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TODAY'S OTHER NEWS

Fire safety issues affecting tower blocks ‘run far deeper’ than flammable cladding

Rendered insulation could be a bigger issue for scores of tower blocks with flammable cladding, according to Andrews Property Group. 

Almost three years on from the Grenfell tragedy, more than 20,000 households still live in flats wrapped in flammable cladding that encased Grenfell tower.

But while the flammable cladding that allowed fire to rapidly spread at the block in Kensington remains a serious concern, this issue could soon be surpassed by the problem of rendered insulation.

David Westgate, group chief executive at Andrews Property Group, said: “We have just learned that a housing block in the South West has failed the necessary fire safety tests because of rendered insulation and are currently informing the residents.

“Clearly this will be a source of huge distress to leaseholders and a cause of many issues, specifically securing mortgage finance and selling their homes.”

In advance of next week's Budget, Westgate is urging the Chancellor to ensure any government-backed fund to make all UK housing blocks safe following the Grenfell tragedy tackles the issue of rendered insulation as well as cladding. 

He added: “ACM (aluminium composite material) cladding, understandably following the Grenfell tragedy, has received the most attention over the past two and a half years but there is growing evidence that the fire safety issues affecting housing blocks around the UK run far deeper.

“The proactive approach of the Association of Residential Managing Agents in highlighting the equal dangers of HPL [high pressure laminate] cladding is welcome but more and more evidence is emerging that cladding is just a part of the problem rather than the whole problem.

“If the new Chancellor of the Exchequer is considering establishing a government-backed fund to make every apartment and housing block in this country safe then the fund needs to take into account rendered insulation as much as cladding.”

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    What is rendered insulation and what should we be installing in our walls when refurbishing or rebuilding?

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    grenfell was insulated by un decree

  • Paul Barrett

    I would imagine many different types of insulation etc are being utilised to comply with EPC regulations.

    It seems there are doubts as to the efficacy of some of these products.

    However there is the imperative of TIME which ain't standing still.
    LL need to have their rental properties able to meet EPC E standard at least or they aren't legally able to let the properties unless special circumstances pertain.
    Quite frankly in light of all the issues the EPC requirements should be suspended until LL and Freeholders can be sure the products they need to use to achieve EPC compliance are SAFE!!

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