Brick industry denies shortage

The Brick Development Association has called a recent report which claimed the housebuilding industry was facing a 1.4 billion brick deficit “out of date and unhelpful”.

According to the association, brick production has risen significantly over the last two years to support the growth in housebuilding. “This is a lazy analysis,” said Andrew Eagles, CEO of the BDA. The BDA represents 99% of the brick manufacturers in the UK.  We can report with absolute authority that there is no shortage.”

The BDA reported that there has been a significant increase in brick production over the last 15 months, which the ONS confirms. The Construction Products Association, Builders Merchants Federation and major house builders also confirm that they have not seen any issues with brick supply in the last year.

The report for the NAEA citing a brick shortage is reportedly based on data from April 2015. This is 15 months out of date. Eagles has called it misleading and damaging for the brick and construction industry.

“I find it astonishing that the CEBR felt it useful to release a report that was so out of date,” said Eagles. “Where there are concerns we are happy to discuss these with organisations so the real issues can be uncovered.

“The challenges the brick industry faced in 2014 when there was a dramatic increase in housebuilding are now behind us and the industry is confident it can meet the growing demand for its products in housing and other construction projects.”

Indeed, in the second quarter of 2016, deliveries have been 10.4% higher than in the first quarter. The deliveries in June are also 7.4% higher than the figure predicted in May.

“The kilns are fired up across the UK and the BDA looks forward to making their contribution to addressing the chronic housing shortage that has built up over recent decades,” said Eagles. “The re-openings and development of new brick plants are already incredibly positive signs in the revitalisation of the housebuilding sector.

“We should take positively from the news that new-build housing has risen, and should continue to rise over the next year as more focus is directed towards the current housing situation.”

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