Cladding used on Grenfell Tower may have been banned under UK building regulations

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Image © Natalie Oxford

Two ministers have suggested the cladding used to renovate Grenfell Tower could have been prohibited under building regulations in the UK

Since the tragic fire at Grenfell Tower, London there has been much speculation over the external cladding used on the outside of the building. The high rise tower block, which caught fire on 14 June, was renovated in 2016 at a cost of £8.7m. Now, ministers are suggesting the exterior cladding put up during this process could have been banned under UK building regulations.

Trade Minister Greg Hands and Chancellor Philip Hammond both suggested this could be the case during separate TV appearances. However, the former urged for caution until the outcome of official investigations are known.

Speaking to Sky News, Hands said: “My understanding is that the cladding that was reported wasn’t in accordance with U.K. building regulations.”

He added: “We need to find out precisely what cladding was used and how it was attached.”

He said an “urgent inspection” of around 2,500 similar tower blocks across the country was taking place to ensure safety.

Evidence must be protected

The building, which stands 24-storeys and housed up to 600 people in 120 apartments, burnt very quickly, leading experts to raise concerns about the construction.

Labour Party lawmaker David Lammy said the government and police need to act quickly to protect evidence relating to the renovation.

“The prime minister needs to act immediately to ensure that all evidence is protected so that everyone culpable for what happened at Grenfell Tower is held to account and feels the full force of the law,” he said.

“When the truth comes out about this tragedy, we may find that there is blood on the hands of a number of organizations.”

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