Cheers for the response Johnan. Ironically, I used to start my old SLK in second almost all the time as despite being a petrol was very torquey to the point where first was such short throw it was practically redundant. I though as you that the diesel MCSD would be better at this and I've even had it start off in second several times just to experiment with no issues whatsoever. It does however seem to be more to do with how the ECU is set up.After reading such a well constructed post I am sorry I can't be of more help, other than to say as I think you know there have been various posts about stalling issues going back quite a few months, but I am not sure if they applied to diesels.
A diesel should be harder to stall due to its greater low speed torque, but it all depends on how the ECU is set up.
The mini problem database ought to have enough info on stalling issues by now to show yours is not behaving normally, and have a solution, as long as the dealer is willing to accept your "complaint".
Maybe a few more revs on take off might help temporarily!
I've intentionally been pressing much hard on the accelerator pedal than I'm used to; I don't think it's the moving off that's the issue, it's the transfer of fuel thereafter... almost it's that it expects you to accelerate more/harder that the circumstance allows.
Will be ringing the garage in the morn. Two Mini's both with issue straight off the bat. Unlucky, but not insurmountable.