Stimulus fails to reach building sites

Promised public spending to stimulate the construction sector is failing to find its way to the building site, compounding the effects of the sharpest contraction the industry has suffered since records began, according to a survey of the industry. Central government has pledged to bring forward £3 billion of public spending from 2017-11 to the current year to mitigate the impact of the downturn in private construction spending. But the Construction Products Association said that a survey of members found that 57 per cent of civil engineers, who build big public works such as schools, hospitals and infrastructure, had found public work had declined over the past year and the fall was accelerating. One in seven redundancies in the six months to the end of March were in the construction sector, according to the Office for National Statistics, and some analysts estimate the industry could shed 500,000 jobs through the downturn.