Birmingham newspapers collapsed owing £343,000

THE publishing company behind the now defunct Birmingham Press collapsed owing £343,186, including £145,000 to its founder and director Chris Bullivant.

Liquidators Begbies Traynor have written to all creditors, a list which includes journalists, solicitors Irwin Mitchell and Lloyds TSB, detailing to the penny the money owed by Mr Bullivant and CJB Media, the company he founded to launch The Birmingham Press in April.

Mr Bullivant invested £145,000 as a director’s loan, while his other company Bullivant Media Ltd is owed £23,177.30 – one of 38 firms on the list, according to a report by newspaper trade website HoldtheFrontPage.co.uk.

North Wales Newspapers, a company based in Mold which publishes daily and weekly newspapers, is owed £107,362.88, believed to be in respect of a printing contract.

Irwin Mitchell is short by £2,162.59 while Lloyds TSB Commercial is owed £1,527.96.

Some of the journalists who did freelance work for the paper have been left with debts running into the thousands with one, Rosalind Dodd, owed £8,900.

Dave Ismay, a former Aston Villa executive who wrote a weekly sports diary column, is owed £4,465.

The Birmingham Press and its sister title The Birmingham Free Press closed last month after Mr Bullivant decided he could not compete with advertising rates he claimed were being offered by rival newspapers in the city.

Mr Bullivant was unavailable for comment.

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