Bonmarché’s management have sold their shares in the business to Philip Day, just weeks after telling shareholders to ignore the entrepreneur’s offer.

Chief executive Helen Connolly, finance director Stephen Alldridge and senior independent non-executive director Isobel Macpherson have all sold their stakes after the retailer’s third-largest investor Cavendish Asset Management disposed of a 10.8% stake last week.

Connolly sold 42,542 shares to Day for just over £4,868 last night while Alldridge made almost £58,245 for his 508,910 shares.

Day, the boss of Edinburgh Woollen Mill Group, which owns Edinburgh Woollen Mill, Peacocks, Jaeger and Austin Reed among others, picked up the shares through his investment vehicle Spectre Holdings.

The entrepreneur purchased 52.4% of Bonmarché shares in April, triggering a takeover bid.

He offered to buy the remainder of the shares for 11.45p per share, which the fashion chain’s directors unanimously recommended shareholders rejected, saying it “materially undervalued” the company.

Following a tough first quarter the board then made a U-turn on its decision to reject the offer, saying it was now “more attractive in the short term” and recommending that shareholders accept it.

Day responded by imposing a deadline on his offer to buy the retailer, saying he was worried about its ability to operate as a going concern, an issue which had been flagged by its auditor PWC.

Day now owns around 67% of the retailer and needs 75% to take it private.

A spokesman for Edinburgh Woollen Mill declined to comment. Bonmarché could not be reached for comment.