Owner of Preston's 1842 bar insists venue is not closing

1842 bar at the Corn Exchange building on Lune Street
1842 bar at the Corn Exchange building on Lune Street

The owner of one of Preston’s most popular bars has insisted the venue is not closing - despite a legal wrangle.

A firm linked to 1842 has been in dispute with Mick Duerden Electrical Contractors Ltd over payment for work carried out during refurbishment at the Lune Street venue.

The electricians allege 1842’s parent company Bravado Group Ltd owes around £37,000 in unpaid debts after failing to pay two invoices.

Company secretary Hayley Duerden said the non-payment and court proceedings had “nearly destroyed” the Preston-based family firm.

They sought a legal petition at Preston County Court for Bravado to be given a wind up order - a court order that forces an insolvent company into compulsory liquidation.

Bravado Group Ltd had already been put into voluntary liquidation - which means neither the court nor the official receiver plays a role in the liquidation. The running of 1842 is by Acorn Leisure Ltd, which changed its name from Bravado Leisure Limited on September 15 at the request of the liquidator of Bravado Group Ltd.

But the voluntary liquidation was reversed when Deputy District Judge Reynolds agreed to impose a compulsory order last month, in view of the concerns regarding the assets and business transactions of Bravado Group Ltd. He said it was the kind of case that needs a liquidator who is “seen to be independent.”

The matter is now expected to be investigated by official receivers with Duerden facing a wait to see if they will be paid for their work. Ms Duerden added: “This has almost wiped us out, we’ve been trading for almost 40 years. It has impacted on everyone.”

Brandon Seddon, owner of the bar - which is based at the former Corn Exchange - said it continued to trade as the court order does not affect Acorn. He added he had put the first company into liquidation on his solicitor’s advice.