The property industry can no longer grumble that the government does not take the housing market seriously after the Prime Minister yesterday chaired the first meeting of her new housing task force.
The gathering included a long list of ministers from heavyweight departments, who were urged by the Prime Minister to work together to help fix the “broken housing market” and deliver her much-promised figure of 300,000 additional new homes built by the mid-2020s.
Ministers attending the Housing Implementation Taskforce included Communities Secretary Sajid Javid, Chancellor Phillip Hammond, Damian Hinds from Education, Michael Gove from Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Chris Grayling from Transport and Tobias Ellwood from Defence.
One oddly conspicuous name left off the list of attendees was Dominic Raab, the Minister of State for Housing, who since being appointed in early January appears to be spending more time fighting Amber Rudd over Brexit than tackling his brief.
“The taskforce discussed the steps Government has already taken, including further investment announced during the latest Budget, planning reform, releasing land faster, the Housing White Paper and building more affordable housing,” a government spokesperson said.
“They emphasised the key role of Homes England in driving forward change, and also focused on the supply of new housing, public sector land sales, land banking, house-building skills and building the infrastructure needed for new housing developments.“The Prime Minister reiterated that a step change was needed right across Government and that all departments needed to think creatively about how they can contribute to building the homes the country needs.”