I read an article online recently in which ex-Construction Minister Nick Raynsford strongly criticised the Ministers who have followed him, principally because they do not spend enough time in post to fully understand the industry.

Construction News quoted Mr Raynsford as saying he felt “Ministerial appointments in recent years have been far, far too short.”

The former Labour MP for Greenwich and Woolwich held the role from May 1997 to June 2001, a total of four years and two months. Since then, the longest serving Minister has been Mark Prisk who held the job for two years and four months from May 2010 to September 2012.

In the last eighteen years, there have been a staggering sixteen different Ministers, the shortest serving being Lord Henley who held the post for just three months from October 2017.

Mr Raynsford went on to say he failed to see how his successors “who serve for increasingly short periods of time, can possibly hope to establish a relationship without the time to build up the contacts to understand the issues and explore what the industry needs.

“It is simply unrealistic to expect a Minister to get to grips with the industry, to meet the people, to understand the issues. It’s a very diverse, very complex industry.”