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Prospect Auction Rooms owes almost £40,000
A HAMPSHIRE auction house has collapsed owing £39,700 to 300 people, the Daily Echo can reveal.
The full extent of Prospect Auction Rooms’ liabilities is outlined in legal documents seen by this newspaper.
The Daily Echo has reported how hundreds of people were left owed money, including from cherished heirlooms.
Scores of people attended the business to try to get their money or retrieve unsold goods.
Anger has mounted after Charles Evans, who claims to only have been manager of Prospect, won planning permission to convert The Furniture Warehouse, in Easton Lane, Winchester, into another auction house.
Mr Evans says he was never owned Prospect although his application to the city council shows he viewed it as his business.
The Official Receiver report into Ms Sharp said: “She traded as an auctioneer between November 2009 and October 2012 with another.
She left the business full-time in September 2010 due to childcare issues and the auction room was run by her business partner and an employee.
“As a consequence of Sharp’s absence, management of the business became far less structured and its affairs became untidy.
“The cause of insolvency can be attributed to poor business management, a loss of customers and finally an inability to trade when Sharp reached her overdraft limit.
“The majority of her debt is to unpaid customers which accrued between June and October 2012.”
In a statement of affairs lodged at the county court, Ms Sharp said difficulties started in March 2012: “Stock was not coming into the salesroom, our outgoings therefore overtook our incomings.
Buyers also stopped coming.
Sales were not covering costs.”
The Daily Echo has inspected documents at Winchester County Court which show total debts of £80,130 comprising £31,350 to banks; £3,021 to local authorities; trade and expense £5,500; public utilities £519, and miscellaneous debts of £39,739, mainly to customers.
The report by the Official Receiver said Sharp, 34, of Station Road, Alresford, has no assets, apart from a Land Rover Freelander valued at £500.
There is no chance of creditors getting any money back. No creditors’ meeting will be held, the report said.
Ms Sharp was unavailable for comment.
A spokesman for the Official Receiver said it was open to any information about assets.