Fire safety in Westminster

Fire safety in Westminster

We understand that you have questions about your building following the fire at Grenfell Tower so we have put together some frequently asked questions based on those you have already asked us to help answer them.

Update on fire safety in Westminster properties managed by CityWest Homes  (21 July 2017)

CityWest Homes and Westminster City Council are committed to ensuring your safety. Below is an update on the progress we have made and to reassure you that we are working hard to make you even safer.

You will remember we mentioned that more detailed London Fire Brigade inspections were taking place, they have now completed this work and said: “Inspecting officers have visited six towers in the Little Venice Estate in Westminster and are satisfied that CityWest Homes who are responsible for fire safety in these buildings are putting in place appropriate fire safety measures to mitigate the risks from fire. CityWest Homes are responsible for ensuring the building remains safe and keeping residents informed of any changes to the building and what they need to do in the event of a fire.” We will share any further London Fire Brigade updates with you as and when we have them.

In our last update we wrote about the ongoing checks to the outer cladding and that the independent review provided further confirmation that our records are correct and that the cladding system was certified by building control in line with building regulations.

We believe it is important that we continue to carry out further checks to confirm the outer cladding was installed as designed and as per our records.

In addition, we said that we will be removing the decking on balconies. This work has begun on a couple of empty properties this week, to assess the implications and possible alternative options associated with its removal. We want to ensure that the balcony can still be used by you, so it is important that the step down and surface which is exposed does not represent a risk, such as of trips and slips or any other issues.

A wider programme of removal of the decking will be confirmed next week, together with information on what alternative system(s) could replace the decking in the future.

Sprinklers

Following the announcement that we will fit sprinklers in all of our existing buildings above 30 metres, we are now in the process of appointing independent specialists to determine the right type of sprinkler systems and the best way to install them. We want to ensure the system works effectively in your block and make sure there is minimal disruption to you during installation. We are looking to appoint a company to conduct this work in the coming week and hoping to have a full assessment ready within 6-8 weeks, we will update you on next steps when we have them.

In addition to all of the actions we are undertaking, we again ask that you remain vigilant and take the following steps to ensure your safety:

• Keep corridors free of any obstruction
• Place any large items of rubbish in metal bins located away from the building
• Do not use BBQs on roofs, balconies (including private balconies) and in communal gardens as this is strictly prohibited.

To ensure your safety and the safety of others in your building, we ask you to continue to be mindful and do everything you can to prevent fire risks in your home.

How can I find out more?

We know you will have some questions that you would like answered and we will be only too happy to do so. We will continue to update this page of our website with information. If you have further questions, you can email info@cwh.org.uk.

We will be contacting our vulnerable residents to make sure they have this information and can answer any questions they might have.

We will also be holding surgeries to discuss detailed plans with the residents of Little Venice and to answer any questions or concerns they may have.

Initial sessions will visit all Little Venice blocks on the following dates and times. If you cannot make the session for your block but can make another of the sessions please do feel free to turn up there, or alternatively, you can book an individual visit to your home by talking to a member of staff in the estate office

 

Tuesday
25/07/17

Wednesday
26/07/17
Thursday
27/07/17

 

Friday
28/07/17

 

Brinklow House 10am - 12pm      
Gaydon House 2-4pm      
Oversley House   10am-12pm    
Polesworth House   2pm-4pm    
Princethorpe House     10am-12pm  
Wilmcote House     2-4pm  
Warwick Community Hall and local office   Late opening
5-6.30pm
  9-11am

We would like to thank you for your patience during this difficult time and we look forward to working with you on these important matters.

Jonathan Cowie
Chief Executive

 

View our latest letter sent to residents living in the six towers at Little Venice here.

View our latest letter sent to residents living in tower blocks  here.

You can also visit the following for fire safety advice: www.cwh.org.uk/fire-safety   

Further advice and information is available on the London Fire Brigade website, specifically for people who live in flats and maisonettes at www.london-fire.gov.uk/know-the-plan.asp
 

Emergency number

If you are concerned about someone following the Grenfell Tower fire, please call The Metropolitan Police Casualty Bureau on 0800 096 1233.

https://www.met.police.uk/news/major-incident-kensington-north/

London Fire Brigade updates

The latest news on the Grenfell Tower fire is available from the London Fire Brigade website.

http://www.london-fire.gov.uk/latestincidents.asp

Donations

The Kensington and Chelsea Foundation has launched a Grenfell Tower appeal for those affected by the fire. Find out more on the Kensington and Chelsea Foundation website.

https://thekandcfoundation.com/donate/

Kensington and Chelsea Council thanks all those who have made generous donations of food, clothing and other items. They ask people to hold off any further donations as they have been inundated with useful items.

https://www.rbkc.gov.uk/newsroom/all-council-statements/fire-grenfell-tower