HBF Beyond Barker report

4 Apr, 2024

HBF Beyond Barker report

The ‘Beyond Barker’ report marks the twentieth anniversary of Kate Barker’s Review of Housing Supply, published in 2004.

The Review was commissioned by the Government to provide a comprehensive understanding of the issues underlying a lack of housing supply, and triggered a range of planning reforms and responses from the industry.

HBF’s report assesses the progress made in implementing the recommendations of the Review; outlines how the findings of the Barker Review in 2004 still accurately describe the housing market today; and estimates the housing shortfall that has developed over the past two decades since the Review’s publication. It also provides several recommendations for policymakers, building on the issues Barker identified.

The research shows that:

  • England would have 2 million more homes today if the Barker Review’s most ambitious scenario for increasing housing supply had been achieved.
  • This shortfall is equivalent to the entire housing stock of Ireland, or the number of homes in the urban areas of Manchester and Birmingham combined.
  • Looking at Barker’s central housing supply scenario (requiring 240,000 homes to be built a year), England has still fallen 900,000 homes short of the total number needed to make the market more affordable over the past 20 years.
  • Only 11 of the 36 recommendations of the Barker Review are currently in place – with a further 10 having only been partially implemented. 5 recommendations were implemented and then reversed.
  • The recent changes to the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) undermined progress in implementing 3 of the Barker Review’s recommendations - those relating to targets, the allocation of land by local authorities, and the Green Belt.
  • Most indicators of housing affordability have worsened over the past twenty years since the Review’s publication.

The report also contains a foreword from Dame Kate Barker reflecting on the Review’s legacy and the challenges that remain, twenty years on. Dame Barker warns in her foreword that ‘the prospect of 300,000 new homes a year in England seems as far off today as it did in 2004’. 

HBF Report - Beyond Barker

- 1.7 MB


Filed under