In a shocking announcement today, Patisserie Valerie said it could shut down without an immediate injection of cash. The group employs more than 2,500 workers.

The announcement comes just hours after the 92-year-old cake chain admitted a £1.14m unpaid tax bill amid a £20m ‘accounting black hole’. The company has also suspended its finance director Chris Marsh.

The board, which is led by entrepreneur Luke Johnson, said there was a “material shortfall between the reported financial status and the current financial status of the business” and it would need new funds to continue trading.

The board is “assessing all options available to the business to keep it trading”, Patisserie Holdings added.

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