i phoned keith to consult him and arrange to meet on monday to try and use the render farm. it was in this discussion that i discovered keith had had exactly the same problem. he had managed to find a code though on a forum that forced maya to batch render through the render view, in othere words bypassing the batch render altogether.
SUCCESS!!!! finaly after 12 + hours of trying to get this darn thing to work. the only draw back is time as it take s long er as maya is producing a fully rendered preview each frame. but it does work and i am currently rendering batches of frames on 2 computers.
the other problem is that after about 20 frames-45 mins- some of the textures turn bright red and u have to preview the rendered images make sure their all ok then restart maya and restart the batch render from a new start frame. as a result this means that i have to render about 50 frames a time and keep an eye on the render viewports to make sure the render hasnt corrupted.
slow but definately getting there :D.