Redrow has attacked the Bank of England and the government over the 0.25% interest rate rise, saying they are ignoring the real reason behind the South-east housing boom.

Finance director Neil Fitzsimmons said planning difficulties were restricting the supply of land for new houses and that the government needed to find ways of freeing up more brownfield and greenfield sites.

Fitzsimmons said: “The government hasn’t cottoned on to the problem, and if it continues to raise rates it will damage the rest of the economy. The basic problem is that housebuilders have struggled with local authorities, which are taking an inordinate amount of time getting land through.“

Fitzsimmons was echoing concerns expressed by chairman Steve Morgan in the housebuilder’s annual report and accounts for the year ended 30 June 1999. The company logged pre-tax profit up 15% to £55.6m on turnover up 11% to £341.6m.

Forward sales were 20% ahead of last year at £132.6m. Fitzsimmons said: “Redrow is in as good a shape as we have been.” He added: “We are not trying to create a panic here, but we are waving a flag about the issue of planning.”