Recession-hit developers are unlikely to build enough houses in the Thames Gateway to meet the government’s target of 160,000 new homes by 2016, the head of a new national regeneration agency indicated.

Sir Bob Kerslake, chief executive of the Homes and Communities Agency, which is due to be launched on Monday, said there should be a 'stock take' of the time needed to achieve the scale of housebuilding planned in the area – Europe’s biggest regeneration project.

Sir Bob told the Financial Times: 'These were clearly ambitious targets at the beginning and the market conditions have made them even more ambitious.

'It’s important to do a bit of a stock take about those targets in the light of where we are now.

'I personally think the Gateway is capable of creating that level of jobs and housing, but what we need to look at is whether that might happen over a longer timescale.'

Financial Times