Tory housing rebel insists suburbs 'under siege' by new builds as she seeks to block housebuilding targets

27 November 2022, 17:49 | Updated: 27 November 2022, 17:51

Theresa Villiers is pictured in Westminster last month
Theresa Villiers is pictured in Westminster last month. Picture: Getty

By Adam Solomons

A Conservative ex-minister has claimed that leafy Home Counties constituencies like her own are "under siege" from new housing developments.

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Theresa Villiers told Sky News this morning: "I and many of our colleagues have felt that our constituencies are under siege.

'Of course, we need new homes, but they need to be the right homes in the right places and they need to be supported by appropriate infrastructure.'

Mrs Villiers tabled an amendment to the government's touted Levelling Up bill stipulating that local councils would be unable to consider housebuilding targets when they make planning decisions.

After the clause received support from around 40 Conservative MPs, Downing Street pulled the vote on the bill to consider the proposal.

A new residential building in Birmingham is pictured this week
A new residential building in Birmingham is pictured this week. Picture: Getty

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Some younger Conservative voters have insisted they'll ditch the party if the amendment is voted through, claiming Villiers' plan would further constrain the amount of new houses built in the UK.

PM Rishi Sunak has said that 300,000 homes should be built in Britain each year.

Theresa Villiers represents Chipping Barnet on the northern outskirts of London.

She also told Sophy Ridge: "To meet those targets in the south east, there's a danger that we essentially risk making the same mistakes as in the 60s and 70s with high-rise, high-density blocks with green field development, all of which will be damaging to our environment and the quality of life of many people."

Ex-chancellor Sajid Javid wrote in The Sunday Times today: "If we believe in the importance of a strong, stable family unit, and enter politics to help protect it, then we must also accept that homes should be made available.

"A lack of housing is the most significant barrier to social progress in our country today."

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