Nacton: Deal close on sale of former Amberfield School

A DEAL could be agreed by the end of next week for the sale of the former Amberfield School site.

The independent school in Nacton closed last year with debts of about �1.8million, leaving pupils distraught and parents out of pocket.

The site has been on the market for months and administrators Begbies Traynor are now considering two conditional offers for the complex.

Neither option would see a new school run at the Amberfield property and details of the bids remain under wraps.

However, Neil Mather of Begbies Traynor said he was confident that a deal would be reached, which would see the bank debts settled first ahead of preferential creditors, with any money left going to unsecured creditors, such as parents who paid upfront for school fees.

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Mr Mather said: “We are close to agreeing a sale. We are down to two offers which we are evaluating at the moment. We are hoping to agree in the next week or two.

“The offers we have got are conditional on them getting planning permission to do work there, then a sale would be complete after that.”

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The school went into financial meltdown last October, owing �1.3million to Barclays bank, �200,000 to staff and �360,000 to other creditors including dozens of local businesses when it closed its doors. A bill for nearly �38,000 was outstanding to HM Revenue & Customs and an insurance bill of �25,000, council tax of �10,000 owed to Suffolk Coastal District Council and �10,401 in unpaid teachers’ pensions were also among the school’s debts.

Mr Mather added: “The money would be used first to pay the bank and any money left would be shared out among the creditors – first to the ex-employees, for preferential creditors, which aren’t particularly large [debts]. The rest will be shared out amongst the unsecured creditors – parents, teachers and everyone else.

“I’m hopeful that there should be money going back to unsecured creditors.”

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