To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, how many people in his Department in (a) 2010 and (b) 2017 (i) had expertise in cladding systems, (ii) were chartered structural engineers and (iii) were fire experts working in policy teams advising on cladding and external wall insulation systems.
In 2010, two members of staff had specific expertise in fire safety matters. Five members of staff had specific expertise in cladding and external wall insulation.
Currently, three members of staff have expertise related to aspects of cladding and external wall insulation systems, including one member of staff who has specific fire safety expertise and one member of staff who is a chartered structural engineer.
In both 2010 and 2017 (and all years between), DCLG has had a structural engineering support contract in place to supply specialist structural engineering advice. This contract could provide any additional experienced chartered engineers as required.
The independent expert panel will provide advice to the government on any immediate measures needed to make buildings safe following the Grenfell Tower fire.