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Wed May 12 2021

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Construction industry waves bye-bye to another disappearing minister

9 Jun 17 Gavin Barwell, minister of state for housing, planning and construction, has lost his parliamentary seat at the 2017 general election.

Gavin Barwell
Gavin Barwell

Gavin Barwell was one of numerous high profile casualties of the election, along with former SNP leader Alex Salmond and former deputy prime minister Nick Clegg. The Conservatives lost their majority and the nation returned a hung parliament.

Mr Barwell was first elected MP for Croydon Central in 2010, retained his seat in 2015 with a slim majority of just165 but lost out this time to Labour’s Sarah Jones by more than 5,000 votes.

Bar the unlikely event of him being elevated to the Lords by whoever forms the next government and keeping his ministerial office, Mr Barwell’s ejection means that the UK is now set for its sixth housing and construction minister in seven years.

Gavin Barwell was appointed minister of state at the Department for Communities & Local Government less than a year ago, in July 2016. His greatest achievement was being in office for the publication of the February 2017 house-building white paper, Fixing our broken housing market, but did not have much time to do any actual fixing. However, he appears to have been broadly regarded as energetic and enthusiastic.

His equally transient predecessors in that office since 2010 were:

  • Grant Shapps, 2010-2012
  • Mark Prisk, September 2012 to October 2013
  • Kris Hopkins, October 2013 to July 2014
  • Brandon Lewis, July 2014 to July 2016.

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