Contractor Carillion and its joint venture partner Enterprise have been appointed preferred bidder on a ministry of defence prime central contract worth more than £500m.

The 50/50 joint venture will be responsible for the building, refurbishment and maintenance of about 8500 buildings and other MoD infrastructure in the north of England, the Midlands and Wales. The initial contract starts next April and will run for seven years, with a possible three-year extension.

It is the second large MoD contract won by Carillion in as many weeks. Last week a joint venture led by the company was appointed to upgrade MoD family accommodation in a contract worth up to £700m. It will undertake work on 40,000 properties with Atkins and Enterprise.