By Julia Gregory, Local Democracy Reporter
Frustrated campaigners who lost loved ones in the Grenfell Tower disaster have ramped up their campaign to get cladding off homes throughout the UK.
They are staging a waking watch – like those designed to alert people to fires – at the Ministry of Housing Communities and Local Government to keep the pressure on.
Campaigners say progress to remove cladding, funded by the government, is too slow, with thousands of people still living in dangerous conditions.
Grenfell survivor Joseph John said he did not want to see other families go through the hell he is still living through.
“I am frustrated and angry. I am still traumatised. Grenfell still affects me on a daily basis. We need to see some action,” he said.
He said the stress of living in a home with Grenfell-style cladding affects people badly.
“I don’t know how they are sleeping. I am sure they are on eggshells,” he said.
Graham French, a consultant at Russell-Cooke, which represents many of those affected by Grenfell, said: “Thousands of people are still living with dangerous cladding on their homes, many of which have already been identified for remediation. Those people must not be made to wait for years for their homes to be made safe.
“The Grenfell Inquiry’s Phase 1 report clearly found that the cause of spread of the fire was the use of combustible cladding and insulation materials in the external wall of the tower.
“Action must be taken, immediately, to ensure that these dangerous materials are removed from all buildings.
Campaigners want to see all dangerous cladding removed by June 2022 – the fifth anniversary of the fatal fire, and the government’s building fund to cover all buildings, regardless of height.
They want social housing providers to be included.
And they also want to see mental health support for those affected.
Pictured top: Grenfell Tower (Picture: PA)
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