NOVEMBER 15 2021 – “WHAT IS HOMES ENGLAND FOR?” – PROCEEDINGS OF THE HOUSING, COMMUNITIES AND LOCAL GOVERNMENT COMMITTEE – INQUIRY – THE WORK OF HOMES ENGLAND

 

Monday 15 November 2021

Start times: 3.30pm (private) 4.00pm (public)

The Committee will question the witnesses on the work and impact of Homes England.

Meeting details

At 4.00pm: Oral evidence

Work Work of Homes England (Non-inquiry session)
 
Chair at Homes England

Peter Denton

CEO at Homes England

 

Location

Room 8, Palace of Westminster

How to attend

 

 

 

To: HCLG Committee

Are Homes England in serious breach of their duty to be responsible for the stewardship of public land?

Regarding the £3bn masterplan to build 10,000 houses West of Ifield [SA101] near Gatwick, West Sussex – on a golf course within the Parish of Ifield rich in ancient woodland and diverse wildlife – the local community of taxpayers believe Homes England are in serious breach of that duty.

Richard W. Symonds

The Ifield Society

 

“HOMES ENGLAND PLANS £3BN CRAWLEY GARDEN VILLAGE” – WEST OF IFIELD – ESTATES GAZETTE INTELLIGENCE [EGI] – EMMA ROSSER

HOMES ENGLAND BOSS SETS OUT PLANS FOR ORGANISATION FOLLOWING CRITICAL INTERNAL AUDIT – INSIDE HOUSING

The government’s housing agency has identified areas it must improve in and is implementing changes after an internal audit identified “significant weaknesses” with its governance and risk management, the new chief executive has told a group of MPs.

Homes England chief executive Peter Denton (left) and chair Peter Freeman (right) appeared before the HCLG Committee (picture: Parliament TV)

Homes England chief executive Peter Denton (left) and chair Peter Freeman (right) appeared before the HCLG Committee (picture: Parliament TV)
Sharelines

“No balls were actually dropped, but systems were not as good as they should be,” Homes England’s chair told MPs #UKhousing


Speaking at a Housing, Communities and Local Government (HCLG) Committee meeting, Peter Denton, chief executive of Homes England, set out a number of things the quango is doing to address the issues highlighted as part of this year’s annual internal audit into the organisation.

Published in July, the audit said the “overall assurance opinion” for Homes England was “limited”.

This means “there are significant weaknesses in the frameworks of governance, risk management and control such that it could be or could become inadequate and ineffective”, the report said. 

The audit identified a number of “key themes” for Homes England “to address to improve the control environment”.


READ MORE

Homes England director exits to take new Birmingham City Council roleHomes England director exits to take new Birmingham City Council role
Homes England vows to ‘improve diligence’ after connection between former chair and developer discoveredHomes England vows to ‘improve diligence’ after connection between former chair and developer discovered
Liverpool association appoints outgoing Homes England development chief as chairLiverpool association appoints outgoing Homes England development chief as chair

“These include areas such as management of the service chain for the Help to Buy loan book, effective prioritisation and targeting of the organisation’s transformation programme, improvements to risk management processes and culture, more effective data and decision-making processes, as well as effective use of organisational capacity and resource,” the report said. 

Speaking to MPs yesterday, Mr Denton said: “When I joined [Homes England] in August I was very acutely aware that on my to-do list this was probably at the top of things to focus on and I think that I was very grateful that quite a lot of work had already been done before me joining.” 

Work currently being undertaken by the organisation includes improvements to “governance and workforce planning”, alongside a “transformation project” to “change the predominantly old and inherited systems and processes”, he said. 

“I am comfortable that we have identified the areas that we need to improve upon and those are well underway already,” he added.

Peter Freeman, chair of Homes England, said the organisation’s board is “being advised much earlier” and “making more suggestions”. 

“I think we are trying to become a board where all issues that are strategic either in terms of programmes or in terms of our ability to manage programmes come to the board early,” he said.

“No balls were actually dropped, but systems were not as good as they should be, but I believe they will be in the next few months,” he added. 

The internal audit also identified that Homes England has been “hampered by instability at senior level”.

Mr Denton was asked whether this period of instability is now over, especially given the recent departure of chief land and development officer Stephen Kinsella

In response, Mr Denton said that “succession planning and empowerment of other people” meant there were “several choices” of people they were comfortable bringing in to fill Mr Kinsella’s role in an interim basis as they go through the process of recruiting for the permanent role.

 

LETTERS – NOVEMBER 17 2021

Dear Editor

Following last Monday’s Inquiry by the Committee for Housing, Communities and Local Government [HCLG], it is clear Homes England must start acting responsibly in their stewardship of public land, and start co-operating fully with local councils and communities – especially with regard to the West of Ifield.

Yours sincerely
Richard W. Symonds

The Ifield Society

TRANSCRIPT OF HCLG PROCEEDINGS

Chair: You are both very welcome. You have both been in your jobs for a relatively short period of time. I have a very general question to kick off with: what is Homes England for?

https://www.propertymark.co.uk/resource/homes-england-reviews-objectives-ahead-of-levelling-up-paper.html