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Saturday, 19 April 2014

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Carlisle nightclubs put into liquidation by owner

Two of Carlisle’s best known nightspots face an uncertain future after debts prompted their owner to put them both into liquidation.

Dan Russell photo
Dan Russell

The amounts owed by the two clubs – Club Rock in English Gate Plaza and Outrageous in English Street – have not been revealed by their owner Dan Russell.

The Newcastle-based insolvency practitioner firm Robson Laidler has now written to creditors to arrange meetings on February 11.

The letters, sent out to all the creditors of the two companies which run the clubs, Dan Russell and Atlas Developments Ltd, and Atlas Developments Leisure Ltd, says: “In view of the company’s financial position the director has decided to commence liquidation proceedings.”

Outrageous, billed as a gay friendly cabaret bar, is one of the most colourful nightspots ever to open in Carlisle.

The cash crisis has come just six months after it was revealed that Mr Russell had battled his way back to health after suffering a massive brain haemorrhage which medics had feared would kill him.

Speaking yesterday, he said the problems facing the clubs do not affect his other businesses, a martial arts school and property rental service.

Mr Russell, 65, said: “It’s been a very bumpy road.

“But I hope people will be able to get some satisfaction out of the liquidation process and it is important that they know that I’m not avoiding my responsibilities.

“I don’t believe that Outrageous will close. I believe it will continue under new management. But I do doubt Club Rock will continue.”

Mr Russell blamed the financial problems with the latter club on the level of rent demanded by the building’s London-based landlord.

He said: “It’s very understandable, of course, that they want their money but those premises won’t support that level of rent.”

The crisis has come despite both clubs seeing what insiders say was a “significant” increase in turnover last year.

The creditors’ meeting for Atlas Developments Leisure Ltd, the company behind Outrageous, will be on February 11, at the Hallmark Hotel in Carlisle, at 1.30pm.

The meeting for creditors of the other firm involved, Dan Russell and Atlas Developments Ltd, will be held at the same venue on the same day, but starting at 11.30am.

Mr Russell has become known as one of the city’s most colourful characters.

A former soldier, he owns the Atlas Works complex in Denton Holme, and is a respected martial arts expert and teacher.

He put down his amazing recovery from his brain haemorrhage to his lifelong fascination with fitness, meditation, and positive thinking, as well as good medical care.

The father-of-seven refused to be beaten, and defied all expectations to recover.

He said at the time: “My experience has given me a sense of urgency, showing me that some things are more important than others.

“Family and friends have become more important to me.”

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