Laura Sharman 16 June 2017

Safety review launched into hundreds of tower blocks

The Government has ordered an emergency review into tower blocks following the devastating fire at Grenfell Tower in London.

In response to the fire, the Government has also activated the Bellwin scheme to provide financial assistance to local authorities helping affected residents and businesses.

Local government minister, Sajid Javid, said he has already asked councils to provide details of how many similar tower blocks they have in their area.

However, he admitted the Government does not know how many buildings have been fitted with the same cladding as Grenfell Tower.

Mr Javid said: ‘As the prime minister has been clear, the Government stands ready to help in anyway possible. We’re determined to stand squarely behind the affected communities.

‘Funding through the Bellwin scheme will help councils support the community to get back on their feet.’

Housing minister Alok Sharma said he would be working with the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea to guarantee all residents from Grenfell Tower will be rehoused in the local area.

Jeremy Corbyn, leader of the Labour Party, said empty properties in the borough should be used to help re-home residents. He added: 'Some hard questions need to be answered. It cannot be right that in the 21st century a fire like this happens.

'It’s the responsibility of Government to tell us why the lessons of Camberwell, Southampton and Shepherds Bush have not been learned.'

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