The Stewart Milne Group has recorded a record 65% rise in annual pre-tax profits to £14m and achieved phase one production targets at its Oxfordshire timber frame factory.

The company’s total turnover jumped 18% from last year to £177m, while the Timber Systems Division saw sales increase from £37m to £48m.

The £10m Witney timber frame facility recorded a £15m turnover and production reached about 3,000 units. Output will rise to an optimal level of 5,000 units during the next 12 months, helping the factory play a key role in the long-term development of the group.

Stewart Milne Group managing director Glenn Allison said: “All the housebuilders are looking at timber frame and some are embracing it quicker than others. We believe it’s steadily increasing right across the housebuilding sector and that will continue because of the requirements in the new Building Regulations and labour shortages throughout the UK.”

Mr Allison said the government’s recent housing initiatives, particularly in the south of east of England, has further boosted timber frame. But he said the planning process was still “quite slow”.

A new IT system installed at Witney is expected to help the business in the next 12 months.

The group’s landbank has continued to grow and now stands at more than 3,000 plots, while average house prices have increased 11% in the North to £124,000 and by 9% in the South to £142,000.

  • Leading business figure George Gillon has become the Stewart Milne’s first non-executive director. Mr Gillon chairs surveyor and property consultants LSM Partners.