respond to Margaret Beckett's speech

“It is encouraging to hear Margaret Beckett stating an early intention to prioritise a close working relationship with housebuilders in her first address to the industry. Clear communication between the housing minister and developers, and greater transparency in the planning process, are fundamental to ensuring the current squeeze on mortgage finance does not lead to a major supply crisis in the near future.

“I am encouraged that she has brought the issue of public land for development to the forefront at this early stage of her tenure. Housebuilders are under immense pressure in this period of financial uncertainty, with overall Government targets looking increasingly insurmountable. The new minister needs to make her mark quickly by addressing issues such as affordable and eco expectations, and with actions not words. Land supply and planning issues will be crucial elements for the housebuilding industry as it emerges from the downturn.”