Fairclough’s experiences running a double or triple life including the activities undertaken by Faire Sans Dire which he controlled. The intellectual property rights of The Burlington Files are vested in an English company, The Burlington Files Limited and its subsidiary companies.
Beyond Enkription is the first stand-alone novel (written for film adaptation) in the series to be published. At circa 180,000 words it is believed to be the longest spy novel published in the 21st century or was so at the time of publication. It took circa 10,000 hours to write and research. For most people working in the UK that is equivalent to more than five years’ work and that is for just one book in the series. Part of the core plot in Beyond Enkription is centred on the misspelling of “encryption”.
There are expected to be six autobiographical novels in the series. Beyond Dekription, the second novel, has been drafted and is undergoing a review and editing prior to its publication. The other novels are at varying stages of production. All the novels were written in such a way that they could more easily be converted to become the bases for either full length feature films and/or television series. Bill called them novelogs and they are not dissimilar to grown up versions of Anne Frank's Diaries.
In summary, The Burlington Files is a series of unusual espionage novels based mainly on the life of Bill Fairclough aka Edward Burlington and loosely on the lives of his family and his colleagues. Many of them worked for decades as governmental employees or assets or employees of intelligence agencies such as the CIA or MI6 (and indeed privately for Faire Sans Dire itself). The action and plots rapidly spread across the globe as time passes. The series covers a chain of interconnected plots (and family life) running from the Second World War through to the Edward Snowden era.
Beyond Enkription is a stand-alone novel set in 1974 in the heart of the disco fevered seventies, the (First) Cold War and the escalating Irish Troubles in the purportedly united British Isles. It features, among others, Roger and Sara Burlington, Edward's parents, who have been involved in espionage since 1939. While Roger is still a member of the Joint Intelligence Committee, Sara’s address book appears to be more like a Who's Who of NATO's intelligence services than a housewife’s little black book. Both Roger and Sara desperately wanted their sons, Hugh and Edward, to follow in their footsteps but things didn’t go to plan given Edward’s rebellious nature.
Consequently, Edward unwittingly ends up working as an MI6 asset. Early in 1974 he is nearly killed not once, but four times. Indirectly it is all MI6's fault so far as his parents are concerned. Sara decides someone high up in MI6 must pay and persuades Roger to exact revenge. Meanwhile Edward is sent to supposed safety from London town to Nassau in the Bahamas to continue his career as an accountant.
However, the CIA has a representative on the Joint Intelligence Committee and is therefore already aware of Edward’s exploits and capabilities. They turn him into their asset within 48 hours of his landing in Nassau. Meanwhile Edward's brother Hugh seems to be somehow involved with MI6 and that relationship becomes increasingly intriguing as the entangled plots and layered webs of deceit, betrayal and revenge reverberate across the world and throughout the Burlington family and their trusted supporters.
Web-links & Other Data
There are many interesting web-links to Bill Fairclough and his past personal and/or business activities as explained in https://steemit.com/introducemyself/@burlingtonfiles/tales-of-the-unexpected-fact-checking-disinformation-unredacted. Not necessarily mutually exclusive to the web-links etc set out in the formal References to this article are some interesting links and facts about Bill Fairclough and Faire Sans Dire which are set out below.
Barclays Group https://everipedia.org/wiki/Barclays/
Beyond Enkription https://www.amazon.co.uk/Beyond-Enkription-Burlington-Files-1/dp/1497314186 and https://www.bookfinder.com/search/?ac=sl&st=sl&ref=bf_s2_a1_t1_1&qi=X.Sr6mbI2JIULNzbNYX4WQtpDrk_1497963026_1:2:1&bq=author%3Dbill%2520fairclough%26title%3Dbeyond%2520enkription%2520%2D%2520the%2520burlington%2520files
Bill Fairclough Recent Directorships http://companycheck.co.uk/director/906528948/MR-JOHN-WILLIAM-PERCY-FAIRCLOUGH-FCA-MSI-MCT and https://opencorporates.com/officers?q=John+William+Percy+Fairclough&utf8=%E2%9C%93 and https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/officers/xO1Q7Tk3htRGf497OL_Qg3xznqs/appointments (Please note that Bill Fairclough's directorships in his early life are not included in the computerized records currently accessible by normal Companies House searches.)
Coopers & Lybrand https://everipedia.org/wiki/pricewaterhousecoopers/#coopers-lybrand
Facebook https://www.facebook.com/theburlingtonfiles and https://www.facebook.com/CaguioaFairclough
Faire Sans Dire Co-founders http://www.fairesansdire.org/about-us/index.php
(1) Alan Brooke Pemberton CVO MBE http://yeomenoftheguard.com/officerimages.htm#pemberton and No. 112 at http://yeomenoftheguard.com/exons.htm
(2) Barrie Northend Parkes MBE http://companycheck.co.uk/director/904498710/MR-BARRIE-NORTHEND-PARKES (Barrie Parkes was best man at Bill Fairclough's wedding in 1996.)
