A new All-Party Parliamentary Group for Housing and Planning has been announced to address what it calls “the national housing emergency” and it is to be serviced by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.
The APPG will be chaired by Conservative MP James Cartlidge and its official objective is “recommending wide-ranging, innovative solutions to reshape the housing market: increasing the housing stock for both rental and private ownership, and speeding up building of sustainable housing in the UK, which now faces an annual shortfall of 130,000 homes.”
There will be four vice-chairs; the popular and experienced Mark Prisk (a Tory MP who has in the past worked for Knight Frank), Labour MPs Helen Hayes and Stephen Pound, and cross-bench lord Richard Best who is also president of the Local Government Association.
“Housing is increasingly becoming one of the most critical policy challenges facing local and national government and with a Housing Bill pending, it is likely to become more political and controversial” says Cartlidge.
“Having spent my working life in the shared ownership housing sector, I am acutely aware of the challenges facing first time buyers, particularly in London. Equally, as a rural MP, I recognise the need for development to be sustainable. Ultimately, there are a whole raft of complex issues in housing and planning today but I hope that our APPG can make a real contribution to the debate” he says.
The APPG aims to deliver its first set of recommendations later this year.