Poor turnout sees Pleasure Gardens go into admin
London Pleasure Gardens has entered administration just a few weeks after arriving at the Royal Docks.
The initiative, labelled an 'evolving cultural destination' and aimed at bringing a Victorian-style amusement park to east London, has struggled to attract sufficient numbers.
A statement from Newham Council said on Friday afternoon: "The decision by London Pleasure Gardens Limited to enter into voluntary administration is regrettable but understandable.
"It is disappointing that the anticipated visitor numbers and revenue from recent planned events have not materialised.
"We continue to believe that the site has a viable long term future as a visitor attraction and destination."
The council lent organisers £3million for the project and is looking to continue the scheme in a bid to recoup some of that money.
Rob Harding, Joint Administrator and partner in the Restructuring Services practice at Deloitte, said the gardens had "underperformed" in terms of both activity on the site and visitor numbers.
"This has manifested itself in a cash flow shortfall in the business resulting in the directors having no option but to appoint administrators," he said, before adding it was looking at ways to continue operating the attraction.
"We are in discussions with all of the key stakeholders with a view to ensuring continuity of services on the site, whilst seeking purchasers for the business and assets, which include significant semi-permanent event structures."
The pleasure garden's idea became a reality after winning the Boris Johnson-backed Meanwhile London competition to transform parts of east London for the coming years.
Critics said the project looked rushed as organisers tried to get the scheme running this summer to capitalise on pedestrians coming to the Excel for the Olympics.
However, the promised numbers failed to materialise.
Administrators were called in after the company was besieged with problems since opening on June 30.
Most notable was the Bloc festival fiasco, which was due to feature Snoop Dogg. However, dangerous overcrowding at the dockside venue saw police helping people to safety before promptly closing the site.
The London Pleasure Gardens co-founder and creative director Deborah Armstrong then resigned from the project after being critical of the progress.
Much of the site was boarded off while some parts of the scheme - such as the pop-up hotel - were put on hold.
Users also complained of excessive dust from the brownfield site.