Monday, 8 October 2012
City takes control of Storey, Tourist Information moves back
Lancaster City Council has taken control of the management of the Storey Institute, fulfilling its commitment to reinvigorating this important building.
Today (Monday 8th October) the city council forfeited the lease of the Storey Creative Industries Centre Ltd (SCIC Ltd), and took possession of the Storey Institute as a result of the company going into liquidation.
Because of the necessity to undertake certain operational investigations before pursuing legal procedures to gain possession, today was the earliest date that officers could implement the resolution made by Full Council in September.
Former tenants of SCIC Ltd have been invited to sign licences to permit them to continue operating their businesses from the rooms they occupy in the building until formal leases are granted to them by the council.
They will play an important part in securing the future of the Storey Institute and the city council will be working with them closely to secure its true potential.
Lancaster Visitor Information Centre, which vacated the building when the financial difficulties of SCIC Ltd came to light in July, has already moved back in.
Mark Cullinan, Lancaster City Council’s chief executive, said: “Since the Full Council took its decision to keep the Storey Institute open as a centre for the creative industries, we have been working towards regaining possession as soon as possible.
“Issues regarding company liquidation are never easy and that it is why it has taken until now to reach this position and for the head lease to be returned. In the interim the tenants themselves have been running the building and we are grateful to them for their continued support.
“The next stage is for the city council to continue to work with the tenants to make the building sustainable.”
The terms of the lease between the city council and SCIC Ltd specified that the lease could be forfeited in several ways, one of which was if the tenant (being a company) went into liquidation.
The city council chose the process known as ‘forfeiture by peaceable re-entry’ to secure the return of the building. This required the assistance of a certified bailiff to ensure that this procedure was conducted in accordance with the law.
Posted by John Freeman at 18:59