Grenfell campaigners call for cladding removal deadline

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image captionThe Grenfell Tower Inquiry has been put on hold due to the Covid-19 outbreak

Grenfell campaigners are urging the government to commit to a deadline to remove all flammable cladding.

It comes just days before the third anniversary of the fire in west London that killed 72 people.

The Justice4Grenfell group is asking people to write to their MP demanding a time limit and a detailed plan for how and when cladding will be removed.

The government says it "has been working tirelessly" with councils to remove unsafe cladding.

Lockdown urgency

Last year, then communities secretary James Brokenshire said he expected the removal of all unsafe cladding by this month, but thousands of homes are still covered in aluminium composite material (ACM) deemed to be dangerous.

Justice4Grenfell spokeswoman Yvette Williams said more than 23,000 homes in the UK were still covered in "Grenfell-style cladding".

"At a time when people are urged to stay in their homes more, safety is paramount," she added.

"For the people affected there is still no clear understanding of the time-frame to have these panels removed.

"We believe the Government needs to act with urgency and set clear timings for completion and take accountability for an expedient removal."

This Sunday churches across the city will ring their bells 72 times in remembrance of the victims three years on.

St Paul's Cathedral, Westminster Abbey and Southwark Cathedral will join Grenfell's parish church, St Clement Notting Dale, at 18:00 BST at the invitation of the Bishop of Kensington, the Rt Rev Graham Tomlin.

In response to Justice4Grenfell's campaign a government spokesman said the safety of residents "is a top priority".

"We are providing £1.6bn for the removal and replacement of unsafe cladding from high-rise buildings and are bringing forward the biggest legislative changes in a generation to provide further enforcement powers against those who do not comply with the law, and ensuring that residents' safety is at the heart of the construction process."

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