Government will not cut 300,000 housing target

Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick has defended the government’s housing plans, saying that the government won’t cut its target to build 300,000 homes a year.

Several Tory MPs have expressed concern that the government's plan could mean more homes in rural areas and undermine the government's ‘levelling-up’ agenda. This includes former Prime Minister Theresa May, who labelled them ‘ill-conceived’ and ‘mechanistic’.

Whilst saying that the government ‘will listen’ to views on where new homes should be built, he stressed that ministers won't cut the target.

Outlining plans to tackle homelessness over the winter, Jenrick said he wanted to encourage more building in the Midlands and the North rather than London, going on to say that he wanted new homes to be built in every part of the country, including in those areas where it is expensive to live.

The Housing Secretary stated that local councils would be given a rough estimate of how many homes needed to be built in their community, and then they should come forward with potential sites for new buildings - taking into account constraints such as areas protected by the green belt.

The plans have also been criticised by the director of the National Trust Hilary McGrady, who told The Times that she had ‘significant concerns’ and said it ‘must not lead to concrete deserts devoid of green space, lacking corridors for nature and sustainable travel’.