Lenders to McCarthy & Stone, the retirement home builder taken private by Sir Tom Hunter at the height of the property boom, are close to saying they will take control of the business.

It is understood that the banking syndicate led by HSBC and Lloyds Banking Group could announce as early as today that it has turned down a plan led by the Reuben brothers, the property specialists, and ADM Capital, the distressed debt investor, to restructure the company's £900m debt mountain.

The Times