Lewes Forum thread

Go on, tell 'em what you think

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On 13 Oct 2009 at 6:51pm The Minxorcist wrote:
I'm not one to gossip or spread rumours, and I'm not one for laughing at other peoples' misfortunes either, but oh deary me................................
On 13 Oct 2009 at 9:56pm PhoenixWatcher wrote:
Has it really? It would be terrible to gloat if it's true.
On 13 Oct 2009 at 10:20pm Angel Delight wrote:
I don't know about Angel (the land will be sold to someone even worse) but I did hear Philcox Gray, the building arm of the Rees Elliott empire, have gone into liquidation. How long until Rees Elliott follow?
On 13 Oct 2009 at 10:52pm The Minxorcist wrote:
Well maybe the new owner will be driven by intelligence, and not by greed. The whole of Phoenix needs pulling down, and re-developed with clean, modern units that would encourage local industries. Only a few years ago, 90% of those units were full - it could happen again. Lewes needs that - more than it needs a crazy up-market housing project.
On 14 Oct 2009 at 8:17am Dave wrote:
What exactly has happened to Angel Property ? Noone I've spoken to has heard anything.
On 14 Oct 2009 at 9:31am sashimi wrote:
This rumour originates, allegedly, from one of the tenants. It started up once before when a tenant reported he was now paying rent to the Allied Irish Bank. This is a fairly normal 'factoring' transaction where the 'debt' due to the Company is sold on to a factor at a discount in return for cash up front. Factoring is, however, often an indication of financial distress - and Charles Style has admitted Angel like many developers is distressed. I checked this out last time with Angel Property and they confirmed robustly that they weren't bust. Maybe, this rumour has the same origin - someone jumping to a conclusion that isn't quite correct.
On 14 Oct 2009 at 11:41am Big Bob wrote:
He's bust, it's official!
On 14 Oct 2009 at 12:05pm PhoenixWatcher wrote:
I'd like to read it officially before I open the Babycham.
On 14 Oct 2009 at 12:26pm Big Bob wrote:
Ask the clerk at the Town Council, they can confirm
On 14 Oct 2009 at 1:14pm Mystic Mog wrote:
On 14 Oct 2009 at 5:12pm Annette Curtin-Twitcher wrote:
Oh goody! Mind you, being in administration doesn't necessarily mean that it's all over, does it?
I think we should have a party if the company goes bust. Dance on his financial grave.....
On 14 Oct 2009 at 5:20pm Mystic Mog wrote:
ACT be careful for what you wish for. Whoever takes over the site could far worse for Lewes...or better. However the problem all along has been off-setting the cost building flood defences there against developing the site and at least breaking even. Without flood defences, no re-devolpment.
On 14 Oct 2009 at 5:30pm Sherlock wrote:
If the administrators have to sell off what Angel owns on the Phoenix site they're not going to raise much at a time like this. Could be a chance for Lewes Community Land Trust to get in and do a decent redevelopment there.
On 14 Oct 2009 at 5:35pm Down and Out wrote:
Thing is, he never actually owned that much of the land did he? It was always based on getting the remainder off LDC, I thought, after planning was agreed.
It'll be a while before anyone tries again. I did like the roundabout at the end of Phoenix Causeway, tho.
On 14 Oct 2009 at 6:00pm Sherlock wrote:
I think Style owns quite a bit according to the map LDC put out. But he doesn't own the bit where he was going to put the famous cinema that impressed so many of the town's farteratti.
On 14 Oct 2009 at 7:33pm Annette Curtin-Twitcher wrote:
With a bit of luck, whoever gets the site afterwards won't get planning permission before the national park is created, then they'll have a hell of a job getting permission.
On 15 Oct 2009 at 9:58am brixtonbelle wrote:
as a lewes newbie - can anyone enlighten me as to why there is so much anti-Angel property feeling? I have no view one way or the other as I don't know what was proposed. Looking at their website it looks like thy were trying to redevelop every riverside site they could get their hands on and probably over extended themselves...
also what's the connection with philcox - has philcox gone under with them ? i heard they had financial difficulties because of the crunch ?
On 15 Oct 2009 at 10:50am sashimi wrote:
Brixtonbelle, there's no connection between the two. It's just a coincidence that Martin Elliott's building company seems to have got into trouble at the same time as Charles Styles' Angel Property group. As far as we know there was no financial link between the two. Angel's plan for the £200m 'Phoenix Quarter' divided the Town. It was originally for 800 plus homes 6000sq m offices and 7000sq m shops. One of the buildings was to be 10 storeys. Over development, out of proportion for the Town, would lead to the further diminution of the High Street and we shouldn't be putting more homes on the floodplain said those against. Just what we need: clean up a run down area, more homes, more business and flood defences for the Pells said those for.
On 15 Oct 2009 at 1:59pm Sherlock wrote:
Fine precis sashimi. There was also a lot of concern about Angel itself - they boasted about a development they'd worked on in London as an example of their great work but, it transpired, the development had been riddled with planning irregularities, Angel were breaking promises, many people living there were unhappy about the way things turned out.
On 15 Oct 2009 at 3:14pm No Pot Pourri wrote:
A huge amount of council tax payers money has been wasted on this failed scheme. I would be interested in knowing how much it has cost us.
Had LDC instead drawn up a proper development brief for the site I am sure they would have made considerable savings and a viable redevelopment could happen.
On 15 Oct 2009 at 3:59pm sashimi wrote:
Something like £55k was spent by public bodies in officer time and out of pocket expenses in the monthly meetings on North Street. Masses more in informal consultations over 3 years.
On 15 Oct 2009 at 4:29pm Mystic Mog wrote:
