Contractor feels the effects of housing downturn as it prepares to shed 600 jobs

Taylor Wimpey is to close 13 offices across the UK, which will mean the loss of 600 jobs.

The offices all over the UK and the job losses represent more than 10% of its 4,700 UK staff.

An email was sent to staff on Monday informing them of the closures, which will all take place by the end of September.

The move comes amid signs that the credit crunch has affected the firm’s housing division, where it is thought most to the job losses will take place.

Peter Redfern, Taylor Wimpey chief executive

Chief executive Peter Redfern said: "Our experience in the US and historically in the UK is that when housing markets slow, those that react most quickly and decisively become stronger businesses, and provide the most secure and positive environment for their continuing staff."

Taylor Wimpey saw a significant writedown on assets in Spain and the US wipe out profits for 2007 .

The firm reported a pre-tax loss of £19.5m in 2007, against profits of £405.6m a year earlier.

Taylor Wimpey closures

George Wimpey North Scotland

Bryant West Scotland

George Wimpey North West

Bryant North Midlands

Bryant East Midlands

Bryant South Midlands

Bryant Anglia

George Wimpey South Wales

Bryant Peterborough

George Wimpey South West

Bryant London

Bryant Eastern

Bryant South East