The trend of the past week has been that those building sites that do want or need to stay open – and both Public Health England and the government say that they can – have struggled to function as supplies dry up.
Yesterday industry leaders wrote a letter to the prime minister asking him, among other things, to building materials manufacturers , wholesalers and retailers to re-open their doors because they are making it impossible to operate.
Today Alumasc, which makes gutters and drainpipes, revealed that it has decided to close its Burton Latimer and Halstead sites (AWMS and Wade) during the current crisis, as part of wider cost saving measures. The majority of employees at our closed locations are being furloughed under the government Covid-19 job retention scheme.
“This follows further construction customers closing their sites,” Alumasc explained.
It’s what we described earlier this week as a chicken and egg situation – contractors and developers say that lack of supplies is forcing them to close sites, while manufacturers and builders’ merchants say that the reduction in sites is forcing their closure.
Alumasc says that it expects its own shut-down to last only for three weeks, with planned re-opening on 22nd April at Burton Latimer and 23rd April at Halstead. Its Gatic covers, Rainclear and Building Envelope businesses remain open and operating as normal to reflect current demand, it said.