NPP, to be fair to LDC, they were trying to develop a brief via consulation. Post-flood brought far different circumstances and legislation that made any previous plans redundant. One may comment upon how they did the consulation, but if there was no consulation then there would be complaints. If Angel had not bought the land, it would be interesting to speculate if we would have a post-flood development plan with building in progress.
I stress that without flood defences the land cannot be re-developed. However flood defences are not cheap and the government will not pay for them. Hence the need of 3rd party funds.
On 15 Oct 2009 at 4:42pm Down and Out wrote:
I get annoyed by this 'waste of public money' argument. This scheme hasn't 'cost council tax payers' anything. LDC have a set planning budget and they've used it, so there is no additional cost to the public.
It's worth remembering that 95% of Lewes, which most people now seem to believe is beautiful, was built by speculative profit-hungry developers. Everyone gets their knickers in a twist when a developer attempts to make a buck, but at the same time I don't see armies of Lewesians voting communist at general elections, so that the State takes over all development. Developers need to make proposals and the public needs to debate them. When public bodies attempt to impose unprofitable scenarios on private developers you end up with hopeless fiascos like the King Alfred redevelopment in Brighton.
On 15 Oct 2009 at 5:15pm Sherlock wrote:
Down and Out wrote: 'I get annoyed by this 'waste of public money' argument. This scheme hasn't 'cost council tax payers' anything. LDC have a set planning budget and they've used it, so there is no additional cost to the public.'
What annoyed me was that what began as a consultative process to see what kind of development people wanted in the North Street area (the 'North Street Vision'), ostensibly unrelated to whatever Style was proposing, seemed to quickly become a mechanism for helping Style formulate his planning application at our expense.
On 15 Oct 2009 at 5:34pm Down and Out wrote:
Sherlock: well, fair comment, but I suppose it comes down to an issue of trust doesn't it? It was right that the initial consultation took place, but if the developer acted in such a way that the general perception was either that the consultation process wasn't worth a bean, or that it didn't appear that the developer was acting purposefully on the consultation, that's when the trust goes up in smoke. It's clear that an awful lot of people didn't have a lot of faith in Angel.
On 15 Oct 2009 at 6:01pm Sherlock wrote:
You're right Down and Out. Another problem is that people don't have much confidence in the ability of the LDC planing department (you've probably read on here in the past of some of their terrible errors) and it's difficult to know who was running rings round whom over the North Street Vision. Were LDC trying to delay Angel's application or were Angel taking LDC for a ride?
On 15 Oct 2009 at 6:36pm Mystic Mog wrote:
Jam factory
On 15 Oct 2009 at 8:14pm PhoenixWatcher wrote:
There's no end to it, is there? Though I imagine a lot of the dosh is salted away in the missus's bank account.
On 15 Oct 2009 at 9:03pm The Minxorcist wrote:
He should have renovated those units and had them up & running instead of letting them rot. No sympathy from me.
On 15 Oct 2009 at 9:06pm No Pot Pourri wrote:
I understand that Charles Style was personal guarantor for many of the loans, so I guess he will not get off scot free.
On 16 Oct 2009 at 9:35am Reality Check wrote:
Whilst your enthusiasms for the demise of a Limited Company are noted, you should all keep a check on your leasehold interests. Anyone googling Angel will come across this and at the end of the day all you are doing is devaluing your own properties.
Get real and a life - sponsor a child if you need to - and safe guard what is actually important
On 16 Oct 2009 at 11:00am Brixtonbelle wrote:
Yes, very worthy and very pompous, Reality Check - but so is free speech and making sure development companies don't ruin local communities for their own greedy ends.
On 16 Oct 2009 at 12:14pm Sherlock wrote:
Reality Check wrote: 'Anyone googling Angel will come across this and at the end of the day all you are doing is devaluing your own properties.'
Can you explain what you mean Mr Style/friend of Mr Style? Are you talking about Angel's own tenants? If not, what?
On 16 Oct 2009 at 1:11pm Reality Check wrote:
Sherlock - no s**t!
Brixtonbelle. Angel's short comings at the Jam Factory have actually created a community rather that ruining one, to the extent that they are even sharing their communal garden with the local authority block next door.
Where the hell is Lewes anyway?
On 16 Oct 2009 at 1:24pm Mystic Mog wrote:
Since you were googling jam factory / angel and came across this forum, I suggest that you do the same and google Lewes and in particular the developments that Angel were proposing here.
Clue: the Lewes we are taliking about is not the one in Delaware
On 16 Oct 2009 at 1:32pm Reality Check wrote:
Thanks Mog - am liking your style
Fancy meeting for a coffee? You sound like my type of Mog
On 16 Oct 2009 at 1:57pm Mystic Mog wrote:
Ok then RC where and when?
On 16 Oct 2009 at 2:01pm Sherlock wrote:
Reality Check: No you've sorted that out will you explain what you mean by 'devaluing your own properties'?
On 16 Oct 2009 at 5:18pm Geoff wrote:
Just to remind everyone, Charles Style accidentally admitted ages ago that he intended to sell the site anyway, once he got permission, so his being around or not around will make little difference, other than that our Council may get to deal with a company that doesn't waste their time, and our money.
On 16 Oct 2009 at 6:01pm No Pot Pourri wrote:
Often a bankruptcy can mean great opportunity. If the site were sufficiently cheap to buy, it may be that someone could create a scheme on a smaller scale that would benefit Lewes and bring a decent return for the new developer.

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