Administrators will this week resume their attemptsto salvage what they can from the wreckage of the Chase Midland development group, parts of which collapsed last week leading to the loss of 157 jobs.
PricewaterhouseCoopers was drafted in to handle the affairs of group division Chase Norton Construction on Thursday and this was followed a day later with Ernst & Young being brought in to administer holding company Chase Midland and the Chase Homes (Eastern) business.
In a separate move on Friday, Deloittes was drafted in to look after the group’s Harborne Apartments business, which was in the process of building a 94-apartment development in High Street, Harborne.
The remaining elements of the business – including Chase Partnership and Chase Commercial – are not in administration.
The administrators have been working feverishly during the past few days to try and find buyers for the collapsed companies. Mark Hopkins, joint administrator for PwC, said talks had been taking place with a number of parties interested in Chase Norton Construction.
All of Chase Norton’s projects have been put on hold, leaving groups scrabbling to find new construction firms to finish the work. In January, the company signed more than £19 million worth of new contracts to work on major projects around the Midlands, many of which were still being worked on when it collapsed.
It committed to a £1.2 million project at St Mary’s Primary School in Kidderminster to overhaul the building’s facilities after the school was expanded last year. The three-stage project included a new children’s centre, admin facilities and two new classrooms. It had been largely completed when Chase Norton collapsed.
Worcestershire County Council said it had been in touch with the receivers and had not yet decided what it would be doing about the unfinished project.
In Birmingham, Chase Norton had been contracted to work on the £4.3 million Villa Cross project for the New Testament Church of God in Lozells.
The Villa Cross project was the name given to the complex which would include a new church and a “purpose built community” in the heart of Lozells. It involved demolishing the current building on the corner of Lozells Road and George Street and putting in a purpose-built facility.
A spokeswoman for the church said it was now looking for a new company to take over the contract from Chase.
Elsewhere, both Persimmon and Barratt Developments will issue trading updates this week which are expected to confirm the deepening crisis in the housebuilding sector. Analysts have predicted that further job losses in addition to the 2,500 announced last week, could be on the cards.