James Tickell and Carl Faulds of Portland were appointed as joint administrators of Wykeham Club Limited on 16th December 2014. We have recently issued our latest progress report on the conduct of the administration.
The company operated as a members’ social club in Andover, Hampshire. The company had suffered a significant drop in attendance and a corresponding decline in sales in the years leading up to the administration. A number of creditors indicated that they would take legal action in respect of the amounts due to them. With this increase in pressure on cashflow, the chairman and committee sought insolvency advice from us. A number of options were available to the club, each of which was considered by the committee. It was concluded that the protection afforded by administration would offer the best outcome for the creditors and would safeguard the creditors and members positions. A decision was made by the chairman and committee to cease trading and close in April 2014.
At the outset of the administration, there were two options available to the club, which were outlined in the joint administrators’ proposals. The first option was that the club be reopened from its existing premises, which would have required a sustainable business plan being submitted to us, which needed to include details of how working capital would be raised and how creditors would be paid. No business plan was received that would have allowed the club to continue to trade from its original premises and the anticipated costs of refurbishment effectively removed this as a viable option. As a result no proposal was submitted to us in this regard.
The second option was for the sale of the property and we worked with our agents during the administration to market the freehold premises. It was envisaged that it would take several months to find a suitable purchaser, which allowed time for interested parties to submit viable business plans to us in respect of the potential re-commencement of trading. It was initially expected that the property would have to be sold to a similar organisation due to the restrictions on re-use of the property. However, an application was made to the local authority to remove the restrictions and our agents were able to market the property to a wider variety of potential purchasers. Consequently, a number of offers were received by our agents and the property was subsequently sold in December 2015.
As a result of the sale we have been able to agree and pay unsecured creditor claims in full together with statutory interest. The principal remaining issue is the distribution of the surplus funds as detailed in our report.
Further information is provided in our progress that can be found here