NAO director Jeremy Coleman said company doctor David James, brought in this September to manage the troubled project, believed the New Millennium Experience Company was insolvent in February – long before PricewaterhouseCoopers reported the company would have gone bust without further lottery money.
The NAO also said that directors of the NMEC sought indemnity from the government against being prosecuted or disciplined for trading insolvently in June 2000.
The damming report did not blame particular parties but highlighted the inadequate financial controls at the attraction as a major cause of its difficulties. ‘The financial management was not robust,’ said Coleman.
The report also criticised the lack of any contingency plan and wind up procedures.
Finance director Neil Spence resigned in September.
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