Faire Sans Dire History http://www.fairesansdire.org/about-us/index.php
Faire Sans Dire Limited Past Directors http://www.fairesansdire.org/about-us/index.php and http://companycheck.co.uk/director/904498710/MR-BARRIE-NORTHEND-PARKES and http://companycheck.co.uk/company/06552657/FAIRE-SANS-DIRE-LIMITED/directors-secretaries (Please note that in order to avoid conflicts of interest (e.g. when working with Kroll), from time to time Charles Fairclough had to resign his directorship and then be reappointed as a director.)
Intelligence Online https://www.intelligenceonline.com/search?sqe=QmlsbCBGYWlyY2xvdWdo0
ISBN Numbers for Beyond Enkription ISBN 10: 1497314186 and ISBN 13: 9781497314184; Library of Congress Control Number: 2014906166; CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform North Charleston South Carolina USA; and ISBN 13: 9781909204720 Dolman Scott 1 High Street Thatcham Berkshire RG19 3JG England
LinkedIn https://uk.linkedin.com/in/billfairclough, https://www.linkedin.com/company/2949735, https://www.linkedin.com/company/737209 and https://www.linkedin.com/groups/4848897
Locations Details of locations Bill Fairclough lived in or operated from for protracted periods in England (excluding those not disclosed for reasons of confidentiality) were as set out below. To see the precise locations please use Google Maps or similar.
(1) Locations in Northumberland & County Durham: 4 Bank Road Billingham; The White House Norton Green Stockton-on-Tees; 13 Castle Close Middleton St George Darlington; and several other locations in Portrack (Stockton-on-Tees); Middlesbrough; and Jesmond (Newcastle-upon-Tyne)
(2) Locations in Central London: 13 Montagu Square W1; 4 Quebec Mews W1; 65 Harley Street W1; 17 Draycott Avenue SW3; 51 Thurloe Square SW7; 124 Regents Park Road Primrose Hill NW1; 21 Rosslyn Hill Hampstead NW3; 238 Randolph Avenue Maida Vale W9; 5 Hamilton Place W1; 107 Sussex Gardens, Radnor Place W2 and several locations in the City of London
London Espionage Tours http://www.theburlingtonfiles.org/indexd4a6.html?p=124 (Tours are currently only available based on Bill Fairclough's life in London in 1974.)
News @ Faire Sans Dire http://www.fairesansdire.org/news/index.php (This page contains dozens of articles and press releases relating to Faire Sans Dire's activities.)
News @ The Burlington Files http://www.theburlingtonfiles.org/index3f7b.html?cat=2 (This page contains several articles and press releases mostly relevant to the production of The Burlington Files.)
Reviews of Beyond Enkription http://www.theburlingtonfiles.org/page/endorsements (The web-page linked to contains links to most of the reviews of Beyond Enkription as a book written for film adaptation as opposed to a novel per se.)
Secret Tours http://www.henriettaferguson.com/top-secret (Tours are currently only available based on Bill Fairclough's life in London in 1974.)
Social Links http://www.theburlingtonfiles.org/page/social-links
The Burlington Files Limited http://companycheck.co.uk/company/08005044/THE-BURLINGTON-FILES-LIMITED/directors-secretaries
The Burlington Files Group https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/company/08005044 (The Burlington Files Limited has two wholly owned subsidiary companies, Enkription Limited and Dekription Limited.)
The Money Portal Scandal 1 http://citywire.co.uk/new-model-adviser/news/the-money-portal-trial-a-tale-of-pillocks-parasites-and-aberdeen/a269307
The Money Portal Scandal 2 http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2134516/Pension-fund-boss-stole-52million-fund-lavish-lifestyle-pay-ex-wife.html
The Money Portal Settlement Arrangements http://citywire.co.uk/new-model-adviser/news/tmp-ends-bitter-battle-with-former-directors-through-settlement/a275292
The Panama Papers & Faire Sans Dire http://www.fairesansdire.org/the-panama-papers/index.php
Twitter & Faire Sans Dire https://twitter.com/FaireSansDire
Twitter & The Burlington Files https://twitter.com/BurlingtonFiles
Wikipedia & "Bill Fairclough" https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Special:Search&limit=50&offset=0&profile=default&search=bill+fairclough+beyond+enkription&searchToken=a6lnvgkot4cp3mg0yq5p63my0