The directors of a debt-ridden Camden development scheme refused to cooperate with administrators and failed to turn over complete accounts, a report claims. 

The £32m “Park Place” complex – 60 luxury apartments near West Hampstead station – was funded in 2016 and intended to "spearhead the ongoing regeneration” of Kilburn High Road. 

But by late 2020 the block, overlooking Kilburn Grange Park, was unfinished and the partnership set up to deliver it had collapsed, owing more than £26m to creditors

We reported last year that first-time buyers who paid large deposits were left in limbo as their move-in dates were repeatedly delayed. 

Those who did move in said it was a “nightmare”, akin to living on “a construction site”. 

The government's Insolvency Service has now released an investigation report by Moorfields Corporate Recovery, appointed as administrator in December 2020. 

It raised concerns about the way 254 Kilburn HR LLP was run, and said the LLP’s three “directors” failed to cooperate with the administrators. 

But nobody linked to the partnership faces any further action over what the government called “allegations of misconduct”. 

Ham & High:

Who ran the LLP? 

The directors were three corporate entities: Cogress 254 Kilburn HR Limited, Cogress Kilburn HR Limited Partnership, and Kilburn High Road Limited.  

Online Companies House records do not say who ran any of them, but Cogress was an investment firm which put clients’ money into property developments. 

Cogress put £6m into Park Place. It has since gone into administration.  

We contacted administrator Kroll, which now represents Cogress, but it declined to comment. 

Developer Paul Godfrey, who conceived the Park Place scheme, was not linked by Companies House to any of the three directors – but he was the signatory on 254 Kilburn HR LLP’s £19m loan from OakNorth Bank. 

We tried repeatedly to reach him over the past two weeks at his previously advertised phone number and email address, linked to his development firm Godfrey London. 

Godfrey London has since been liquidated. While the phone number and email address appeared to still be working, Mr Godfrey did not respond. 

Ham & High:

Missing Accounts and Unpaid Taxes 

Moorfields told the government that the directors had not delivered “adequate books and records” to explain “the company’s financial position at any given time”.  

Only “some” books and records were turned over, it wrote, and it was “uncertain” whether the LLP had “ever kept records sufficient to show and explain its transactions”. 

The last available accounts were from over a year before the LLP ceased trading. 

Moorfields also found “evidence of a failure by the company to properly deal with its tax affairs and liabilities”.  

What happened? 

Mr Godfrey said last year that Brexit and Covid-19 had caused “unprecedented” delays to the scheme. 

But he disputed Moorfields’ assessment of the LLP’s finances. 

“We contest the calculations,” he said. 

“We believe that in principle it would be viable to complete the scheme in a manner which maximises the body of the creditors’ interests, realising sufficient funds to settle them, as was our intention.” 

Ham & High:

Moorfields, however, told Companies House that OakNorth Bank was owed more than £25.5m when the LLP collapsed. 

Its latest report, written in June, said OakNorth had since been paid £4.75m, but added: “It is not anticipated that the secured creditor will be paid in full.” 

All other creditors – including HMRC – are therefore expected to receive nothing. 

What now? 

When Moorfields first took over, it said 31 units remained available. 

Most have since been sold, including 15 to a housing association. 

But its June report said eight remained on the market. 

Despite its findings about 254 Kilburn HR LLP, Moorfields told government Insolvency Service there were no “civil or criminal matters that are being investigated or ought to be investigated”. 

An Insolvency Service spokesperson said: “Following a thorough investigation, it was determined that all types of creditors had been treated equally and that wider allegations of misconduct were not sufficient to make a disqualification order in the courts a realistic prospect.”