Hackitt: Government to consult on combustible cladding ban
The government is to consult on banning the use of combustible materials in cladding systems on high-rise residential buildings, it has announced.
The news came as part of housing secretary James Brokenshire's response to the publication of Dame Judith Hackitt's final report examining Building Regulations and fire safety.
The Hackitt Review stopped short of recommending a ban on combustible cladding materials, despite calls from architects, construction firms and victims of the Grenfell Tower disaster to do so.
Brokenshire welcomed the Hackitt Review and said he supported Hackitt's calls for major reform.
In addition to its decision to consult on banning combustible cladding, he said the government was consulting on restricting or banning the use of "desktop studies" to assess cladding systems. The consultation closes on 25 May.
He added that the government was working to clarify Building Regulations fire safety guidance, which will be published for consultation in July.
Brokenshire also announced that he was issuing a directive to all local authorities to pay "particular regard" to cladding-related issues when reviewing housing in their area.
Remediation work has started on two thirds of buildings with unsafe cladding in the social housing sector.
However, he said it was “outrageous” that some private sector landlords had been slow to cooperate and called on them again not to pass costs on to leaseholders.
Brokenshire said: "In future, the government will ensure that those responsible for a building must demonstrate they have taken decisive action to reduce building safety risks and will be held to account.
"We agree that the system should be overseen by a more effective regulatory framework, including stronger powers to inspect high-rise buildings and sanctions to tackle irresponsible behaviour.
"We agree that there should be no buck passing between different parts of the industry and that everyone needs to work together to change the system."