Man behind 'Madchester' fights taxman after Â£50,000 bankruptcy case
The outspoken Mancunian businessman Tony Wilson architect of New Order, the Happy Mondays and the Hacienda nightclub, declared war on the Inland Revenue yesterday after he was declared bankrupt in county court.
Mr Wilson, who has started reading Manchester's TV news again after a music career that inspired Michael Winterbottom's film, 24-Hour Party People, called the circumstances that led to his bankruptcy "Kafka-esque", and insisted he had been the victim of a "clerical cock-up" by the Revenue, which is claiming for £50,000 in unpaid taxes.
"I'm very annoyed," he said. "I don't know what the Inland Revenue has been up to. I'm actually in the most solvent financial position I've been in for years."Mr Wilson insisted he had agreed to pay the debt by remortgaging the £1.8m loft apartment off central Deansgate he shares with his partner, Yvette Livesey. The remortgaging had been delayed for five weeks because of the impending bankruptcy petition, he said. After he secured the remortgage, he said he believed the bankruptcy hearing would be adjourned.
But he claimed it was held without his knowledge, and he was declared bankrupt in absentia. "I'm useless at answering letters and filling out forms," Mr Wilson added. "But I'd said I would remortgage my flat to get this debt cleared and they had the paperwork. When I returned home, I got the letter [telling me of the hearing]. I had missed it by a day."
Financial calamity is not new to 52-year-old Mr Wilson, a Manchester household name in the Seventies as a TV news presenter. Ten years ago, his music business career ended when his Factory Records label went into receivership with debts of more than £2m.
That career began in the mid-Seventies, and he fought to give bands such as the Sex Pistols and Joy Division their first TV chance on shows including What's On and So It Goes,.
He said he would be back in court on Friday to try to have the judgment overturned. A county court spokeswoman refused to release further details of the hearing because of "problems". The Inland Revenue refused to comment.
#JeSuisEd: People share photos of themselves eating awkwardly in solidarity with Labour leader
Florida couple forced to register as sex offenders for having sex on public beach
UK election candidates: 'Nasty party' Ukip faces fresh questions on eve of vote
Who should I vote for in the general election? Take The Independent's interactive quiz to find out which party's the right choice for you
Ohio 'Shawshank Redemption' fugitive Frank Freshwater arrested after 56 years on the run
In defence of liberal democracy
General Election 2015: Post-election 'shambles' looms as 70 per cent of voters say SNP 'should not be able to veto UK government policies'
The Rothschild Libel: Why has it taken 200 years for an anti-Semitic slur that emerged from the Battle of Waterloo to be dismissed?
General Election 2015: UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power, Labour warns
General election live: SNP suspends two members for disrupting Labour rally
General election live: Booths open at 7am across the country on polling day
- 1 Qataris pledge to expand Canary Wharf
- 2 #JeSuisEd: People share photos of themselves eating awkwardly in solidarity with Labour leader
- 3 Women think Irish men are the sexiest, survey finds
- 4 Florida couple forced to register as sex offenders for having sex on public beach
- 5 Watch eerie drone footage of destroyed building in Stalingrad