My KCC Election Manifesto & Video

Friday, 8 September 2017

Dreamland's £2.5million Debt. Creditors Get Just 25p in £1!


According to a document which mysteriously came into my possession, creditors of the financially troubled Margate Dreamland operating company, Sands Heritage Limited (SHL), have voted to agree a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) which will repay their outstanding debts at a rate of 25p in the pound.


Within just a year of Dreamland opening amusement park operator SHL had ran up debts of over £8million and in May 2016 it was forced into administration. Almost 250 unsecured, non-preferential, creditors were owed almost £2.5 million

The documents leaked to me reveal that a

meeting of SHL’s creditors was held in London on 30 August 2017. At that meeting, the administrators proposed to share a sum of £600,000 between the 250 creditors - a repayment rate of 25 pence in every pound owed. The proposal was accepted by a majority of the creditors who voted. 


Having secured an agreement to settle its debts it is likely that SHL will shortly be released from administration and allowed to continue to manage Margate’s Dreamland Amusement Park. 


SHL was recently purchased by Cayman Islands registered hedge fund Arrowgrass Masterfund who now own 99% of the company shares. The original company directors have now resigned from the SHL board and been replaced. Arrowgrass have also invested a reported £25million in landscaping, extending and further developing the amusement park site and purchasing several properties adjacent to the Dreamland site. Sources close to Dreamland have told me that it is Arrowgrass which is funding the £600,000 offer. 

Whilst I welcome Arrowgrass’s investment in Dreamland and the surrounding area I am very disappointed by its 25 pence in the pound offer to its creditors, many of whom are small local businesses. Arrowgrass is an extremely successful hedge fund which generates very high returns for wealthy clients seeking tax-efficient offshore investments. Surely the right thing for Arrowgrass to have done would have been to have offered to pay at least 50p in every pound for those businesses who were shafted by SHL. 

8 comments:

  1. Ian - this piece is factually incorrect. Unsecured non-connected creditors will be getting 25p+ on their claims not the 10p you state above. Your calculation includes connected unsecured creditors in the total unsecured creditors total. These connected unsecured creditors will be receiving 0p from the CVA

    This 25p + the 23p many of these creditors would have received from the initial SHL CVA gets close to the 50p you suggest is fair.

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    1. yes you are right and thanks for pointing this out. I did my sums wrong and look rather silly. 25p in the pound is better but still paltry, especially it you are a small business.

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    2. So they got 23p initially from the SHL and now 25p via this agreement (agreed by the majority of creditors) so a total of 48p, so 2p less than you thought was fair.

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  2. Who are the SHL administrators and Arrowgrass/Sands directors? How much public funds/Lottery money was used in Dreamland? Iris must know?

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    1. at least £20million of public money was spend on the restoration and opening of Dreamland in 2015 including Heritage Lottery Fund, Coastal Communities and Sea Change grants plus money from Thanet Council and Kent County Council.

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  3. Strange TDC and Chris Wells made no mention of this creditors meeting for Dreamland - were TDC there? We've had no explanation either of the secret Brettgate developments in Wells' 60 points of success propaganda

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  4. Did the Sands directors lose out? Did designer Wayne Hemmingway lose out? Did the sellers of the old rides lose out? Did the former chief executive lose out?
    Or was it just the small businesses and the taxpayers?
    So many questions…

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  5. How has Iris got away with this? TDC councillors always seem to keep their mouths shut when there's a scandal. Any other council would have councillors calling for a review

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