Further Statement On Our Response To The Grenfell Fire
We are committed to ensuring that the homes we provide to our residents are safe and meet regulatory standards including those on fire safety. Following the tragic Grenfell Fire, we have sought to provide reassurance and support to our residents whilst carefully following Government advice in relation to the need to review all our tall buildings and, where necessary, carry out testing. We have been working with the Government, our local Borough partners and the London Fire Brigade, as our primary authority partner, throughout this period.
We have now completed our review of all our tall buildings and were able to confirm that all of our fire risk assessments for these buildings were both up to date and that all actions are complete. We have reviewed the cladding type on all of our tall buildings and submitted the required information to the Department of Communities and Local Government ("DCLG").
This review established that we have one development where, although the main cladding to the scheme is Porcelain Stone and Ceramic Mosaic cladding which is not of the type used at Grenfell Tower, there are bands of cladding between the main cladding panels which require additional testing in line with DCLG requirements.
Residents living in this scheme have been notified in writing that this additional testing is being carried out and precautionary safety measures have been put in place including:
- Implementation of fire patrols of the scheme to reassure residents
- Reminding all residents at the scheme of our policies around the use of balconies and communal areas and the requirement for all such areas to be kept clear of all obstructions at all times
- Removal of all flammable materials from balconies and reminder that barbecues are not permitted on balconies or in communal areas
- Additional regular inspections of all communal areas by our staff and Health and Safety consultants to ensure that any items left in stairways and lobby areas are removed in line with our fire safety policy
During this period, we have continued our partnership working with the London Fire Brigade to ensure they are satisfied with the steps we are taking.
Our teams have been on hand to support residents throughout; in person, on the telephone and online. I would like to take this opportunity to thank our residents for their support and co-operation during what we understand is a difficult and worrying time for many of them. We will continue to update residents throughout this period and stand ready to take any remedial action that is identified as being necessary as a result of these additional tests.
Our teams continue to make fire safety advice available to all residents through our website, through social media and through individual correspondence with residents in response to queries received. A high volume of enquiries continue to be received following the fire and our teams are responding to these, providing information and assurance to residents.
All residents are reminded to ensure they understand the fire safety guidance that is in place for their home and to keep all stairways and common areas free from rubbish or other obstructions. Barbecues are not permitted on balconies at any of our schemes. If residents have any queries regarding fire safety they should contact our housing team on 0300 303 2500.
As we learn more about the causes of the devastating fire at Grenfell Tower, we remain alert to further advice from the DCLG and the London Fire Brigade and will implement their recommendations. We will update our residents as further advice is received, to ensure that we are doing everything we can to ensure their continued safety.