Balfour Beatty, the construction company behind Hinkley Point C in Somerset and HS2, suffered another half-year loss for its UK construction division.

The company that built the Stonehouse Incinerator in Gloucestershire says Covid-related disruption has hampered work in the UK, where it posted a loss of £ 23 million in the first six months of 2021, similar to the same period of the previous year.

Profits across all sectors were £ 35 million, as opposed to a group loss of £ 26 million for the same period last year.

UK sales rose 28% to £ 1,262m (2020: £ 986m) as a result of backlog growth in 2020 with higher volumes at HS2 and Hinkley Point C.

Public sector and regulated industry customers accounted for over 90% of UK construction revenue during the period (2020: 80%).

Problems with private sector real estate projects in central London have been exacerbated by COVID-19 disruptions, which has resulted in project timelines being extended.

This situation has led to a re-evaluation of these contract end dates, resulting in write-offs on a small number of contracts.

As a result, Balfour Beatty will no longer make offers for fixed price residential real estate projects in central London.

US Construction posted an underlying operating profit of £ 20m (2020: £ 6m) for the period, up on pre-Covid levels (2019: £ 19m).

Leo Quinn, Chief Executive of the Balfour Beatty Group, said: “We will continue to redesign Balfour Beatty to realize its strengths. This includes leadership skills in markets where governments are committed to long-term infrastructure programs.

“It means excluding regions and sectors that cannot offer profitable, low risk growth in favor of those who can. Our priority is to execute our already strong order book, which results in attractive cash generation and returns. “