A STORM of protest has broken out over the firm at the heart of the St George’s Square revamp.
Hundreds of former workers at Shropshire-based Wrekin Construction have staged a protest days after 420 people lost their jobs.
The firm went into administration last week.
Now it has emerged that the company has a ruby, the so-called Gem of Tanzania, listed as an £11m asset.
One former employee likened the firm’s acquisition of the stone as like something “out of a Disney film.”
A convoy of workers protested yesterday at the firm’s head office.
Accounts show that in 2007 the company exchanged £11m worth of shares for the ruby.
Its valuation was apparently confirmed by an Italian institute of gemologists.
Accounts state that: “The fair value of the ruby gemstone was determined by a professional valuer at the Instituti Gemmologico Italiano based in Valenza, Italy, on 31 August 2007.”
Administrators Ernst & Young said the company had tax liabilities of over £3.5m and was due £2m from government contracts at the time of announcing the job cuts last week.
It is also the subject of about 40 county court judgements, the spokesman added.
Wrekin said it had millions of pounds of orders and blamed Royal Bank of Scotland for its situation, because the bank would not extend credit to cover cash-flow problems.