The number of new houses has crept up from just above 137,000 in 2010 to not much above 150,000 last year.More than 300,000 houses a year were put up in the early Fifties when Harold Macmillan was housing minister.Compare all this with what has happened in recent times under Labour, the Coalition and now the Tories.
Even in Manchester, not normally regarded as a property hot-spot, it fell from 72 per cent in 2003 to 58 per cent this year.
The countless rows of neo-Tudor villas on the outskirts of most of our large towns are the happy harvest of those years.
After the war, first Labour and then Tory governments boosted house-building to even greater heights, though the majority of these new homes were council houses.
The reasons for the current state of affairs are complex.
They include near-stagnant wages in recent years, more onerous mortgage requirements and, above all, a shortage of adequate new housing, which is attributable to a wide range of factors, not least uncontrolled immigration.
I’d say that this crisis of declining home-ownership is one of the most serious issues Mrs May faces — more serious than Trident renewal or whether or not we should build new nuclear power stations with French and Chinese money and know-how.He meant that people need to have a stake in modern society if they are not to feel alienated or left behind.For millions of them there is no prospect other than paying rent to a private landlord or housing association for as far ahead as the eye can see.Expectations taken for granted by their parents and grandparents have been shattered.It was an idea taken up with enthusiasm by the Tory-dominated National Government of the Thirties.It encouraged the private sector to build hundreds of thousands of new houses — 280,000 of them in 1935-36 alone.