The man behind a failed eco scheme to turn cow dung into diesel has been made bankrupt with debts of £4million.

Earlier this month we revealed how Scottish farmers and businessmen had invested up to £8million in a firm set up by Martin Frost in 2014 to develop the concept and bring it to market.

Seven years later stockholders – who put in up to £1.25million – have still to see a return on their cash, a dividend on their shares or the product go on sale.

Frost, 73, and his wife Janet, 65, were bankrupted at a hearing of the Business and Property Court in Leeds last week after failing to pay £4million due to United Kingdom Agricultural Lending.

The court was told the couple had taken out a loan with the firm – who specialise in finance for the farming community – but had not kept up payments.

Frost asked the judge to give him more time to pay the debt, claiming he was due a £6.6million windfall from the sale of patents to Israel and $20million from a Texas bank.

But the couple were made bankrupt after they failed to provide evidence of the sums and their ability to pay. The judge said: “This is not the first time this has happened.”

Frost, who represented himself, indicated he would appeal the decision in a higher court. He also claimed the papers were not properly served on him.

Frost’s aim is to establish “cow palaces” in Scotland and Ireland, where high-quality cattle would produce better beef and milk, with the methane from their waste converted into cheaper, cleaner diesel for cars, vans and lorries, using a chemical additive called Avocet.

The two firms Frost used to launch the green diesel concept – Avocet Infinite and Omega Infinite – are in liquidation.

Alastair Munro

Edinburgh businessman Alistair Munro bought £750,000 of shares in 2017 in cash and was given £250,000 in shares for work he did for Frost. But he said he’s given up hope of getting any money back.

A Borders farmer, who asked not to be named, said he had lost £1million.

Frost’s business dealings are being investigated by the UK Government’s Insolvency Service.

Frost confirmed he and his wife will be appealing. He said a court error meant the judge hadn’t received a file showing his ability to pay.

He added: “Senior counsel believes Janet and I should win our appeal.”

He said his bankruptcy shouldn’t affect Avocet shareholders’ investment.