Major North East employer Hargreaves Services saw revenues fall by more than a quarter as it was hit by project delays, in a year in which it moved away from its coal mining traditions.

The Durham based business, launched as a coal haulage company in 1994, is now involved in land development as well as specialist distribution and earthworks services, having made the landmark decision in May to cease all coal mining activities.

The firm said it performance for the year ended May 31 was satisfactory, seeing revenues fall as expected by 26.5% from £302.6m to £222.2m, largely as a result of delays to the full mobilisation of the HS2 project.

Following a tax credit of £2.1m, the profit for the year from continuing operations was £4.3m, compared to last year’s loss of £8.2m. Basic underlying earnings per share from continuing operations were 19.9p, up from 15.3p.

The firm incurred losses of around £8m last year following the liquidation of both Wolf Minerals and British Steel, but the group has recovered £3.8m so far against the losses.

 Meanwhile Hargreaves Land, the group’s property business, announced in May the exchange of its first major commercial contract on Unity, a massive mixed use development site at Hatfield, South Yorkshire.