The mood was not so much one of indignant fury but quiet disappointment in Founders Hall for the Candover AGM yesterday. 

A contrite and clearly uncomfortable chairman Gerry Grimstone took the stand – looking like a schoolboy caught with his hand in the biscuit tin, wishing he could be anywhere else. 

 

He said he had lain awake at night re-examining the decisions that have devastated the share price and brought the company to the brink of sale. And it was easy to believe him. 

 

Company founder Roger Brooke spoke from the floor of his personal hurt and sadness at the damage to the company’s reputation.

 

“I do find it odd that the board was not aware there was a financial crisis,” added his co-founder and past chairman Stephen Curran.