Ex-greyhound staff say they are owed thousands of pounds

FORMER staff at the now-closed Portsmouth Greyhound Stadium are owed almost £137,000, it has been revealed.

Angry ex-employees attended a creditors' meeting, a month after the company was liquidated.

Trainers and staff have so far not received any redundancy pay and many are asking when the owners of the company knew the lease for the site would not be renewed.

Ex-track manager Paul Clark, who says he's owed 15,388.56 for unpaid redundancy and holiday pay, has joined four other ex-employees in setting up a creditors' committee to help the liquidator Michael Fagelman get to the bottom of the finances.

'We didn't get the response we were looking for today,' he said.

'But the liquidator knows more now about what went on, and hopefully together we'll be able to get to the bottom of it.'

Mr Clark claims he was suspended from his job in March after raising concerns about whether the track's lease would definitely be renewed in April.

He said: 'All the trainers received a letter in November assuring them the track would be safe for at least one whole year.

'That's what has made them angry, we all want to know why that letter was sent if no agreement had been reached.'

A dog trainer at the stadium, Pete Harris, is owed 614 and said that after November's letter he was encouraged to buy more racing dogs in the belief that the stadium's future was secure.

'I bought three more dogs and now I'm having trouble selling them on,' he said.

'We're worried that if we can't find homes for them they might have to be put down.'

A senior representative from the British Greyhound Racing Board (BGRB), Paul Ellingworth, said had the regulator known the stadium's lease ended in April, a year's licence may not have been granted in November.

'We are concerned that no contingency plans were put in place to prevent what has happened now that the lease has not been renewed,' he said.

The board has encouraged employees to take advantage of a hardship fund set up to aid them until they can find new jobs.

The greyhound stadium is on land owned by the Tipner Regeneration Company and South East England Development Agency which didn't renew the lease as it wants to redevelop the land.

Ex-greyhound staff say they are owed thousands of pounds

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