It's all gone a bit Pete Tong...club bosses walk away as debts rise

n  Brunel Rooms directors Jason Ranford, Helene Simpkins and Paula Harris before the re-opening of the club last year. The trio have decided to walk away from the club after claiming they have lost their investmen

n Brunel Rooms directors Jason Ranford, Helene Simpkins and Paula Harris before the re-opening of the club last year. The trio have decided to walk away from the club after claiming they have lost their investmen

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THE Brunel Rooms is set to be closed indefinitely after the nightclub’s directors failed to negotiate a new lease.

The town centre club was forced to close its doors on Tuesday, January 21, after leaseholders FI Real Estate Management moved in to take control of the building.

The club had failed to pay rent to the leaseholders of the building, and were left unable to pay staff their full wages for the month.

The management said it would pay them but cheques sent out to staff subsequently bounced.

A grand reopening had been scheduled for February 15 with a special Valentine’s night from Desires, but the event has now been cancelled.

Tickets were being sold for the relaunch the day after the locks were changed on the buildin.

The club’s directors insisted a new lease had been agreed, subject to paperwork being finalised.

James Raspin, of FI Real Estate Management, said: “I can confirm that, due to non-payment of rent, the lease of The Brunel Rooms nightclub has been forfeited and we have no plans to issue a further lease to the management of The Brunel Rooms.”

The sound system of the club was removed shortly after it was closed after the club broke the terms of the contract.

The owner of the system, who did not wish to be named, said: “We just had to remove it because they were not paying their bills.

“They broke their contract so we removed the equipment.”

In a statement released yesterday, former directors Helene Simpkins, Paula Harris and Jason Ranford said: “Having lost everything that was invested and more, and after an extensive decision-making process, it is with mixed feelings that we have decided not to re-open the club.

“There has been much negative press coverage and because of this, and among other reasons, we do not feel it is a financially viable business.

“The Brunel Centre now have another offer on the table from a new investor and therefore we would like to take this opportunity to wish the new owners the very best of luck for the future.”

The licence of the club had been due to go to review at the licensing committee on either February 18 or 19 after Wiltshire Police raised concerns about a rise in public disorder in the area.

The review will still be heard while the licence is active, despite the fact the club no longer belongs to the licensee.

A spokesman for Swindon Council said: “The hearing will still go ahead unless they surrender their licence or go into liquidation.”

At the time of going to print, the directors of the Brunel Rooms still hold a licence.

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