A director of the Brighton i360 admitted this afternoon that the business had not sought a rent reduction.
The revelation came as four i360 directors, seeking to defer loan interest payments, answered questions from members of Brighton and Hove City Council.
Green councillor Phélim Mac Cafferty asked whether the company had asked its landlord, the West Pier Trust, for a rent reduction.
Dick Russell, one of the directors, said: “No, we haven’t asked for a rent reduction. We do have continuing discussions.
“The rent seems to us to be fair and reasonable as it stands. It’s geared to the levels of visitor numbers, subject to a cap of £250,000 a year.
“We’re not thinking of a conversation about the rent level. We do have conversations about other matters.”
Replying to Conservative councillor Steve Bell, Mr Russell said: “We have a 100-year lease from the West Pier Trust. We regard ourselves as fully committed to the West Pier Trust.
“We’ve supported them for many years. We continue to perform our obligations to them.”
Despite the revelation, nine out of ten councillors backed a request to defer a £570,000 payment to the council which falls due on Saturday (30 June). Only Steve Bell abstained.
Councillor Daniel Yates, the Labour council leader, urged colleagues not to get hung up about visitor numbers.
The most important thing, he said, was whether it could service its debts, adding: “This is one of the most serious investments the city has made for many years.”
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