The next government will have to walk a tightrope to tackle the housing crisis

A pledge on building more homes was conspicuously absent from Sir Keir Starmer’s first steps pledge last week.

Whoever forms the next government is going to have to face the harsh realities of the perpetual housing crisis.

While it is accepted that Britain has not been building enough homes to meet the needs of the population, simply concreting over parts of the country is not sustainable. Nor will it be welcomed by many voters.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The next government will also have to ensure that there is a strong relationship between authorities and housebuilders. Housing needs simply won’t be met without them. At the same time, it needs to be a robust partnership where housebuilders deliver on their obligations.

Labour deputy leader Angela Rayner during a visit to a housing development. PIC: Joe Giddens/PA WireLabour deputy leader Angela Rayner during a visit to a housing development. PIC: Joe Giddens/PA Wire
Labour deputy leader Angela Rayner during a visit to a housing development. PIC: Joe Giddens/PA Wire

That is why the Deputy Leader of the Labour Party’s comments in Leeds are to be welcomed.

At the UKREiiF conference today, Angela Rayner is expected to promise a new dawn to housebuilders who meet their obligations.

She is right to acknowledge that it isn’t just about putting up new houses. There needs to be a strong infrastructure around developments, sufficient schools, GP surgeries and green spaces.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

While the pledge to build new towns is eye-catching, it remains to be seen where these new towns will be placed. Any new developments are likely to be met with some opposition. This is the challenge that Labour will face in Government.

Tinkering with housing policy is not going to go far enough but at the same time growth in housing cannot come at the expense of the countryside.

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.