Simon Chalk - released
A response to speculation about the nature of Simon's
financial position ...
Over the past two years there has been
a number of negative news stories in relation to my past
business affairs and personal finances.
When the initial collapse of the banking industry took place
there were various facilities in place for lending in
relation to my construction business. Just before the
collapse of Northern Rock our lenders, contrary to their
loan agreements, withdrew funding without notice.
I made a series of decisions in an
attempt to save the construction business and to protect my
company and family. It could not have been foreseen that the
building industry and lending market would take such a
negative fall. Once this spiral took effect I was powerless
to change its course or retrieve the business from a
With the failure of my construction
business, I was eventually declared bankrupt in December
2008. For the past two years there has been an in depth
investigation to all the decisions that were made within the
previous two years of trading as a sole trader.
On the 11th November I was
released from bankruptcy but with certain restrictions in
relation to holding the position of company director for a
period of 5 years. In December 2008 I turned my complete
focus into supporting and helping Woodvale Challenge Ltd to
create safe and successful ocean rowing events.
Woodvale Challenge Ltd stands
completely separate to my personal financial affairs. Within
the period of my bankruptcy, the company has managed the
successful conclusion of the Indian Ocean Rowing Race 2009
and the Atlantic Rowing Race 2009. Within the latter event,
all 30 boats within the race successfully completed the
Atlantic crossing – this is a first in the history of ocean
I have immensely enjoyed making a
difference within the sport of ocean rowing, and although it
is far from desirable that anyone should have a business
that fails, the lessons of managing a failing business will
be etched deeply and past mistakes will not be repeated.
The Woodvale group of companies
involved in Ocean Rowing have gone from strength to strength
in the past 3 years. Our Atlantic Rowing Race in December
2011 is shaping up to be one of the biggest rows in history
and we are in final stages of preparation for our world
record breaking Atlantic attempt in January 2011(The Allum
Cup). Without doubt, 2011 will be an exciting year for ocean
rowing, and will be followed by our inaugural Row Round
Britain race in the Olympic year.
I am happy to answer any questions
openly and honestly regarding my own personal finances.
Please be assured that as a member of staff for Woodvale
Challenge Ltd, my personal financial position will not
affect the business in any way.