YES!! London Mardi Gras may go under

Shareholders in London Mardi Gras may decide to close the company which runs the capital’s annual Pride party and parade.

The decision will be made at a crunch meeting on 23 October, as the Pink Paper hits the streets.

Bosses have been told by the Royal Parks that they will not be able to hold the event at Hyde Park again next year after they failed to pay the quarter-million pound fee for renting the land this July.

And now shareholders have been told in a set of notes circulated by bosses before Thursday’s annual general meeting that “it is still unclear whether or not the company is legally solvent”.

The notes, which were leaked to the Pink Paper, give shareholders four options.

They can “inject new share capital”, but many have already accepted they have lost tens of thousands of pounds.

Alternatively they can put the company into liquidation themselves or get creditors to do it for them.

Lastly they could choose to “try to continue with the existing company” and hold the festival “in a different location”.

However, some shareholders have already accepted that the event will never make a profit unless it is at Hyde Park and the notes tell them that the Royal Parks will not let them return there. The firm still owes the venue £210,000.

The company has been running Pride since 1999 but has only made a profit once, in 2001, and it lost almost half a million pounds in 2002.

Jason Pollock, festival director, said he didn’t know what would happen at the meeting.

“My personal feeling is that it won’t close,” he added. “But it is a bit of a knock that [Hyde Park] won’t let us go there.

“Of course I want it to continue but I am just one of 29 shareholders.”

(Article in the now dead

… and a well-paid employee of the company too, presumably.

It's incredible isn't it? The people who failed to save the Pride Trust when it owed a few tens of thousands of pounds on the grounds it was 'unprofessional' have managed to lose hundreds and hundreds of thousands of pounds. They've lost more than PT did in four out of their five years: 1999, 2000, 2002 and 2003.

Of course, some of this is because they've paid themselves, either directly or indirectly eg through advertising, a pile of money, but you still wouldn't trust this bunch of 'professionals' to run a whelk stall, never mind a festival.

Now to see what happens.

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