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Curtains for Hackney

This is the sad tale of the £11 million refurbishment project at Hackney Empire Theatre.  Following the insolvency of its main contractor, Sunley Turiff Construction, it was left facing a £3.2 million hole in its finances.  The new theatre’s first season of productions and the Christmas pantomime had to be cancelled and tickets refunded.

You would have thought the theatre could take some comfort from the fact that a £1.1 million performance bond had been taken out with Aviva to cover any damages caused by breaches of the building contract.  But, instead, Hackney Empire was left fighting a claim by Aviva that the performance bond had been discharged as a result of actions Hackney had taken to assist the contractor in completing the building contract. More…