Ian Scott International


Property market in UK regions remains strong

The development market for both housing and commercial buildings is holding up in the UK regions as land sales remain high, according to land company Harworth.

The company has continued to buy sites in the north of England and the Midlands in order to expand its pipeline, and has ambitions to expand into other regions of the UK.

Harworth, which owns and manages more than 22,000 acres of land across 140 sites, works to make so-called brownfield land suitable for development. Much of its portfolio comes from its former life as the real estate arm of UK Coal.

Andrew Kirkman, financial director at the firm, said the current high availability of land meant the company had been able to invest. “There are more sites out there for us to buy than we have money for,” he added.

This had been underpinned by a shortage of homes in the UK’s regions, as well as demand from businesses for commercial space, particularly around manufacturing hubs.

Owen Michaelson, chief executive of Harworth, said: “The Government is still a big supporter of brownfield development.”

The company raised £27m from investors earlier this year, and has now spent around £16m, with plans to spend the remainder before the end of the year.

It has recently bought two sites in the Midlands, plus another site in Bolton, with the potential to build hundreds of homes and 1.2m sq ft of commercial space.

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