Phil Spencer's Property Crash

TV star owed thousands to Hammersmith and Fulham Council

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Hammersmith and Fulham Council is among a long list of organisations owed thousands of pounds after the failure of TV presenter Phil Spencer's company.

Phil, 39, co-star of Channel 4's Location, Location, Location formed the company, Garrington Home Finders, with his wife Fiona in 1996.

The company, based in Lots Road in Chelsea, found homes for wealthy clients including stars like Kylie Minogue and actress Keira Knightley. It prospered during the property boom with records showing that between 2004 and 2007, turnover increased from £653,474 to £2,195,442.

But everything changed as the credit crunch began to bite, and after paying staff out of his own pocket in a desperate attempt to keep the business going, he was forced to admit defeat in February and call in the receivers.

Now the administrator's documents show that Garrington owed a total of £576,052 when it collapsed. Debts included £185,000 owed in tax, £141,000 to Lloyds TSB Bank,£21,218 to landlords Chelsea Harbour and £4,534 owed to the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham.

There were also outstanding phone, electricity and stationery bills. When the firm flopped, a disappointed Phil said: "I have, together with others, fought tooth and nail to keep the company alive and keep everyone in jobs."

His Location, Location, Location co-star Kirstie Allsop has sympathised with his plight, saying:

" I felt very sorry for him. He paid the salaries of his staff himself for the last six months and he put everything into it. But everyone has stopped buying houses and Phil was paid to help buy houses. "

22nd April 2009