Company News in Brief

Berry Birch Noble, provider of insurance, pensions and financial services, revealed a fall in pre-tax profits from pounds 460,000 to pounds 380,000 in the six months to 31 July. Turnover increased to pounds 4.05m ( pounds 3.6m). Earnings per share are 4.4p (5.3p). Dividend is cut to 1.8p (2.1p).

William Bedford, the antiques dealer and restorer, turned around from pounds 11,000 taxable loss to pounds 96,000 pre-tax profit in the six months to 30 June, helped by a sharp rise in sales to pounds 1.2m ( pounds 651,000).

Earnings per share recovered to 1.8p (LPS 0.1p).

Henry Boot & Sons, the property and construction group, lifted pre- tax profits to pounds 2.6m ( pounds 2.35m) in the six months to 30 June, supported by an 11.5 per cent increase in turnover from pounds 64.6m to pounds 72m. Earnings per share improved to 6.8p (6.3p). Dividend is 1.85p.

Castle Mill International, the fashionwear and handbags importer and distributor, deepened taxable losses to pounds 323,000 ( pounds 256,000) in the six months to 30 June. Sales were marginally ahead at pounds 1.04m ( pounds 1m). Loss per share, however, was cut to 1.58p (1.84p).

Town Centre Securities, the property developer and investment group, hoisted pre-tax profits from pounds 8.1m to pounds 8.8m for the year to 30 June.

Turnover was better at pounds 20m ( pounds 18.2m). Earnings per share rose to 6.75p (5.65p). Final dividend is 2.6p, making 3.8p (3.4p).

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