Chairman Alexander Ward said: 'Over recent weeks, natural gas prices have been extraordinarily volatile, and well above last year's levels. Along with many of our competitors, we will be implementing extended Christmas shutdowns, at two factories.
National brick demand has also fallen back by around 220 million as increased interest rates hit consumer confidence and subdued the housing market.
Baggeridge's pre-tax profits for the year to September fell 30 per cent from £8 million to £5.5 million. Turnover eased off 4 per cent to £50.1 million, compared with £52.3 last time.