Grenfell survivors beam powerful messages onto unsafe towers to mark 2nd anniversary of the tragedy

Powerful messages have been beamed onto unsafe tower blocks across the country two years on from the tragic Grenfell Tower fire.

On 14th June 2017 72 people were killed after flames were able to spread quickly through a tower block in West London due to cladding made from highly flammable aluminium composite material (ACM).

In the aftermath it emerged that 433 other high-rise residential and publicly owned buildings had the same kind of cladding.

Firefighters today warned that we risk “sleepwalking into another catastrophic loss of life” two years on from the disaster, raising concerns over funding cuts that have left them unable to prepare for similar fires in future.

The Fire Brigades Union said: “In the time since the fire, the government’s facile approach has utterly failed all those involved that night and the thousands of people who are at risk across the country.

“After two years, the Grenfell Tower Inquiry has delivered no answers and we are no closer to tackling any of the underlying causes of the tragedy.

“Countless homes are still wrapped in flammable materials, while warnings from tenants about risks to their safety go ignored. Fire and rescue services are, in the face of continued cuts, unable to prepare for a similar incident, with no national structures or coordination from government.

“As things stand, we risk sleepwalking into another catastrophic loss of life. We demand urgent action from government to ensure that the events of Grenfell Tower can never happen again.”

Action group Grenfell United also used the anniversary to highlight government inaction, with survivors projecting warning messages onto several buildings they believe are still unsafe.

The messages were seen on blocks in Manchester, Newcastle and London in a bid to “shine the spotlight” on fire safety issues that still exist in those towers.

The group said: “People (are still) going to bed at night in buildings wrapped in dangerous cladding, with no sprinklers and fire doors not fit for purpose.

“Grenfell United are calling on the public to #DemandChange by joining the campaign at: support.grenfellunited.org”.

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1 Response

  1. Red Robbo

    “… while warnings from tenants about risks to their safety go ignored. ”

    Such disdain is common:
    ‘A group of homeless people were kicked out of public tunnels next to the Houses of Parliament. One man claimed he was told by a police officer that an MP had complained about their presence. Two of the men who had been sleeping in the tunnels to keep warm told the Independent that Metropolitan Police officers ejecting them had cited section four of the Vagrancy Act 1824 – the 19th-century law which criminalises rough sleeping and begging. One man said a police officer had also mentioned clearing the tunnels, which connect Westminster Tube station to an entrance to parliament, “so the MPs can get to work”’ (independent.co.uk, 26 March).

    The “problem” of homelessness is not new and exits worldwide. In their book The Bleak Age: England 1800-1850 (1934) the Hammonds record this description of homes in Manchester in the 1840s: “They are built back to back; without ventilation or drainage; and, like a honeycomb, every particle of space is occupied. Double rows of these house form courts, with, perhaps, a pump at one end and a privy at the other, common to the occupants of about twenty houses.” News of a “homeless community found living in dark, squalid tunnels… under the streets of Manchester” (The Sun, 2 May, 2017) should come as no surprise.

    The “problem” of growing homelessness and those enduring sub-standard accommodation exists alongside thousands of unoccupied properties in London and Manchester, and over 200,000 in England.

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