ARCHITECT AND TV presenter George Clarke has called on the public sector to build more homes to solve the housing crisis.
Clarke, who has presented housing and property shows for Channel 4 and Channel 5, made the appeal as he was unveiled as Visiting Professor in Architecture and Design at Birmingham City University.
The role will include making regular visits to the University to give lectures, to work with students and to offer advice.
At the event to mark his appointment, Clarke spoke about his passion for affordable homes, the challenges posed by the UK’s housing crisis and the need to modernise the industry.
Clarke said: “I recently launched the show ‘the Council House Scandal’ because I’ve been passionate about affordable housing for more than 15 years.
“This show is the best thing I’ve made. We’re in the thick of the worst housing crisis this country has ever seen and the only way to get out of it is for the state to start building again.
“We’ve tried the private sector and it hasn’t worked, so it’s time for the state to step in, and we know that councils want to start building again.
“I was brought up on a council estate. It was a new town with 80,000 people living there. It had the best architects, builders, planners, and it was a fantastic place. Right to buy has caused council housing and affordable public housing to collapse.”
Right to Buy was abolished in Scotland in 2016 and Wales in early 2019 but remains in place in England and Northern Ireland.
Professor Julian Beer, Deputy Vice-Chancellor at Birmingham City University, said: “George has a real vision to transform housing in this country and improve the lives of people right across the UK, and it is this drive and ambition which makes this appointment so exciting.
“George’s role here, will not just benefit the staff and students at the University, but will also have an impact on the people of the West Midlands and far beyond.”