The managing director of regional contractor Driver Construction resigned this week after the firm was put into administration
Dean O'Connell expressed frustration at the firm's plight when he quit on Tuesday, saying that since he had acquired the company from John Aviss three months ago he had fought to put it on a firmer financial footing so creditors could retrieve some money.

He said: "It is a real shame. I wanted to get the company into a position where it was ready to go into administration but save the situation and be able to get value out of outstanding contracts for subcontractors."

He said SF Plant had placed the company into administration, frozen its bank accounts and halted work on its contracts. O'Connell added that the largest uncompleted project was a £600,000 contract for a clinic at Maidstone, Kent.

He said that creditors would be furious at the court decision as SF Plant was offering them 2p in the pound, compared with the 67p proposed by previous owner John Aviss as part of a creditors' voluntary agreement.

Building revealed in April that the Serious Fraud Office was looking at the financial difficulties faced by Driver, based at Tring in Hertfordshire, as part of an investigation into the collapse of sister firm Bickerton Construction.

Last month O'Connell acquired all the shares in the company and appointed insolvency specialist Ratcliffe & Co to help sort out the company's financial affairs.

O'Connell sacked Ratcliffe and replaced it with SF Plant after the failure of an attempt to reach a creditors' voluntary agreement.

Ratcliffe & Co refused to comment.

The decision to place the company into administration became necessary after Travis Perkins, one of the firm's principal creditors, launched a winding-up petition at a court hearing last week.

It is understood that the police have interviewed Driver Construction's creditors, but have put inquiries on hold until after the court case.