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Nottingham Post
Nottingham Post
Jamie Barlow

Nottingham Castle Trust liquidators share message over refunds after collapse

Liquidators have now been formally appointed following the demise of the Nottingham Castle Trust which was responsible for the running of Nottingham Castle. Officials from the Trust announced last week they were in the process of appointing liquidators - the collapse almost 18 months after the Castle reopened following a much-heralded £33m revamp which took three years to complete.

Tim Bateson and Chris Pole, from Interpath Advisory, were formally appointed as joint liquidators to the Trust on Tuesday, November 29. The Trust, an independent and not-for-profit charitable trust, managed and operated Nottingham Castle on behalf of Nottingham City Council, the authority now back in control of the landmark site.

The majority of the staff of the Trust were made redundant in advance of the appointment of the liquidators, and all remaining staff were made redundant with effect from Wednesday (November 30). The liquidators have also confirmed no refunds will be issued to any customers who bought advance tickets and annual passes for the attraction - or for anyone who paid for booked events.

But individuals in this position should notify the liquidators of any amounts that they are owed by writing to Tim Bateson, director at Interpath Advisory and joint liquidator, said: “Dating back to the time of William the Conqueror, Nottingham Castle has been at the heart of the city for centuries, bearing witness to civil wars, royal coups, fires and floods.

"As a modern-day museum, it has helped to preserve the cultural heritage of Nottingham, hosting tours, exhibitions and supporting local schools and community projects. Immediately following our appointment over the Trust, we disclaimed the various leases and operating agreements back to Nottingham City Council.

"Whilst the Castle is now back under the control of the Council, we will be working proactively with them over the coming weeks to ensure that there is a smooth handover to give them the best possible chance of being able to reopen the Castle at the appropriate time.

"We will also be providing support and assistance to the employees to enable them to claim any outstanding statutory entitlements which they are due, as well as working to realise the remaining assets.”

The Castle, comprised of caves, a museum and exhibition galleries, welcomed more than 100,000 visitors through its doors in the period since summer 2021. While the Trust was in discussions with stakeholders to secure additional funding, these discussions were ultimately unsuccessful.

After considering their options, the Trustees took the decision to seek the appointment of the joint liquidators. The Castle closed its gates to the public on November 20.

As a separate legal entity which solely operated in the grounds of the Castle, the directors of Nottingham Castle Services Limited concluded that following the closure of the Castle to visitors, there was no viable alternative to liquidation and made the decision to take the necessary steps to appoint joint liquidators.

The team behind the revamp had the vision for the castle to become a “world-class” heritage site that rivalled historic locations such as York and Warwick. But its reopening was marred by difficulties including board resignations and significantly-missed visitor number targets.

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