Edinburgh-based Miller Group has boosted its north of England housebuilding operations by acquiring two sites and two projects in progress from Crest Homes (Northern), part of Crest Nicholson.

Harrogate-based Crest Homes (Northern) will close as soon as work on two further sites is completed.

The £30m deal is Miller Group's fifth major acquisition in the past 18 months and follows last week's purchase of East Midlands firm Birch.

The company is planning further acquisitions in its three core businesses of property development, housing and construction services.

Miller now owns two sites in the Leeds area, and two partially constructed projects at Ilkley and Harrogate Hospital. Miller expects to sell 2750 homes a year by 2001, with 70% of these in England.