Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

£4.5m spent on Fife tower blocks since Grenfell

Councillor Judy Hamilton checks on progress at Forth View flats in Kirkcaldy Image copyright Fife Council
Image caption Councillor Judy Hamilton checks on progress at Forth View flats in Kirkcaldy

At least £4.5m has been spent improving high rise flats in Fife since the Grenfell disaster two years ago.

In June 2017, a fire broke out in the 24-storey Grenfell Tower block of flats in West London, causing 72 deaths.

A tower block review group involving Scottish Fire and Rescue Service has been working since the tragedy to enhance the safety of Fife's towers.

Work has included new doors, signs, ventilation improvements, fire alarms and carbon monoxide detectors.

Image caption There were 72 deaths in the Grenfell Tower fire

John Mills, Fife Council's head of housing, said: "Grenfell was an unspeakable tragedy and we will never forget the lives lost and the terrible impact it had.

"Here in Fife we've been working with our tenants to reassure them that they are safe in their homes and backed that up with rigorous testing and inspections to underline the safety of the materials used to clad our buildings.

"Our buildings are safe and meet current Building Standards requirements in Scotland.

"However we are not complacent in relation to the need for effective fire safety and we are working to enhance standards beyond the current building standards requirements.

"We've visited all of our tenants and residents to offer face to face advice and discussions about any concerns and it's been heartening to hear that people are reassured."

The council has also consulted tenants on how caretaker support in multi-storey flats can be improved. A report is expected later this year on how that work will be taken forward.

Judy Hamilton, chairwoman of Fife council's community and housing services committee, said: "I very much welcome this investment in our high-rise blocks of flats immediately after the Grenfell tragedy.

"Following the horror of Grenfell, we pulled together a team and worked closely with tenants and residents in each tower block to improve standards and to reassure them that our buildings meet all the current standards.

"Their safety and security has been my highest priority and I would like to thank staff across the council, and Scottish Fire & Rescue for their swift response.

"A public inquiry into the Grenfell tragedy is ongoing and we stand ready to implement its findings, to ensure the highest standards in our multi-storey flats for our tenants and residents."

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