Housing chiefs at war with minister

Grant Prior 14 years ago
Share

Leaders of the National Housing Federation have sparked a war of words with housing minister Grant Shapps over fears that the number of affordable homes under construction could crash by 65%.

The federation is warning that construction of affordable homes could grind to a halt this year as cash pledged for new projects is withdrawn, budgets are cut and changes to the planning system take hold.

Federation leaders have written to Shapps warning that building work might only start on 20,390 social homes this year – the lowest figure since 1990.

But the minister has dismissed the industry’s fears as he continues with a radical revamp of the sector.  

Shapps warned last week that around 150 social housing projects were under threat because of a £610m ‘black hole’ in the Government’s finances.

Housing associations have already invested millions of pounds in developing sites for new homes – but now face the prospect of the promised money being withdrawn.  

The Government has already announced £100m will be cut from the National Affordable Housing Programme (NAHP), which was meant to deliver 59,0000 new social homes this year 2010/11.

The withdrawal of this funding will see plans to build another 1,453 social homes axed. 

Federation chief executive David Orr said: “The brutal impact of funding cuts combined with the introduction of ill conceived changes to the planning system could lead to a 65% slump in the number of new affordable homes built this year.  

“Worse still, unless the Government takes steps to modify some of the policies recently announced we fear that the overall number of affordable homes built in subsequent years could fall to an even lower number.  

“Given the scale of housing need across the country, we cannot afford for the building of affordable homes to effectively grind to a halt.”

But Shapps countered: “Houses cannot be built by targets that don’t work with money that doesn’t exist.”

Latest news

Willmott Dixon set for Manchester science park job

Contractor understood to be in final stages of talks to land £75m Greenheys building
2 days ago

Stewart Milne went down owing supply chain £153m

So far 1,375 firms have come forward with unpaid bills
3 days ago

Didcot disaster investigation enters its ninth year

Still no answers for families of quartet killed in demolition collapse
2 days ago

Mount Anvil wins £275m Westminster estate renewal

First phase of Church Street area regeneration will deliver 400 new homes and a library
3 days ago

Trio of A47 road upgrades to go-ahead as legal challenge fails

20-month delay adds tens of millions to dualling costs
3 days ago

Skanska and Morgan Sindall win £277m duo of Cambridge jobs

Railpen awards £200m Botanic Place and £77m Devonshire Gardens office jobs
3 days ago

Offsite specialist Merit sees profits grow

Contractor sees further growth in turnover and profits
3 days ago

Morgan Sindall delivers another record year of profit

Revenue tops £4bn as pre-tax profit soars 70% to £144m
3 days ago

Galliford Try nets two pipelines and road job worth £98m

Firm wins £64m of Thames Water pipelines and Halifax road improvements
3 days ago

HS2 viaduct blunder over wonky concrete segments

Align JV now drilling out concrete joint as part of week-long remedial work
4 days ago

City of London hots up as 9m sq ft under construction

Investors return to City as "10 Cheesgraters" of floorspace under construction
4 days ago

Four arrested in £140m property fraud probe

Serious Fraud Office investigating collapse of property developer Signature Group
4 days ago

McLaren gets green light for 31-storey student tower

Revamp of historic Birmingham site will provide 759 student beds and 189 apartments
3 days ago

BT Tower to become hotel

New owner MCR Hotels to transform iconic building
4 days ago

Plans in for first phase of £1.7bn ID Manchester

Plan to reinvent 1960s Renold Building as a new innovation hub
4 days ago

London £3bn housing framework out to tender

SMEs allocated slots on London Construction Programme housing framework refresh
4 days ago

BAM wins first major RAAC school rebuild

Contractor seals £46m deal for St Leonards school in Durham
4 days ago

Failed strip out specialist owes £1.5m to supply chain

More than 100 subcontractors and suppliers left with unpaid bills by Type Ten Limited
5 days ago

Councils to turn screw on building owners over fire safety upgrades

Government tells councils to step up legal action against rogue building owners
5 days ago

Green light for £300m Fenland energy from waste scheme

Wisbech incinerator will generate 50MW from half a million tonnes of waste
5 days ago

Multiplex starts on 50-storey Thames tower

Developer green lights construction of latest phase of £3bn Bankside Yards scheme
5 days ago

McLaren lodges fresh Reading Broad Street Mall plan

Town centre scheme will deliver 600 homes in four towers
5 days ago

Beard bags £24.5m Bristol office revamp

Construction to start in April
4 days ago

SMEs star in £3.2bn social housing upkeep deal

Around 85% of Efficiency North's framework winners are local firms
6 days ago

Scottish NHS new building projects delayed for two years

Spending clampdown hits over a dozen planned projects
5 days ago

Balfour M25 workers hold strike ballot

Motorway maintenance crews unhappy with 3.4% pay rise offer
6 days ago

Rainsford Contracts acquires M&E specialist

Expanded contractor will have turnover of £45m
5 days ago

Statom expands with launch of Northern HQ

RC frames specialist now targeting jobs in Scotland and north of England
6 days ago

High Court dismisses Stonehenge tunnel challenge

Judge quashes legal challenge against Government consent for £1.7bn job
6 days ago

£1.5bn Teesside carbon capture scheme consented

Final investment decision expected this year for construction start
6 days ago

Contractor services