- House builder Persimmon said it would begin a phased restart at construction sites from Monday that had been idled due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The company also announced that it had secured about 820 gross private sales reservations in the five weeks ended 19 April, as its sales team worked from home using online resources.

'The government has issued clear guidance that it sees construction as a vital element of the UK economy,' Persimmon said.

It added that it had developed new site protocols to enable work to recommence, while ensuring that necessary social distancing restrictions were strictly enforced.

'Persimmon's strong financial liquidity has enabled us to maintain our operational capability through this period by supporting all our colleagues on full pay, which will allow us to reopen sites swiftly' chief executive David Jenkinson said.

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