To all our customers in Scotland,
I want to thank you, on behalf of Taylor Wimpey, for your patience and understanding during this time, and for the feedback and overwhelming support you have given to our teams. We are very grateful. Supporting and protecting our employees, customers, subcontractors, suppliers and communities during the COVID-19 crisis has been, and continues to be, Taylor Wimpey’s first priority.
We were the first homebuilder to stop construction on sites and close sales centres in the wake of the pandemic and the lockdown restrictions. We took this decision for health and safety reasons, and because it was essential to be confident that we could modify our working practices to adhere to strict social distancing and this required time and careful planning. We simply were not, and are not, prepared to compromise on health and safety - ever. We have continued to adhere to Scottish Government guidance in relation to construction works ceasing, and I am writing to update you of our plans for a phased return to site activity in Scotland in order to play our role in the safe reopening of the Scottish housing market.
From Thursday 28 May 2020, our site management teams will begin to prepare sites for a new method of operating. Implementing strict social distancing protocols based on the latest Scottish Government and Health Protection Scotland guidelines will allow us to make our preparations for a sensible and well managed, slow but steady and safe return to permitted construction activities.
We have worked with partners, and reviewed guidance issued by the Construction Leadership Forum in Scotland and advice from the Health and Safety Executive to assess each and every aspect of our site activities and address the changes that need to be made in order to fully comply with the restrictions imposed by current social distancing requirements.
Having done so, we are now confident that we have a robust set of detailed protocols and revised guidelines which we believe can operate safely and on a sustainable basis for as long as is necessary. These protocols include a fully revised set of working practices and additional precautionary measures, including modified site operational practices, revised Risk Assessments, Safety Method Statements, COVID-19 inductions and site format. We will start the process of planning for the remobilisation of construction in a controlled and managed way, on sites in Scotland which meet certain criteria including car parking availability and ease of access, from w/c 1 June 2020. This decision is based on current Scottish Government guidance and medical advice and if this was to change, we would conduct a further review.
In order to ensure that the correct behaviours are embedded, upon which a significant element of the restrictions rely, we have planned a managed and gradual site start. The phased nature of our restart is key in order to make the necessary adjustments to site safely and properly and to train our employees, suppliers and subcontractors in the new requirements and ways of working.
We do not plan to reopen sales centres or show homes at this time until we receive the support of the Scottish Government.
Customers living in a Taylor Wimpey home
We have no current plans to reopen sales centres or to restart non-emergency customer visits, because this is not a permitted activity under the Scottish Government’s latest guidance. However, we remain committed to you, our customers and fulfilling our responsibility to you as soon as we are able. Until the Scottish Government eases further restrictions, it is not possible for any non-emergency work to be carried out on your home, but we do remain fully committed to restarting works on a phased basis when this is permitted.
What this means to you is that whilst we remain open for business online and are here to help you, our immediate intent is to continue to follow the guidance developed with our Health and Safety team allowing us to safely carry out emergency repairs only to get your household back up and running, even if this means more permanent repairs being carried out at a later date.
Whilst Scottish Government restrictions remain in place, we will not be responding to non-emergency issues within occupied homes. However, we are planning for the point when social distancing measures are amended, and we can begin the staged return to resolving issues within occupied homes.
Our homes come with a two-year Taylor Wimpey warranty. As a thank you to all our Scottish customers for your patience and support during this time and to give you added reassurance, we will extend our two-year warranty for all customers in warranty (regardless if you have just started that warranty period or are running out) by three months free of charge. We want to make it easier for you and to show we remain absolutely committed to you.
We will continue to communicate with you regularly to ensure you are clear on our procedures at all time.
I want to end the same way I started this, by thanking you for your support and understanding. We remain committed to you and our teams are on hand to help where we can.
CEO Taylor Wimpey plc