Edmund Francis Hughes MP, Minister of Housing who was imperative to the draft of the White Paper on reform of the PRS, has announced his resignation. This was done in a tweet: "I have decided to hand back by red box in return for the opportunity to spend yet more time working for my constituents in Walsall North, championing their causes in Parliament. Thank you to all in the rough sleeping & housing sectors for support during my time as a Minister".
In addition, Marcus Jones, who had only been in post as Treasury of Her Majesty's Household (Deputy Chief Whip) since the Chris Pincher scandal on 30 June 2022, has also stepped down from his role — the Department of Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) has witnessed a complete desertion of ministers in recent times. Hughes was at the forefront of Boris Johnson's Government's proposals on the reformation of the PRS under Michael Gove. We will likely see who Truss intends to replace Hughes with either today or tomorrow. Hughes was paramount to many issues the government has been aware of: he was involved in different briefs including homelessness, leasehold reform and building safety. Moreover, he had been working for the government's housing department (under its constantly changing names) since 2018, meaning he was extremely experienced and knowledgable about the housing sector.
Only a few weeks ago, Simon Clarke MP was appointed by Liz Truss as Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities. He will likely rue the departure of Hughes from the department, espcially when he is in dire need of proficient and skilled ministers possessing expertise and the capabilities of experienced workers as he is new to the sector.
“A change of Minister will add to the uncertainty the proposals within the renters’ reform white paper have created among the landlords our member agents represent, specifically the lack of protections against anti-social behaviour with the removal of Section 21 notices and the move away from fixed-term tenancies. We’re ready to work closely with whoever replaces Eddie Hughes to ensure that if the private rented sector is to be reformed, it is fair, balanced and workable, and goes ahead without any further delays.”: Timothy Douglas, Head of Policy and Campaigns for propertymark.
We here at Property Hub would like to hear your thoughts on Hughes's resignation; how significant was he to the property sector, and what will happen now that he has left? Will the DLUHC manage to achieve their goals in the PRS and elsewhere without the advice and support of experienced ministers such as Hughes and Jones?
If you have any questions, Please speak to Sachinkumar Gupta of Property Hub Ltd.