It is set to be a very merry Christmas for construction companies across the UK thanks to the latest Markit/CIPS UK Construction Purchasing Managers' Index.

The report has seen the fastest rise in output and jobs since August with November's figure sitting 62.6, up from the 59.4 in October. Any figure above 50 suggests growth in the market and this has provided a timely boost to the country's construction industry. One of the driving forces behind the acceleration in growth was the strong performance of the housing market.

Construction buyers stated that house building activity over the past month attributed to the fastest growth rate for the past ten years. Work on commercial projects had also received a shot in the arm with the rate of expansion hitting a six-year high. It is a significant milestone for an industry that was hit hard by the recession in 2008.

Tim Moore, senior economist at Markit and author of the UK Construction PMI, said: “Construction growth is still coming from a low base as output levels rebound from a deep and protracted double-dip recession that only really ended this summer.

“Therefore, while construction’s current growth trajectory may be the steepest for over six years, there is still a huge loss of output to recoup before the sector reaches its pre-recession peak."

The housing market has providing stimulus for all aspects of the construction sector and it was recently announced that brick kilns would be running over Christmas for the first time since 2007 to meet the demand. Housing minister Kris Hopkins stated that one of the driving forces behind this activity was the new Help to Buy initiative which helps first-time buyers get their foot on the property ladder.

Mr Hopkins stated that brick production over 2013 is set to hit 1.73 billion bricks, which is enough to go around the world nine times.

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