Rishi Sunak makes Brummie homeowner a cuppa as he stops off at housing estate
Prime Minister Rishi Sunak spent time speaking with homeowner Jennifer Norton during a visit to a Birmingham housing estate.
The PM made her a cup of tea in a number 10 mug, in her home during a visit to Crofton Park, near Rednal, Birmingham on Monday morning.
It comes as the Prime Minister confirmed that the Conservative government is on course to meet its target of building one million homes between 2019-24.
He also met with apprentices and graduates, during the visit to Crofton Park.
It comes as Rishi Sunak hit out against “top-down targets” on housebuilding amid signs the Government is rowing back on the Tory manifesto commitment to build 300,000 homes a year by the mid-2020s.
Housing Secretary Michael Gove, delivering a speech on planning reforms in London on Monday, said “I completely stand by” the target, but did not say when it would be reached.
Ministers are well short of the figure after the Prime Minister last year made it advisory rather than mandatory as he looked to see off a potential backbench rebellion.
There were signs of more local Tory opposition to his housing strategy as the Conservative MP for South Cambridgeshire Anthony Browne vowed to “do everything” to stop the “nonsense plans to impose mass housebuilding on Cambridge”.
Responding to the criticism, Mr Sunak stressed the importance of bringing “local communities along with you” as he said Westminster politicians should not “ride roughshod over those views, impose top-down targets, carpet over the countryside”.
Asked whether the manifesto pledge of 300,000 new homes a year still stands, the Prime Minister told reporters at the housing development site in Birmingham: “We are making progress, I’m proud of that progress and we’re not stopping there.
“But we’ve got to do it in the right way, I don’t want to concrete over the countryside, that’s something that is very special about Britain.
“We’re making it easier for people to expand homes upwards and outwards, we’re making it easier to build on brownfield sites with more investment and we’re investing in the planning system.”