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Statement from Steve Midgley, MD of Fairgrove and Director of the East Midlands Chamber of Commerce re 2017 Budget

“Having now heard the details of Mr Hammond’s Budget regarding the housing sector, there are elements that we welcome, and other parts where we remain cautiously optimistic about the future.

Scrapping stamp duty for first-time buyers is excellent news, and will provide a much-needed boost to the market. But an extension of the government’s Help to Buy scheme beyond 2020 would also have been useful.

The £44bn in government support to boost construction skills is also obviously hugely positive – providing it’s implemented where it’s needed – as is the review into delays in permitted developments. As one of the smaller house builders in the region, delays have a huge impact on our cash flow, so any improvement to the current system and processes would be beneficial.

As with every Budget announcement, the devil is in the detail. I’m hopeful, rather than confident, that these announcements will lead to a boost for the housing sector and the economy as a whole.”