Theresa May has put the finishing touches to her cabinet and made a final round of ministerial appointments, with a number of key promotions which will shape the housebuilding industry. Yesterday, it was announced that Gavin Barwell would succeed Brandon Lewis as Minister for Housing & Planning.
Ben Gummer has been tasked with overseeing the Government’s construction strategy, with responsibility for procurements, cost-cutting and implementing BIM. The MP for Ipswich took to Twitter to say he was “immensely honoured” by the promotion.
Robert Halfon, MP for Harlow, has been assigned to the Department for Education (DfE) as the Skills Minister; he replaces Nick Boles, who backed Michael Gove in the leadership race and resigned a few hours before Theresa May was confirmed as Prime Minister.
Halford announced on Twitter that he will be responsible for skills, apprenticeships and education.
Halfon is a known supporter of vocational training, and was named Avanta’s Politician of the Year for his work on apprenticeships. He’s also a big fan of trade unions, which he has campaigned for Conservative supporters to become more involved in.
Elsewhere, Emma Jones MBE has been appointed Small Business Crown Representative, taking the helm from Sir Stephen Allott. This role is part of the Crown Representative Network, introduced by the Cabinet Office to align the procurement process across all government departments.
It is hoped that Jones, who was awarded an MBE for Services to Enterprise in 2012, will be of particular service to construction SMEs, who make up 18% of businesses in the UK’s private sector and have the worst payment record of any industry.