Michael Gove orders cladding firms to foot the bill to fix buildings

Pay up or you’ll be banned: Michael Gove orders cladding firms to foot the bill for fixing fire-trap buildings

  • Michael Gove has demanded cladding manufacturers pay to fix unsafe buildings 
  • Housing Secretary warned he would do ‘whatever it takes’ to ensure they comply
  • Firm who refuse could be ‘pursued’ and banned from operating in Britain, he said

Michael Gove has demanded cladding and insulation manufacturers pay to fix unsafe buildings – or face being banned from the country.

The Housing Secretary wrote to the Construction Products Association warning he would do ‘whatever it takes’ to ensure they take responsibility.

He said he would prohibit those who refused from operating in Britain and ‘pursue’ firms that are ‘unwilling to do the right thing now’.

The minister said: ‘There is no future for those companies and directors who are not fully committed to upholding the safety of residents and fixing past wrongs.’

Mr Gove had demanded property developers fund changes to homes judged to be unsafe in the wake of the Grenfell Tower tragedy.

More than a hundred residents at The Decks, a six-building development in Runcorn, Cheshire, are set to be spared bills of up to £40,000 each

Now he has turned on firms that provided the raw materials which are now having to be replaced at great cost. It is the first time a minister has called on the manufacturers to play their role in making buildings safe.

It comes after a Daily Mail campaign urging justice for those trapped in unsafe buildings after the 2017 Grenfell blaze in west London which left 72 dead.

Evidence about the ‘culture and practices’ of major cladding and insulation manufacturers has been ‘extremely alarming’, he wrote.

They have until March to make a funding commitment to repair buildings rather than leave costs with ‘innocent leaseholders’.

Mr Gove wrote: ‘The cladding and insulation sector has an unquestionable responsibility for contributing to the remediation of their unsafe cladding products and must now come forwards with proposals to account for this.’

He said the total cost of removing unsafe cladding was now more than £9billion. He added that firms associated with the Grenfell Tower cladding had made millions in profit.

Giles Grover, of the End Our Cladding Scandal campaign, welcomed Mr Gove’s attempts to put pressure on developers to ‘provide real help to innocent leaseholders’, but added: ‘We need to see this actually lead to firm action.’

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