Gordon Brown stressed the government’s determination to try to kick-start the mortgage market after yesterday chairing a summit with the construction industry.

The prime minister assured representatives of the housing and building sectors that the government recognised the need for the resumption of 'proper funding' from banks.

Ministers are working urgently on measures to free up lending to homeowners and small businesses, with a credit guarantee scheme under consideration. Construction industry representatives at the Number 10 meeting stressed their ailing sector’s need for more support after a 'disappointing' pre-Budget report.

The summit was the first in a series with the government, in what the sector hopes is a sign that construction is moving up the political agenda. Housebuilding dominated the roster of attendees, with Mark Clare of Barratt Developments joining trade bodies in asking for help.

Financial Times