Countryside puts modular factory up for sale

Housebuilder Countryside Partnership has put its modular panel factory in Bardon, Leicestershire, up for sale.

Last month, Construction News reported that the firm had closed one of its three modern method of construction (MMC) factories as it grapples with loses.

It followed the business’ adjusted operating profit, dropping from £37m in the three months to December 2020, to £17m for the same period in 2021.

However, the housebuilder has now appointed chartered surveyor Walker Singleton to market and sell assets of the business.

In a sales brochure, Stephen Jones, machinery and business assets department director at Walker Singleton, said the equipment in the one-year-old factory was state-of-the-art and well-maintained.

“The line has been designed to produce an advanced, closed-panel product, supporting the move to MMC. It is an exciting opportunity for any company wishing to place themselves at the forefront of the timber-frame construction industry.”

He added: “The equipment is geared to a volume output and has the capacity to produce 3,000 units per annum. High regard has been placed on [the] maintenance and upkeep of all equipment, with all assets being of industry-recognised manufacture.”

The facility was run by the housebuilder’s manufacturing arm, Countryside Timber Frame Limited, and it produced a timber-frame manufacturing line and a new floor line.

In 2021, Countryside Partnerships moved away from housebuilding to focus on partnerships and it invested £120m in three factories. The factory in Bardon was set up as part of this forward-thinking drive towards innovation and sustainability.

Earlier this year, the publicly-listed company announced that its shareholders were putting the business up for sale, after a £1.5bn deal fell through.

Countryside has forecast a £150m adjusted operating profit for its full current financial year.

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