Well, after another few weeks, I finally have my car and most of my parts back, although I did have to retrieve them all myself. The car was dumped on an industrial estate!! The car is now worse than when I left it there. Dent in the boot lid. side skirt ripped off, rear wiper burnt out, engine cover panels missing, oil level sensor damaged, etc, etc. I'm hoping to sue the little, er, monkey but that will take some time!
Now, the clutch has been replaced and seems to work, however, 2 things are wrong with it and may be related. First, the clutch "drags" when the engine is runnning and so is difficult to get into gear. Also (and more worryingly), the clutch/gearbox emits a screeching noise. Initially, I thought it was the aux belt as it's that sort of noise however, on closer inspection, it appears to be clutch. Also, when idling, if you press the clutch the noise starts and builds up in volume (like a rubbing wheel building up speed). If you put it in gear with the clutch still depressed, the noise goes. It only happens, stationary, with the pedal depressed. Moving, it happens from 2k rpm to 3k ish and is much louder. Any ideas? It could be a gearbox bearing as the gearbox has been swapped. From the way the noise comes and goes, it almost seems like the friction plate is dragging on the flywheel, making a noise but I've never heard a noise from a friction plate before! I'd like to identify the noise so I can add this to the legal persuit!