Broken government housebuilding pledges and skyrocketing energy prices are to blame, says GMB.

The brick industry is ‘on the brink of collapse’, GMB union has warned Michael Gove, as crippling job cuts are expected across the sector. 

In a letter to Secretary of State for Housing, the union blames missed government home building targets, and calls for urgent intervention to save the industry. 

The warning comes as construction materials giant Wienerberger announced potential job losses, citing spiralling energy costs and shortage of demand from housebuilding projects.

Meanwhile other major names in the UK’s brick industry have either closed factories or announced job cuts in recent months, including Forterra, Ibstock and Marshalls, who announced 250 job losses earlier this year. 

The brick industry sustains nearly 8,000 jobs in the UK, with countless more in the industry supply chain. 

Stuart Harrison, GMB Organiser, said: “The UK brick industry is collapsing at the same time as people are struggling to find housing. Houses simply aren’t being built and this Government have failed to deliver on their promises. 

“With sky rocketing energy costs squeezing the industry, it’s more important than ever that decision makers consider the thousands of jobs sustained by the sector. 

“Without a thriving brick industry, the UK’s housing crisis can only get worse whilst communities relying on these jobs are plunged into uncertainty. 

“Our union’s priority is to maintain employment in the sector - we will be working with companies to avoid minimise the impact.” 

A Wienerberger spokesperson said: “While we are operating in a tough market environment, it is essential that we make these difficult decisions and implement necessary changes to ensure our business is in a good position.

“We have made efforts to minimise the impact on our colleagues as we will be able to redeploy the majority of affected roles to other areas of our business.

“If demand changes, we will, as we have before, re-evaluate our production levels."

-> Letter from Stuart Harrison to Michael Gove