As if the poor flood-ridden folk of Kirkstall haven’t suffered enough.
It’s unpalatable to say the least that just two months after finding themselves four feet deep in water, businesses in the Burley Place business park off Kirkstall Road (remember Kirkstall Road from Boxing Day? It wasn’t a road then; more a tributary of the Aire) are facing rent hikes of up to 78 per cent.
Companies in the area contacted us after receiving letters giving them what they claim amounts to a ‘pay up or leave’ deadline by relatively new owners London-based property company Regus.
One businessman, Tony Johnson, said he had been told his rent was due to go up from £838 a month to £1489 - a staggering 78 per cent hike.
After protesting, he was told it would be reduced to 30 per cent.
Fellow businessman Alex Koi’s comment that the increase had proved more devastating than the flooding are telling indeed.
His rent was raised from £980 to £1,498, a 50 per cent increase, but he was subsequently offered a reduced 35 per cent.
Regus’s timing couldn’t have been worse.
Of course they might well have valid business reasons for their actions, and, of course, we’d love to hear them, and publish them here.
Alas, at the time of writing, despite repeated requests, no comment has been forthcoming.