Basildon Council has responded to the news that its main contractor on the cinema-led regeneration of East Square, Simons Group, has fallen into administration
The news that the contractor had gone into administration broke on Tuesday (29 October).
Leader of Basildon Council, Gavin Callaghan, said: “I was of course very disappointed to hear the news about the Simons Group. We have responded immediately by taking a number of steps to ensure that the project for a cinema-led regeneration of Basildon’s East Square remains on track.
“First, we have acted to ensure the site, where demolition and preparatory works are taking place, is safe and secure. Squibb Demolition were working under subcontract to Simons and we understand they will have had to bring a halt to their work for now.
“Second, we are working hard to find a speedy solution so that this preparatory work can continue as soon as is practicable.
“Third, we are urgently exploring options available to us so we can secure the services of a replacement contractor and minimise any delays to the project. That includes talking to the Administrators appointed for Simons about the assistance they have offered.
“Construction work is due to begin in the spring of 2020 and due for completion early in 2021. We are doing all we can to avoid any serious disruption to this timeline.
“Finally, we will take every step to protect the public spend on this project and ensure it continues to provide excellent value for money.
“The council remains absolutely committed to this project, which is key to our plans for the long-term regeneration of Basildon town centre.”
Simons Group fell into administration following a period of contract delays and difficult trading which resulted in unsustainable cash flow difficulties.