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30 Apr 2020 | 08:12

Bellway to start phased re-opening of sites from Monday

(Sharecast News) - Housebuilder Bellway will begin a phased reopening of its construction sites from next week, with social distancing measures in place. Bellway joins peers Persimmon, Redrow, Vistry and Taylor Wimpey, who have all announced already that they will be reopening a number of their sites.

"In order to help meet the expectations of those customers who were expecting to move into their new home over recent weeks, we are concentrating our efforts on those properties that are in the latter stages of construction," the company said. "We will only be undertaking tasks that can be performed by our employees and subcontractors working in a safe and responsible manner, whilst adhering to strict social distancing measures."

The reopenings will begin on Monday.

Bellway said that between 1 August 2019 and 26 April 2020, it completed the sale of 6,506 homes, including 493 which completed on or after 23 March. The order book remains "substantial", it said, with a value of ?1.6bn at 26 April and comprising 5,976 plots.

While its sales centres have been closed since the coronavirus lockdown was imposed on 23 March, it has continued to achieve a "modest" number of weekly reservations over the phone.

"We do, however, expect sales activity to remain severely restrained until we can re-open sales outlets," it said, adding that the cancellation rate, measured as a percentage of the reduced reservation rate over the same period, was 27%.

"The initial recommencement of construction works will enable Bellway to target the sales completion of a limited number of new homes over the coming weeks, although the extent to which this is achieved will depend upon customers' ability to complete and the ability of the supply chain to safely support the industry."
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