Red Lion Quarter troubles: Manager gone and cost-cutting under way

Richard Baggaley, who has now left his role as Red Lion Quarter manager,  and operations manager Steve Kerwood.

Richard Baggaley, who has now left his role as Red Lion Quarter manager, and operations manager Steve Kerwood.

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THE RED LION Quarter in Spalding is in turmoil less than three months after opening – with its manager already gone and consultation talks with staff to look at how to cut costs.

The Lincolnshire Free Press understands that the £6.5million centre’s food court is losing money and none of the shop units on the ground floor are filled, prompting the board to step in to try to turn things around.

Richard Baggaley, who oversaw the building project and then became general manager, has left.

The venue is run as a community interest company by a board of directors.

In a statement the board said: “The company running the newly opened building, the Red Lion Quarter, Spalding, has taken steps to reduce costs within its organisation in order to help secure the long term viability and success of this exciting new facility.”

It added: “This is a testing time in which to launch a new business and the company is facing wider economic pressures to which the board must respond.

“In view of this, a range of further efficiency measures are being considered to ensure that it has a sustainable future.”

A consultation exercise with staff will look at how to make the centre “more robust and efficient”.

The food court will remain open and students of the new South Lincolnshire College will soon occupy the middle floor of the building.

The project saw South Holland District Council team up with the East Midlands Development Agency, Lincolnshire Enterprise, Boston College and Lincolnshire County Council to bring investment into Spalding town centre.

A South Holland District Council spokesman said: “The council understands the difficulty in establishing a new business and is fully supportive of the steps being taken by the company that runs the Red Lion Quarter to reduce its costs.”

Mr Baggaley declined to comment to the Lincolnshire Free Press.