Fresh statement issued by former Wrightbus owner Jeff Wright in reply to Jo Bamford

Wrightbus employees hoping to start back to work
Wrightbus employees hoping to start back to work

The former owner of Wrightbus Jeff Wright has issued a fresh statement - in reply to one from Jo Bamford.

A prospective bid to buy the administration-hit operation, famous for building London buses, was derailed amid claim and counter claim over the cause of the breakdown.

A dispute over land assets controlled by a former owner of the company is at the heart of the dispute.

Wrightbus was placed into administration last month with the loss of 1,200 jobs.

The Ballymena company faces imminent liquidation if a buyer cannot be found.

English industrialist Jo Bamford, son of JCB chairman Lord Bamford, was trying to acquire it.

In the response Mr Wright says: "The facts of the matter are as follows : Mr Bamford was advised on Friday 4th October that any deal would include the entire premises at Galgorm including the factory, fixtures and fittings. These were available for lease or purchase. Mr Bamford sought to gain unrelated additional farmlands which were not for sale. It is important to note that no other bidder sought at any time to link the farmlands to the business purchase.

"Mr Bamford, as his statement confirms, did not deal with these matters until 10am this morning, Thursday 10th October. In his response he insisted he would not proceed with the deal unless the farmlands were included.

"Mr Wright does not recognise the explanation provided by Mr Bamford as to why he failed to conclude the purchase of the business.”