The administration includes Group subsidiaries:  Stewart Milne Homes North West England Ltd; Stewart Milne Homes Central Scotland Ltd; Stewart Milne Central Scotland (Developments) Ltd; Stewart Milne (Arbroath) Ltd; Stewart Milne Homes (Auchterarder) Ltd; and Stewart Milne Homes (Kirkton) Ltd.

The companies, which operate sites across north-east and central Scotland and the north-west England, ceased trading with immediate effect and no further construction is being completed. Some 217 direct jobs jobs have been lost and the closure will have ramifications for the Group’s supply chain.

"The downturn in the UK housing market combined with an extensive sales process not resulting in any viable offers has ultimately led to the need for the directors to place Stewart Milne Group Ltd and some of its subsidiaries into administration, regretfully with some immediate redundancies,” said Adele MacLeod, joint administrator Adele MacLeod of Teneo.

"We continue to assess all the options in respect of the group's Scottish development sites and encourage any party with an interest to get in touch."

Chairman Stewart Milne, who founded the company in 1975, had put the business up for sale in 2022, with a view to retirement. Ernst & Young was appointed financial adviser but failed to conclude a deal. Stewart Milne Group had already sold its timber frame division in 2021 to Donaldson Group to reduce its debt burden, but apparently other options to restructure the group were ultimately deemed to be not viable.

In the year to October 31, 2022, it latest filed accounts, the group turned over £172m and made a pre-tax profit of £16.5m. Turnover was down £50m on the previous year because of the sale of the Stewart Milne Timber Systems subsidiary to Donaldson.

"I am devastated by this totally unexpected outcome of the sale process and struggling to accept it, given the profound impact it will have on employees, sub-contractors, suppliers and customers,” said Mr Milne.

"Stewart Milne Group was up for sale and, following significant interest, two bids were submitted. The bank has not accepted either bid and withdrawn its funding.

"I tried everything I could to find a way to achieve a better outcome for the business and the people who depend on it.

"I believe one of the bids could have delivered a comparable, financial return to administration and, crucially, allowed the business to continue to operate, safe-guarding hundreds of jobs and protecting livelihoods."

“Following their appointment, the joint administrators will focus on realising the group’s assets and pursuing an orderly wind down of the business, retaining 54 employees to assist with managing this process,” said Teneo administrators. “An additional 58 employees aligned with the operations of Stewart Milne Homes North West England (Developments) Ltd have been retained.