Dave Allen has this evening confirmed he is resigning as chairman and director of Chesterfield.
Allen, the former chairman of Sheffield Wednesday, made the shock announcement at tonight's AGM, which follows Saturday's 4-1 defeat to local rivals Sheffield United.
None of Allen's former board members were aware of any announcement, and Allen promptly left the AGM. Shareholders objected to the meeting being closed, and an EGM will be called in the next 28 days.
Allen took charge of Chesterfield in 2012, succeeding long-serving Barrie Hubbard. He told the AGM: "At this point, I must inform you that as of now, I resign as chairman and director of Chesterfield Football Club.
"At the outset, I never intended to become the chairman. I was just an investor who wanted to see the club progress and get into the Championship. It was then my plan to sell on the investment.
"I took over as chairman because the previous incumbent sat at the end of the boardroom table and said after one meeting that unless I put a further £600,000 into the club, they could not carry on. This was after I'd already previously put in over £2m, over and above the initial deal, which was £4m for 80 per cent of the shares and arranged a £2m mortgage over a ten-year period. I did all that.
"The reason I'm resigning is because at the board meeting held this afternoon, I suggested that all the directors should not seek repayment of loans and waive any interest until such time as the club is in a position to pay it. The interest along amounts to just over £150,000 per annum, so it would be a considerable saving.
"By the way, over the last couple of years, I've put in an extra £1.9m, for which I personally have not taken any interest at all. It is a sad day for me, but I can't carry on like this. I wish you all the best. There will be no further statements on this subject from me, either verbally or written."