It's the end of the line for the investment by RICH members in Railtrack.

"We've lost faith," says Jim Porteous, chairman of Ridings Investment Club Holdings. "We've decided to sell the lot.

"We feel that they are up against the wall and there is a large contingent firing at them."

But these executives and former executives of Nestle, York, who every month pool their money and collective financial wisdom to play the markets, are alighting while they are very much ahead.

They bought at £6.45 and decided to sell at a little more than £10.

Jim, mindful of the truism that investments can go up as well as down, says: "We may be back some day as fundamentally they are OK but the maxim is 'don't buck the trend' and at the moment its trend is down."

Nor are the members too bullish about the extra BT shares which dropped from £7.37 to £7, although average price for their increased holding now stands at £5.02 which still puts them on the right side of the investment.

But a month is a long time on the market and at their latest meeting members decided to err on the side of caution, including BT on its serious stop loss list. Should the BT shares drop to £6 they will sell. Mind you, should they rise to £9 that will trigger a sale too!

Another stop loss was assigned to the Royal Bank of Scotland. Should its shares drop to £14 it will trigger a sale - if only to protect RICH members profits, considering they bought in at £8.43.

Other profit preservation contingencies include selling a third of their holdings in Morrison's, should the supermarket chain drop to £1.70 (they bought at £1.11); half the Great Universal Stores shares would be sold if they dip to £4.60 (bought at £3.54) and half their Tesco shares would be sold if triggered at £2.50 (bought at £2.15).

Jim says: "We aren't expecting all these holdings to drop to their stop loss levels but we are, as the Chancellor says, being prudent and laying down plans if the market falls."

But if there was one piece of clear good news it was the RICH members' decision last month to invest in Matalan - largely based on their personal observation of booming sales they could see at the clothing store's Clifton Moor branch.

Where they bought in at £6.39, Matalan was now £7.74 and gaining, with a continuing growth in customer volume. Such is the power of local observation.