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Leading law firm calls for 'revolving door' of housing ministers to be closed

The government is being urged to close the "revolving doors" of the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) to help the property market.

The suggestion is top of the list of ideas from law firm Irwin Mitchell for new Prime Minister Liz Truss.

The wishlist, compiled by Irwin Mitchell’s planning partner Nicola Gooch and Claire Petricca-Riding, head of planning and environment, said stability is needed in the ever-changing government department.


The list stated: “England is in the middle of an acute housing shortage. We are trying to fix it with a planning system that is close to breaking point. 

“The reasons for this are myriad, complex and interconnected. There is no silver bullet. No single solution. Tackling the crisis will take a concerted effort, over a considerable period of time, by people who truly understand the sector.

The constant churn of senior ministers at DLUHC has not helped. In fact, it just adds to the sense of uncertainty and instability which is leading many local planning authorities to delay or defer work on their local plans.”

The statement highlights that the department has had seven secretary of states and eleven housing ministers in the past 10 years, adding: “It is rare for an appointee to remain in place for more than eighteen months.

 “This level of turnover makes it almost impossible for the politicians in charge of resolving our housing crisis to truly understand it. A situation which does not help the consistency or quality of decision making.

“If the new Prime Minister is serious about tackling the housing crisis, we need a significant period of stability at DLUHC. Let’s hope Simon Clarke is up to the job and stays the course.”

The law firm also urges Truss to take local government and civic infrastructure seriously and says it is time to “stop demonising Developers and deifying the green belt.”

It comes as Marcus Jones became the latest Housing Minister to step down from the role last week.


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