Disgust at missing Fortune refund

A former Fortune Theatre member who missed out on getting payment for her cancelled tickets and membership says members should have been contacted directly by the theatre or liquidators.

Kaye Wilson's membership and prepaid tickets became worthless after the theatre closed earlier this year.

She expected to be contacted regarding repayment through a members' email, but realised that would not happen after news last week the theatre's liquidator had paid 100% of what it owed.

Liquidator Insolvency Management Ltd last week said all external creditors, ticket holders and members had been paid.

But Mrs Wilson said she had not, and she knew of four other former members in the same position.

Her claim is backed up by former Fortune Theatre Trust chairwoman Dame Elizabeth Hanan, who described the matter as ``reprehensible''.

Fortune Board of Trustees chairwoman Haley van Leeuwen responded yesterday that ticket-holders, or anyone else who had lodged a claim, had got their money back.

The liquidation had been done by the book, but all money had been paid out and it was now too late.

Mrs Wilson said she had paid her membership and pre-booked seats for the year in January, with tickets to four shows.

The cost of the tickets was $112 on top of the membership fee.

``We're just a wee bit annoyed because they did have our email addresses.

``I feel they should have emailed all the members.

``We've heard nothing from them at all.''

Ms van Leeuwen said members had not been emailed but the Fortune had updated its website, the Friends of the Fortune sent an email to its members, and an email address was set up for people owed money.

Insolvency Management Ltd put notices in the Otago Daily Times.

``We've followed the book in terms of how it's supposed to go.''

People could apply to the liquidator for a refund, ``but it's not likely at all they would receive money''.

Mrs Wilson said that response was ``terrible''.

She questioned who checked insolvency notices.

``The five of us, reasonably intelligent people, assumed we would be contacted.

``We've been loyal members for a while now, and the whole thing is quite disgusting, really.

``I just think it's been slipped under our radar.''

Dame Elizabeth said in a letter to the editor of the Otago Daily Times that ticket-holders and members had not been advised claims had to be lodged, yet email data and lists were available.

``This is reprehensible and needs to be rectified before the completion of payouts.''



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