A hot-shot property tycoon fired off multiple angry e-mails to builders when construction stalled on his £100m dream home, it has been revealed.
Multi-millionaire Giles Mackay, founder of affordable housing provider Assettrust and analytics website Hometrack, has had to pay £2.3m in damages for unpaid work, after a protracted dispute regarding the construction of his new home in Kensington, west London.
During the trial, it emerged that Mackay became enraged by delays in the construction of his new property, and suffered so much mental distress that, by his own admission, he woke up in the morning wanting to kill his architect at Barrett Lloyd Davis.
As the mogul became increasingly frustrated, he began sending angry missives to his contractors at a phenomenal rate, criticising everything from the 'defective plastering' in every room to the orange colour of the floor, and the lack of ballet bars in the gym. In all, he sent more than 3,500 messages.
Mackay, who has previously been a special adviser to several House of Commons inquiries, also resorted to threats, telling architect Barrett Lloyd Davies that "we are nearly at the stage where I can sue you, and frankly I can't wait!"
In another particularly volcanic diatribe, sent to abuilding contractor, the 50-year-old wrote: "My middle name is 'Relentless.'
"I have the money and anger at this point to push on and make sure that you have to deliver, or get punished for not delivering.
"Guess what, when I have forgotten about you in a year's time, enjoying my £100million home or sailing on one of my 40-metre yachts, you'll still be trying to wind up some other poor unsuspecting customer with your brand of mediocrity - a sad loser - gaining your kicks and being irritating.
"Suggest a new career as a traffic warden might be ideal at least it wouldn't involve lying."
'What makes you so chippy, little man?'
As the saga dragged on, Mackay became increasingly patronising, asking one builder "what is it that makes you so chippy, little man?" while telling another: "The nearest to a Ferrari you'll ever get is a toy one."
After receiving an angry e-mail from a key contractor, McKay replied: "Oh no, little guy like you - throws his weight around - big chip on your shoulder - you were definitely bullied at school!!!! Or is it the fact that your little Victorian 1,800 sq ft cottage can fit into my dining room. Or perhaps the fact when you bought it in 2003 the cost was the same as my defective veneer. I'll bet you will lord it in the pub over those neighbours of yours in the cheap semis."
Eventually Mackay decided to withhold payment from one contractor, Walter Llilly & Company, resulting in a £2.3m civil suit from the company.
Although the tycoon counter-sued, he eventually lost the case and received a stern rebuke from Mr Justice Akenhead, who said he had lost "all sense of objectivity" in the matter. He said that Mr Mackay's behaviour to his architect and the contractors was "not simply coarse" but "combative, bullying and aggressive."
Perhaps unsurprisingly, given the middle name he boasted about in e-mails, Mackay has vowed to appeal the judgement.
- This article has been amended to reflect that not all of the more than 3,500 e-mail messages sent by Mr Mackay were abusive.