Cidermaker HP Bulmer said international operations director Tim Furse has resigned and will leave the company at the end of May 2003.

His decision to quit comes just two days after new group chief executive and former Whitbread brewing boss Miles Templeman took the helm.

Furse will step down as a member of the board of directors with immediate effect and will focus his attention on the implementation of Bulmer's international strategy.

Furse follows chief executive Mike Hughes and finance director Alan Flockhart who both left last year after a series of profit warnings.