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Ray Gardner Blasts UK Government in Bid to Help Ltd Companies



1996 Blackcurrent Tango ad is remixed to call for support for freelancers left without any financial help since the start of lockdown

Ray Gardner Blasts UK Government in Bid to Help Ltd Companies
An organisation committed to getting Government help for Britain’s freelancers has enlisted the help of Ray Gardner, iconic former spokesperson for Tango.

Gardner shot to fame in a 1996 advert for Blackcurrant Tango in which he stormed the White Cliffs of Dover after receiving a letter of complaint from a French exchange student named Sebastien. The remake sees him ranting at his Conservative MP, also called Sebastien, as well as Chancellor Rishi Sunak and Boris Johnson.

In his new role as “spokesperson for Britain”, Gardner tells the UK’s leaders that the nation’s army of freelancers and contractors who are set up as Ltd companies are just as deserving as the self-employed who are currently receiving Government aid.

The film was created by Chas Bayfield with help from producer Matt Keen, art director Martin Casson, motion designer James Cook and sound engineer Simon Capes who mixed the original Blackcurrant Tango soundtrack back in 1996. Bayfield, an award-winning creative director co-wrote the original Tango advert which has since been voted one of the best TV commercials ever made. “We felt the time was right to re-release the ad and put it to work again” he said. “If it can get our cause in front of the people who can help us, and leads to freelancers like me being treated the same as self-employed people, then that’s a result.”

Currently, self-employed workers are given up to £2500 a month by the Government. Meanwhile, anyone who has set themselves up as a Ltd Company and who pays themselves via dividends rather than PAYE gets nothing. The exact number of UK workers affected is uncertain but estimates range from a million to 4.3million people. “We pay our taxes like everyone else” says Bayfield who set up the campaigning group, #WeAreLtd with Keen, Casson and Cook earlier this year. “It’s only fair that we are given the same benefits as everyone else.”

Gardner was more than willing to help. “As an actor, our work has been decimated” he said. “I’ll do whatever I can to help this cause and get Britain back on its feet again”.

The film was released today on LinkedIn and is viewable here:

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