Private Tower Blocks: Removal of Cladding

Part of Statutory Instruments (Joint Committee) – in the House of Commons at 7:52 pm on 29th April 2019.

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Photo of Kit Malthouse Kit Malthouse Minister of State (Housing, Communities and Local Government) 7:52 pm, 29th April 2019

The hon. Gentleman is quite right to press me, as is my hon. Friend Kevin Hollinrake. I am not able to say tonight what specific measures are likely, but I am hopeful that we will be able to do so shortly.

We have worked closely with local authorities and fire and rescue services to ensure that interim safety measures are in place, so that residents are safe in their beds tonight. The hon. Member for Bethnal Green and Bow referred to my wanting reassurance that people are safe tonight. In fact, I have ordered a review of all those arrangements to take place as soon as possible, so that I can reassure myself that that is still the case.

Local authorities have the power to enforce these improvements if building owners do not take action. We are backing local authorities to take action where buildings owners refuse to remediate, including with financial support where it is necessary for the local authority to carry out emergency remedial work. Where financial support is made available, the relevant local authorities will attempt to recover the costs from the building owner.