Job losses across the housebuilding industry are close to 8,000 and rising — double the number announced so far.

The claim by industry insiders came as Redrow and Bovis Homes revealed plans yesterday to cut 40% of their workforces — approximately 540 people at Redrow and 400 at Bovis Homes.

Persimmon said on Tuesday that it was cutting 1,100 jobs, but it added that 900 casual staff would also be laid off. Last week, Barratt Developments — which is expected today to announce a rescue fund-raising package with its lenders to extend the repayment of £400 million of debt — announced plans to cut 1,000 of its 6,700-strong workforce, while Taylor Wimpey said it would be axing 900 staff and closing 13 of its 39 regional offices. If this pattern was repeated across the industry, total lay-offs in house building would exceed 8,000.

The Times