Brunel trio in nightclub bid
5:00am Friday 14th March 2014 in By Dominic Gilbert
A GROUP of creditors have joined in an attempt to have the former Brunel Rooms directors struck off the register after it emerged the trio are putting in bids to run nightclubs in Essex.
Emails sent between the former directors and seen by the Adver show that as early as January 31, interest was being shown in a number of venues, including a £59,500 cocktail bar in North Hertfordshire and a £47,000 nightclub in Croydon.
Meetings were arranged in late February for viewings of two spots in particular, the Forty One Bar and Lounge in Chelmsford and the Chic Champagne and Cocktail Bar in Hitchin.
Debts of more than £150,000 were left outstanding to creditors after the Brunel Rooms was wound up last month, along with a substantial debt to HMRC and Wiltshire Police.
In an email to former directors Helene Simpkins, Paula Harris and Jason Ranford, accountant Philip Nickson said: “It is unlikely, from the facts supplied, you will become personally liable for the HMRC liabilities. Forming a new company and resurrecting the business is quite normal, however, I would insist the new business does not repeat the mistakes of the last business.”
Helene Simpkins denied any interest in a new nightclub.
“We have no plans for that at all. We have friends over there and we visit them often but that is about it.”
The creditors want to prevent a repeat of the problems made during the short-lived reincarnation of the Brunel Rooms.
One, who wished to remain anonymous, said: “We feel quite cheated to be honest. It is pretty clear these individuals have a bit of money.
“The feeling between all of us is these are relatively small sums of money to them but they are willing to go off and do it again as if it does not matter. We have got about 10 to 15 people at the moment, and we have set up a secure Facebook group to bring us all together.
“What we are going for is the process of writing to the Institute of Directors in London to get them struck off the register so they can never be a director again.
“We have got some legal advice and we know that as a group of people we stand a much better chance than as an individual. We will also be looking at splitting the costings between us all.
“All of us operate businesses and deal with the public on a daily basis. We are doing this because more people stand to lose out.
“There are people in Swindon who have been put out of pocket, and who is to say they are not just going to go elsewhere and do the same thing?”
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