Politics

Gove to water down house building target after Tory MP backlash

Michael Gove is set to water down the government’s target to build 300,000 homes every year following an angry backlash from his own party’s MPs.

A Commons vote on the Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill had to be dropped last month after 60 Conservatives signed an amendment calling for the mandatory target to be scrapped.

But the legislation is due to return next week, and Mr Gove is now understood to have written to a number of MPs promising the target will instead become “advisory”.

Labour’s shadow housing secretary Lisa Nandy accused the government of being “weak”, calling the move “unconscionable in the middle of a housing crisis”.

The flagship bill is meant to introduce a number of sweeping reforms to the planning system, but has resulted in anger from a section of the Conservative Party.

MPs Therese Villiers and Bob Seely led the campaign against the housebuilding target, saying communities would be forced into accepting unwanted developments.

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