Some of the UK’s biggest housebuilders have spoken out in support of the use of timber frame in construction, despite another fire that destroyed a block of flats under construction in Hertfordshire last week.

Persimmon, the third biggest housebuilder in the UK, said that it used timber frame in 10% of the 17,000 homes it built in England and Wales each year, and intended to continue.

A spokesperson said: “There’s a stigma attached to timber frame that isn’t fair. It can improve operating efficiency. We will continue to use it as we don’t consider it to be a risk.”

Other housebuilders that back timber frame include Countryside, Barratt, Bloor and Cala.

Paul Pedley, deputy chairman at Redrow, said: “We use light-weight steel, but there’s nothing inherently dangerous about timber frame, as long as it is finished properly.”

The fire, in Hatfield, was on a Mansell site. No one was hurt in the incident. It followed a blaze in Colindale, north London, in July 2006, in which a St George timber-frame housing scheme burned down in just nine minutes.