Thirty-two years ago I bounced enthusiastically into the Money Mail office for the first time.
Thus began a journey which has encompassed campaigns, scandals, stock market crashes, bank failures and financial crises.
From day one I learned that your letters are at the heart of everything we do. Your support lends strength to our campaigns, your information reveals facts firms try to hide and your requests for help tell us where customer service and consumer protection are failing.
Hi ho savers: Letters editor Tony Hazell is riding off into the sunset after 32 years helping readers with their money problems
I learned my trade at the knee of Margaret Stone — the woman who invented modern personal finance journalism – before taking over from her as Money Mail editor in 1999.
When I stepped down in 2011, I took up the cudgels as consumer champion to fight your corner against companies that refused to listen.
In the decade I’ve been doing this, I have won back millions of pounds for readers who have been treated appallingly by financial firms.
Many cases, particularly where fraud, pensions and life insurance policies were concerned, involved life-changing sums of money.
But while it is always satisfying to secure a big win, the most heart-wrenching and ultimately rewarding letters I’ve dealt with have been from the bereaved, very elderly and those acting as an attorney for loved ones.
The way some companies treat vulnerable customers never ceases to horrify me and it has…