Cheers to new start for Corrimal Leagues

Regulars at Corrimal Leagues Club raised a glass to the future yesterday as the venue was declared safe from closure.

Paul Balfour and club regulars celebrate. Picture: GREG TOTMAN

Paul Balfour and club regulars celebrate. Picture: GREG TOTMAN

The club was in danger of being liquidated almost four years after it went into administration with debts of more than $5 million.

A creditors' meeting in Sydney offered support for changes to a deed that, according to club directors, had financially hamstrung the venue.

Club director Paul Balfour said the decision meant the club would be taken out of the hands of administrators and returned to members.

Its lease has been extended until mid-2015 and it will no longer have to shoulder hefty monthly repayments towards a current debt totalling about $1.8 million.

"Getting to here was massive," said Mr Balfour, who led sweeping changes at the venue to return it to financial health, including staff cutbacks.

"We'll be able to trade without carrying any of the old debts.

"From the club's perspective they've been wiped."

The club went into external administration in February 2009 and sold its Railway Street premises, car park, two houses on Junction Street and a vacant block to clear debt.

It continued to trade, but under conditions including $32,000 in monthly rent and $22,000 in deed repayments.

The uncertainty meant the club was unable to book weddings or other events and it was charged default rates for utilities.

Some suppliers, including Fosters, refused to do business.

Mr Balfour said he would work towards further strengthening the club's financial position.

"This opens it up for full trade," he said.


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