Henry Boot Covid tests show no greater risk from construction

Grant Prior 10 months ago

Covid tests carried out by Henry Boot have revealed no greater risks of infection for those working on construction sites.

Chief Executive Officer Tim Roberts detailed the firm’s response to the pandemic in its latest set of annual results released today.

He said: “The safety and welfare of our people, customers, supply chain, and the communities in which we operate have been the key priorities in Henry Boot’s response to the Covid-19 outbreak and I’m relieved to say that the safety procedures we have installed have allowed us to continue operating safely.

“We have monitored infection rates closely using lateral flow testing, including in our largest construction site at Barnsley, and there is no data to suggest that the people who have been working on site and in our depots have been at greater risk.

“Whilst I want to thank everyone at Henry Boot, I would like to give special thanks goes to those who have worked on site or in our depots so effectively, away from the relative safety of home working.”

Pre-tax profit for the year to December 31 2020 fell to £17.1m from £49.1m last time as turnover dropped to £222.4m from £379.7m.

But the impact of the pandemic wasn’t as bad as first feared and Roberts said the balance sheet was “rock solid” with £38.5m of cash in the bank.

Henry Boot is now looking to expand with a focus on the three areas of industrial and logistics, residential and urban development.

The construction division generated an operating profit of £6.5m from turnover of £86.2m with activity levels recovering to 95% of pre-pandemic by the end of the year.

Roberts said: “We have had a good start to the year securing new opportunities and are now ahead of our expectations having already secured a full orderbook for 2021.

“We are still receiving good tender opportunities and are well placed as the economy recovers through our presence on nine public sector national and regional frameworks, where we expect spend on construction projects will be maintained by the Government’s Build Back Better policy.”

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