Promoters reassure music fans Bedford Park Concerts still on despite former organiser going bankrupt

Judge Jules and the crowd at Cafe Mambo at Bedford Park Concerts 2019. Credit Peter Hayes
Judge Jules and the crowd at Cafe Mambo at Bedford Park Concerts 2019. Image: Peter Hayes

The new promoters of Bedford Park Concerts have said this summer’s concerts are still going ahead, despite news emerging the former organiser of the annual music event has gone bankrupt.

Cuffe & Taylor took over promoting Bedford Park Concerts in 2022 and have been established for more than 14 years

They are part of Live Nation and “present breath-taking tours, festivals and shows” across the UK in football stadiums, arenas, theatres and major historical sites.

A spokesperson for new promoters Cuffe & Taylor told the Bedford Independent, “Cuffe & Taylor are delighted to be using Bedford Park as the venue for a new concert series they are debuting in 2023.

“… we are delighted to now be working in the venue in a new agreement with Bedford Borough Council and look forward to the economic benefits the series will bring.

“All Proms ticket holders holding a ticket previously purchased for ‘Last Night of the Proms’ at the Park will have already been written to, advising them of the new dates.

“Those tickets will be honoured for the newly announced ‘West End Proms’ with their original tickets remaining valid.”

The 2023 concert series in Bedford Park are slated to be the best ever with international acts such as George Ezra, Ministry of Sound, The Jacksons, Cat Burns, and Sting coming to town to perform.

Over £2 million owed

It has now emerged that the former promoter, LPH Concerts and Events, has gone into administration owing £2.07 million to 70 creditors.

These include Bedford Borough-based Star Group Live, AMG Scaffolding, and Belmont Guard Limited, as well as St John Ambulance, venues, and other private contractors.

During the COVID pandemic, the company also received funding from the Arts Council England’s Culture Recovery Fund (CRF). This amounted to £192,259 in round one and £350,000 in round three.

LPH Concerts and Events put on annual concerts at Bedford Park, as well as events at Hatfield House, Castle Howard, Lincolnshire Showground and others.

It was officially wound up on 28 March after a company voluntary arrangement (CVA) was rejected by creditors.

The promoter’s creditors formally rejected a CVA proposed by Mark Harrison, director of LPH Concerts and Events, which would have given the company a chance to trade its way out of administration.

A significant number of creditors, however, are said to have felt that the company’s sheer amount of debt was too high and could never be paid back in the CVA agreement.

The company will now be struck off within two months, and a creditors committee will decide how assets are to be spent and how any further investigations will take place.

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