Reassurance is­sued af­ter tower blaze

Macclesfield Express - - FRONT PAGE - KAREN BRITTON

AHOUSING as­so­ci­a­tion has moved to re­as­sure res­i­dents liv­ing in the town’s tower blocks af­ter a dev­as­tat­ing fire swept through high rise flats in London.

Tim Pin­der, chief ex­ec­u­tive at Peaks and Plains hous­ing as­so­ci­a­tion, has is­sued a let­ter to around 170 res­i­dents who live in Pen­nine Court and Range Court in Hurds­field, stat­ing that the blocks meet all nec­es­sary fire reg­u­la­tions and that the cladding used on the out­side of the build­ings is safe.

It comes af­ter the hor­rific blaze at the Gren­fell tower block in West London in the early hours of Wed­nes­day, June 14. Seventy-nine peo­ple were con­firmed dead or miss­ing pre­sumed dead in a state­ment by po­lice on Mon­day (June 19) but this num­ber was ex­pected to rise. Hun­dreds of peo­ple have been left home­less.

The blaze spread very quickly through the build­ing and con­cerns have been raised about the type of cladding used on the out­side of the build­ing.

Pen­nine Court and Range Court have been re­fur­bished us­ing clad- ding and res­i­dents posted con­cerns on Face­book, ask­ing for it to be prop­erly tested.

A spokesman for Peaks and Plains con­firmed that the make of cladding on Range and Pen­nine, which both house 92 homes, is Rock­panel, which is not the same as that used in the West London flats.

Tim Pin­der said in his let­ter to res­i­dents that cladding meets the high­est fire safety stan­dards.

He said: “We at Peaks and Plains were shocked and sad­dened by this aw­ful tragedy and our thoughts are very much with those whose fam­i­lies have been af­fected. I felt that some res­i­dents at Range and Pen­nine might also be feel­ing vul­ner­a­ble and dis­tressed. So I wanted to re­as­sure you that the fire safety fea­tures at Range and Pen­nine are reg­u­larly and ef­fec­tively checked and main­tained by ex­pe­ri­enced safety staff.

“Sharon, our fire safety of­fi­cer, has been in con­stant con­tact with Cheshire Fire and Res­cue to see what we can learn from the tragic London fire. They aren’t able to com­ment yet, but hope to in the next few days and we’ll let you have their com­ments when we re­ceive it.

“Our fire risk as­sess­ments and the rel­e­vant stan­dards for both blocks are com­pre­hen­sive and up to date. Cheshire Fire and Res­cue Ser­vice makes vis­its to fa­mil­iarise them­selves with the build­ing, es­cape routes etc. Another one is or­gan­ised for later this week.”

Google Street View

Pen­nine Court and Range Court, in­set Tim Pin­der

Lorna Richard­son is col­lect­ing gift cards for vic­tims of the Gren­fell Tower tragedy

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