Dagenham cancer woman blasts Ford’s threat to repossess her car

Linda Oliver, who is battling breast cancer, with her car.

Linda Oliver, who is battling breast cancer, with her car. - Credit: Archant

A multinational car company is threatening to repossess a vehicle belonging to a cancer-stricken woman, whose illness means she can no longer keep up repayments on it.

Ford is refusing to accept reduced monthly payments on Linda Oliver’s Fiesta Zetec – despite repeated requests from a leading charity for leniency.

The 44-year-old, of Lillechurch Road in Dagenham, was diagnosed with breast cancer in May.

Lump removed

She had a lump removed and is undergoing intense chemotherapy treatment until October, when she will start daily radiotherapy at Queen’s Hospital in Romford.

Linda is also suffering the side-effects of the chemotherapy, which is making her feel weak and sick, as well as an infection in her arm.

The machine operator at Elms Industrial Estate in Harold Wood has been allowed time off work until she completes her treatment.

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She is surviving on the £86 statutory sick pay a week and is struggling to pay her bills – especially her £295-a-month repayments to Ford.

Linda said: “I think they are disgusting for what they are doing to me. They can’t even help for a short while.”

She said she is worried about losing her car, which she needs to get to hospital for treatments.

She added: “This [threat of repossession] is making me even more ill. I am going to counselling and the car payments are stressing me out.”

Six letters

Redbridge Macmillan Advice Project, part of Macmillan Cancer Support, wrote to the car company asking for Linda’s payments to be decreased, but they refused.

A spokesman said: “We have sent six letters to Ford on her behalf. And she has offered to still pay reduced amounts. They have the facility to allow delays to payments, but they don’t seem to want to do it.”

Ford were unavailable for comment, but in a letter to Macmillan, a spokesman said: “We are sorry to hear about Miss Oliver. Unfortunately we are unable to freeze or reduce installments while she is undergoing or recovering from treatment.”

The letter added if Linda wants to keep her car she will have to maintain the installments – or the company will take “further action”.