how long to transfer shares

I know this is a bit like "how long is a piece of string" type question but I'll ask anyway.

So 2 weeks back (3rd Jan) I went online to the account where my employment shares are being held and requested that they be transferred to my investment account.  When I had asked the investment account they were very familiar with this situation (related companies) and gave me all the details to fill in with their account so that there would be no confusion about what info to put where.  And having set up the account I requested that all the shares being held be transferred to the investment account.  

Now I thought this might be like transferring money between bank accounts - all automated and pretty speedy.  But no.  Turned out that first they had to sell sufficient shares to ensure there was enough cash on the account to pay the fees (£15).  And then I started to wait.  And wait.  After a few days I rang them and was surprised to be told "it can take up to 10 working days".  Hadn't expected that at all.  So, while not completely patient, I waited out the 10 days.  Checked occasionally to see if anything had happened.  No, no movement. 

So now it's a full 11 days since the transfer was requested and the shares haven't been moved.  

The only reason I requested the move was because I'm no longer working for that employer and so can't keep the share where they've sat for the last couple of years.  The company holding them said that all transfers had to be done by 15 January otherwise they'd simply sell the shares and ship me the cash.  Well I could have done that and then purchased the same (or different) shares in the investment account if I wished but I have effectively ring fenced these in my mind waiting for the share to get to a certain price before selling.  

Is this normal to take so long on transferring shares?  I don't fancy sitting on hold for an hour trying to get through to someone who may or may not actually know what the problem is - I don't particularly like the company that has the shares as they've made a couple of errors in the past hence me being anxious about this.  Plus this is a significant fund that I don't want to lose - equivalent at the target price of 2 years worth of my take home pay before I left the company.
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