There is no willingness to give satisfactory answers to questions about the price of cement in the United Kingdom. Whenever there are potential increases, from the UK manufacturers we only receive aspirational percentage increases. On the other hand, the government then issues numbers revealing trends against an index to understand how much does it cost to lay concrete UK.

This is quite confusing as governments are the ones that should regulate commerce and ensure consumers get value for money. Part of this task is making sure people are charged accordingly for the products they purchase and issuing government recommended prices.

READ: Cost Per Square Foot to Build a House in UK

The situation is more disturbing as we have a market commentary that, “generally confines itself to comparative statements, rather than identifying absolute prices.” As we try to ascertain the actual prices of cement in the UK, we should consider a few aspects that determine prices. The specification, in terms of the type, of cement to be purchased means a different price tag.

Price of cement per tonne, prices to lay concrete UK

The norm has been white cement is approximately three times the price of grey cement. Commercial negotiations of how much business the customer can place on the table can be done for discounts. Another variable is transporting, which can be included or excluded from your bill.

Bulk cement prices are different from bagged products.

In the UK, the price of cement is cited per tonne and no transport costs are included even discounts. This only help with construction estimates but are not good enough to be used as a basis for commercial decisions. You then find that people carry out individual series but their consistency is limited to themselves and can not be compared to each other, to at least derive a reliable price estimate from the consumers’ end.

How much does it cost to lay concrete UK?

The labour cost and price of cement per tonne UK cost between £50 – 60 per m2. That may vary depending on the complexity of the project, building, or job, which determines the price of cement per tonne UK and the time it takes to pour the concrete by the builders and employees. Therefore to answer your question, you will be paying around £320 – £550 per day for the labour. That’s the price of cement per tonne UK and the cost to lay concrete.

Previous pricings of cement in the UK.

Historically there was a legally approved cartel -by the UK Cement Makers Federation- Common Price Agreement (CPA). They operated since 1934 and were abandoned in 1987. Imports had begun putting pressure on the market. Most of these were from countries in which the government dishes out subsidies for fuel to cement makers.

Because of competition, the agreed pricing structure was relinquished and replaced the agreed pricing structure and prices rose sharply in the late 1970s and 1980s. This then declined briefly in the early 1990s.
All that I’ve been able to gather are price indexes and no gazetted price for either a bag or a tonne.

In 2005, the prices were pushed up as a result of fuel costs and the impact of Chromium VI coupled with regulated working time. By January 2006, cement prices had risen by £6 per tonne. Again in 2009, attributed to declining demand and trying to offset falling volumes, another large increase in cement prices happened.

Declining demand saw plant closures which in turn matched the declining demand mentioned earlier. For the first time in a couple of years, prices started declining in the year 2010. This was after poor winter conditions led to low demand and high supply.

As much as looking for the price for cement in the UK seems like a wild goose chase, I got close to a layman’s level of understanding. In 2011, an informal word said cement price was £90/T, while Spon’s Price book 2012 edition had £96/T. Jewson, a remarkable cement distributor prices for two different types of cement, both 25kg in weight, were £6.00 and £7.79. I would say it is safe to use these figures as the workable price range of cement in the UK.

Last year, a shortage of building materials hit the UK, and subsequently, Jewson issued a warning that cement prices were to go up. Unlike in Africa where prices for products like cement are usually stagnant, in the UK you can never really know the exact price as it can change anytime. Fluctuations in cement prices in Africa are usually inflationary. This can be attributed to the abundance of cement-making raw materials in Africa. Contrary, in the UK not much local manufacturing of cement takes place as compared to the former.

It is interesting to calculate the cost of building a home in the UK against the cost of cement. I will leave the mathematics to your prowess. All I am going to do is take you back to a paragraph in one of the discussions around the cost of building a home in the UK per square foot.

In London or the South East, the minimum construction costs range from £1,750 per square meter. When we break it down it comes down to about £160 per square foot. With the prices given by Jewson, you can calculate the cost of the number of bags of cement for your house. This allows how much cement contributes to the cost of building a home in the United Kingdom.