The construction portfolio stays with minister for skills Nick Boles
Nick Boles will continue as construction minister in David Cameron’s new government, civil servants have confirmed.
Boles inherited the construction brief in Cameron’s last reshuffle in August 2014, when he was appointed skills minister - a role split between the departments of business, innovation and skills and the education department.
Following Cameron’s reshuffle last week, the departments were initially unable to confirm Boles’ portfolio responsibilities, but today a spokesperson for the business department said his role had finally been confirmed, with his responsiblities left unchanged.
Boles’ skills brief covers apprenticeships policy, putting him at the forefront of the government’s drive to create three million new apprenticeships by 2020, funded from £1bn of welfare spending cuts.
His construction brief covers industrial policy for the sector. Boles also has responsibility for the retail and rail business sectors.
Prior to last August, the MP for Grantham and Stamford had been planning minister, and memorably said “shoot me if I’m planning minister after the next election”. Luckily for him he isn’t.
The transport department also confirmed the portfolios allocated to its ministerial team.
Transport secretary Patrick McLoughlin has overall responsibility for HS2, alongside overall transport strategy.
Junior minister Robert Goodwill also shares responsibility for HS2 with McLoughlin, and also takes on the aviation brief.
Claire Perry takes on rail infrastructure and Network Rail, while Andrew Jones is responsible for roads and Highways England.