CROYDON IN CRISIS: Town Hall correspondent, KEN LEE, on the latest council bail-out for Brick by Brick over the bungled and unfinished refurbishment of the borough’s major arts centre
Croydon’s cash-strapped council is to step in and pick up another £69.2million-worth of costs associated with the bungled and unfinished refurbishment of the Fairfield Halls, according to a report going to next Monday’s Town Hall cabinet meeting.
And yet more consultants are having to be hired by the council to check on the work of Brick by Brick and its contractors, to decide quite how bad a job they managed to make of the prestigious south London arts venue and “to make the centre operational”.
By transferring the multi-million-pound cost over-runs from the Brick by Brick balance sheet, council officials hope to staunch their losses and make the house-builder a more attractive proposition to a potential buyer.
The council has loaned loss-making Brick by Brick £200million since it formed the company in 2015, and not a penny has ever been repaid – a significant factor in the council going bust last year. Continue reading