Today (10 January) the Secretary for State for Housing, Communities and Local Government made a statement about cladding. This statement comes more than four years after the horrific Grenfell Tower fire which saw 72 people die and many more injured.
It is unbelievable that we’ve had to wait for more than four years to see any progress on the cladding scandal that led to the horrific Grenfell tragedy. Today’s announcement will be welcomed by some tenants but it leaves many questions unanswered. And with this Government’s track record in this area and their failure to deliver a comprehensive plan, people will not be holding their breath for them to deliver what they’re promising.
There are still many questions that the Government needs to answer, including what is their plan to resolve the backlog in Building Safety fund applications. How will they persuade developers to do the right thing and stop freeholders passing on the costs to residents. And what is their plan to rectify non-cladding related defects that pose fire risks such as the need for firebreakers that blight many residents.
Today’s statement is a start, but the Government have a long way to go if they are to protect all leaseholders, in law, from all historic defects. That must be their ultimate goal.