Latest Premier House scheme shows extent of government cladding failures
A new scheme announced by Betterpride, owners of Premier House in Edgware, would heighten the building by three floors in order to pay for work to remove dangerous Aluminium Composite Material (ACM) cladding on the exterior of the building. Labour London Assembly Member for Barnet and Camden Andrew Dismore said that this was not an acceptable way of remediating cladding problems, and showed that the Government was not on top of the issue.
Premier House has had a long and troubled history, starting in 2014 when 160 businesses were forced to leave the former office block when its then owners decided to use deregulated permitted development rules to turn the block into residential units. As part of the refurbishment, ACM cladding, similar to the type used in Grenfell Tower, was installed.
Mr Dismore said:
‘I have been raising the remediation of cladding with the Mayor for some time, as chair of the London Assembly Fire, Resilience and Emergency Planning Committee. Whilst the mayor is receptive to what needs to be done, the Government has failed miserably to respond to the scale of the problem. Nearly four years on from the horror of Grenfell, the Government, who made big promises at the time, have not delivered. They are moving far too slowly on getting the private sector to remove dangerous cladding, and have offered inadequate finance.’
‘Adding additional storeys to generate capital to fix the cladding is not an acceptable solution – it will create disruption to existing residents of the block, as well as adding yet more density and height to an already crowded and tall building.’
Labour London Assembly candidate Anne Clarke added:
‘Residents of Premier House deserve better than this. The cladding should have been removed years ago, as a clear risk to the safety on inhabitants. I have been working with a number of residents across Hendon who are struggling with the cost of waking watches, the anxiety of not feeling safe and the stress of not being able to sell their homes. The Government must take a lead on dealing with dangerous cladding and put serious resources into remediation. It ought to be a national priority.’
- Andrew Dismore is the Labour London Assembly Member for Barnet and Camden
- Anne Clarke is Labour London Assembly candidate for Barnet and Camden