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Quarriers warn of autumn price rise

AGGREGATES suppliers have warned contractors to prepare for a hike in materials prices this autumn.

Andrew Dougal, chief executive of giant producer Hanson, said: 'Contractors tendering for work now need to factor materials rises into tenders. They will become a reality.' Hanson is blaming the planned increases on energy price rises, which have added £8 million to its costs in the UK during the past six months.

David Neave, RMC Aggregates managing director, confirmed that his company was also considering a price increase, due to the 'exceptional circumstances' of the rises in carbon fuel prices.

Mr Neave said it was too early to say when the increase would be imposed or how big it might be.

Robert Durward, director of the British Aggregates Association, said independent operators would be forced to follow suit.

He said: 'Independent quarry operators can only follow the prices charged by the majors within their local market places.

Recent consolidation among the big companies is putting upward pressure on prices, as we warned at the time, so we are not surprised that prices are now rising.'