Simon clarke

Tories clash over planning applications

Ding, ding, ding! In the blue corner, it’s Joy Morrissey, government whip and the Tory member for Beaconsfield. And, er, in the other blue corner, it’s Simon Clarke, fellow Conservative MP and representative for Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland. The cause of today’s metaphorical bout? Planning and the thorny issue of where to build much-needed new homes. Conservative MPs have often faced accusations of talking a good game on such issues, only to then turn around and block developments when they occur in or around their own local patch. Recent examples could include Maria Miller and Theresa Villiers, both of whom backed an amendment this month to scrap housing targets