Shares in specialist chocolate retailer Thorntons rose 5p to finish on 121p yesterday following the appointment of former Somerfield chairman John von Spreckelsen as chairman.

The appointment was welcomed by analysts. Richard Ratner from Seymour Pierce said: “If anyone can nurture Thorntons so that it eventually achieves the rumoured 180p-plus that the family appears to be looking for, then von Spreckelsen is the man.”