Future brides and grooms, suppliers and the organisers of Lincoln’s Steampunk Festival have been left devastated by the site closure of Kelham Hall in Newark, which has gone into liquidation.
Kelham Hall was owned by local businessman Jonathan Pass, who messaged suppliers on Friday night to announce the news, while the venue’s website and social media pages became unavailable. It also appears that there are no staff on site to pick up calls.
A notice was posted outside the hall saying: “As of Wednesday, June 23, Kelham Hall Ltd has ceased trading, and the mortgagee has taken possession of the site. The site is now closed and all reservations are now unfortunately cancelled. Any person with a booking will be contacted in due course by a Kelham Hall Ltd nominated person.”
Anthony William Jude Cundall and Stewart James Davies, of privately owned commercial finance provider A Shade Greener Finance Ltd, were both appointed as “a person with significant control” on June 23.
A document on Companies House confirming the end of Jonathan Pass’ control was also dated June 23. Mr Pass also owns Charlotte House Hotel in Lincoln, which appears unaffected.
On the documents of each of Anthony and Stewart’s appointments, it states: “This person holds, directly or indirectly, more than 25% but not more than 50% of the shares in the company.”
Kelham Hall was put up for sale £10 million in 2020.
Meanwhile, the annual Steampunk festival in Lincoln, which welcomes more than 100,000 people to the city each August, was moved to Newark after it was decided that the event could not go ahead in its usual location due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Newark and Sherwood District Council Leader David Lloyd said: “I am really saddened to hear about the news from Kelham Hall. At the moment we are yet to have any in-depth conversations with the owners about what the future holds, but as soon as we know the next steps we’ll be letting any of our partners that are affected by the liquidation know what they need to do next.”
John Naylor, one of the organisers of the event, told The Lincolnite: “We haven’t really had time to investigate options and make decisions as the Ministry of Steampunk are volunteers, although we have already been approached by lots of people and organisations wanting to help.”
John previously posted on the ‘Welcome to the Asylum’ Facebook group on Friday saying: “We have been informed that Kelham Hall is in financial difficulties.
“We are suspending tickets until we can discuss options with both the administrators and the local authorities.
“Both are considering options at the moment and we hope to meet with them and of course see where we are going with the event.
“We cannot at this time give any more information nor answer questions but must ask you to be patient and await information. At this point we are as gob smacked as everyone else.”