Friends of Hastings Pier appear to have raised the white flag of surrender this afternoon in its battle to buy the town’s pier directly from its administrators.
But the friends are not going down without one last attempt to wrestle control of Hastings Pier away from the man who already owns Eastbourne Pier. In a complex twist to the story FoHP seem to have conceded they cannot buy the pier directly from the administrators so instead they have made an offer to Sheikh Abid Gulzar who, Hastings In Focus understands became the owner of the pier earlier today.
On the Friends of Hastings Pier Facebook page this afternoon it said: “The Friends of Hastings Pier have heard from numerous sources that Hastings Pier is in the final stages of being sold to Abid Gulzar for a figure around £50,000.
“We are shocked and disappointed that the Heritage Lottery Fund and administrators at Smith and Williamson have clearly not properly reviewed our joint proposal with a reputable commercial operator – they have chosen a quick sale instead of working up until their own deadline of November 2018.
“If the rumours are true, we are ready to make an offer to Mr Gulzar to purchase the pier from him for £15,000 more than whatever the true figure of his final bid is. Accepting this would truly be a heroic move on his part, not to mention an excellent day’s business.”
FoHP is clearly aggrieved that it has been overlooked and wants answers from administrators Smith and Williamson and the Heritage Lottery Fund and says it wants explanations on why…
- A commercial administration process was used for a community/civic asset
- Selecting Mr Gulzar’s proposal rather than the joint community-commercial proposal of The Friends of Hastings Pier.
- Choosing to sell the Pier now, instead of using the full duration of the ‘administration period’ up to November 2018.
However there has still be no confirmation from the administrators that any deal of any kind has been done with Sheikh Abid Gulzar or anyone else.