Number of buildings with Grenfell-style cladding systems rises as 10 new blocks discovered

The number of buildings with Grenfell-style cladding awaiting remediation work has risen by one, after 10 further buildings with the deadly material were found last month. 

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Skyline building in Leeds, one of many blocks with unsafe cladding (picture: Google Street View)
Skyline building in Leeds, one of many blocks with unsafe cladding (picture: Google Street View)
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Number of buildings with Grenfell-style cladding systems rises as 10 new blocks discovered #ukhousing

The number of buildings with Grenfell-style cladding awaiting remediation work has risen by one, after 10 further buildings with the deadly material were found last month #ukhousing

The latest figures released today show 319 of 446 buildings with aluminium composite material cladding are still awaiting remediation, some 30 months on from the fire in west London.

All of the new 10 blocks were privately owned and eclipsed the completion of work on nine blocks during the month – meaning the total number of blocks awaiting completion is one higher than the 318 recorded in October.


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Former housing secretary James Brokenshire had promised “all but a handful” of affected social housing blocks would be complete by the end of the year – but 93 of 159 are still outstanding.

The deadline for private blocks is June, but just 19 of the 194 have completed with 148 yet to start.

Only two blocks have so far gone through the process of applying for a government fund of £200m announced in the summer to help speed up the work in the private sector – with only one currently in a position to actually draw down the cash.

The blocks which still have cladding contain an estimated 23,700 flats – meaning upwards of 50,000 people are likely to still live in buildings with Grenfell-style cladding on the walls.

In October, an expert witness to the Grenfell Tower Inquiry warned these buildings may still be unsafe to occupy – despite reassurances from ministers about interim measures.

The Conservative manifesto contained no new promises for cladding removal, beyond a loose commitment to “support” residents of affected blocks.

There are thought to be thousands – perhaps tens of thousands – of medium-rise towers and buildings with other forms of dangerous cladding and remediation that are currently excluded from the official Building Safety Programme.

The affected blocks are spread across the country, but are primarily concentrated in London and the North West – particularly Greater Manchester.

Inside Housing co-founded the End Our Cladding Scandal campaign alongside residents of affected blocks to call for the government to go further on cladding removal.

Its key demands are a national taskforce to take control of the inspection and remediation process and the establishment of a ‘building safety fund’ to help pay for the work.

This campaign, supported by the Grenfell United group of survivors, was adopted into the Labour manifesto alongside a promise to pass primary legislation to force building owners to act.

A spokesperson for the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government said: “Residents’ safety remains our priority and it’s reassuring to see almost all high-rise residential buildings with unsafe ACM cladding have remediation plans in place, underway or completed.

“The government is committed to ensuring that residents are safe in their homes, now and in the future, and that’s why we are fully funding the removal of unsafe ACM cladding from high-rise social and private residential properties.”

 

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