Gavin Barwell and Ben Gummer take key junior minister roles
Theresa May has completed appointing her first cabinet with scores of junior minister appointments over the weekend, including Croydon Central MP Gavin Barwell as housing and planning minister and minister for London.
Barwell (pictured, top) said he was “hugely honoured” and was looking forward to “working with councils, housing associations, developers and investors to ensure we build the homes people need and deserve, and to working with the Mayor of London to ensure the continued success of our wonderful, diverse capital - and that all Londoners share in it”.
He will report to overall communities secretary Sajid Javid. The former housing minister Brandon Lewis has been moved to the Home Office, where he has been made police minister.
Meanwhile, the Cabinet Office has confirmed that its new minister Ben Gummer (pictured, bottom) will oversee implementation of the government’s construction strategy, including procurement, cost-cutting and BIM. He will also oversee the work of the government’s buying arm, the Crown Commercial Service.
The government earlier this year committed to saving £1.7bn from the cost of public construction projects this parliament in an updated construction strategy.
The newly-created Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy department - led by secretary of state Greg Clark - said it was yet to determine which of its ministerial team will have responsibility for construction, apprentices, energy and energy efficiency. The team includes Nick Hurd, Baroness Nevill-Rolfe, Jo Johnson and Margot James.
Elsewhere, May retained Lord O’Neill as the government’s ‘infrastructure tsar’ at the Treasury.
O’Neill - whose official title is commercial secretary - was instrumental under Osborne in driving forward infrastructure policy, including launching the National Infrastructure Delivery Plan.
O’Neill is a former Goldman Sachs boss and the economist credited with creating the term “BRICs” to describe the emerging market powerhouse economies of Brazil, Russia, India and China.
At transport, Paul Maynard has been named rail minister following the resignation of Claire Perry.
Commenting on Barwell’s appointment, David Orr, chief executive of the National Housing Federation, said: “Housing associations look forward to working with him in partnership to tackle the country’s housing deficit.
“The priority now must be to ensure the supply of new homes does not falter and housing associations are well placed to step in and keep Britain building.”