Revenue’s most famous inspector retires.

Hector, the Inland Revenue’s bowler hat wearing cartoon mascot, is to end his time as the nation’s tax collector today when he retires from service, writes Gavin Hinks.

He leaves his job at the Revenue after spending six years persuading people to submit their self-assessment forms on time. His retirement will be marked by a party on a Thames riverboat.

Peter Wyman, a tax partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers, paid tribute to the cuddly character who appeared in countless TV ad campaigns, on billboards and in newspapers.

‘Hector has done a sterling job in drawing attention to self-assessment deadlines. His job is still not done but probably the time is right for an honourable retirement,’ he said.

Frank Haskew of the ICAEW’s tax faculty, said: ‘Hector looks old enough to be retired and should be putting his feet up for a well-earned rest.’

Hector pandered to the traditional view of taxmen as staid, middle-aged and wearing a pinstripe suit topped with a bowler and his departure will be seen as the first major act by Ian Schoolar, the Revenue’s new marketing director, who is clearly keen to update the department’s image.

– Hector’s many guises including Spiderman, /Tax/1100636

– Taxman admits mistakes exist in one in 20 statements of account, page 2.

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