HuskyPup - 3:35 pm on Jan 25, 2011 (gmt 0)
Aha...I appear to have some success!
I consulted with an htaccess expert last week and he slightly modified my hotlink protection so I'm trying it out on a few sites.
The first success was when my main B&M site's images started to appear in the Google preview pane a couple of days ago.
The second success was a full spidering of my trade directory site yesterday by Google with an immediate increase in the quantity of images in the image results.
Fingers crossed they're on their way back in however the big lesson seems to be that CPanel's hotlink protection is just TOO severe and locked everyone out!