News

Number of private high-rises with flammable cladding soars

The number of private high-rise blocks believed to be fitted with Grenfell-style cladding has soared following studies of over 6,000 buildings.

 

Latest estimates from The Government reveal there are now more private tower blocks of 18 storeys or more in need of remediation, than social housing blocks.

 

The figure is more than double than believed at risk in May. Of the 297 high-rise buildings expected to fail tests, the private owners of three-quarters of these buildings have failed to notify The Government of plans to remediate, despite warnings.

 

The Government also admitted that this figure could rise further because the cladding status of another 170 private sector residential buildings is still to be confirmed.

 

Housing Secretary James Brokenshire has recently unveiled fresh measures including a new expert taskforce, aimed to drive forward swifter action by building owners to remove potentially unsafe cladding.

 

For the majority of these remaining 170 buildings, enforcement notices have now been issued to get information on building construction from the owners.

 

Based on current evidence and the identification rate to date, The Government expects 3-5% of the remaining buildings to have similar ACM cladding systems to those which have failed large scale system tests. The Government have also said that only 19 buildings so far have had their dangerous cladding replaced. This leaves tens of thousands of people who are living in these buildings at risk.

 

Brokenshire said

 

“I have been clear that leaseholders should be protected from unfair costs and we expect the industry to do the right thing. If they don’t, I will continue to explore other routes and I am not ruling anything out.”

 

He added that while remediation work has begun on 21 of these private buildings, of which 4 have been completed, The Government is determined to accelerate the pace of the work.