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Company behind Berkshire House refurbishment reassures residents after Grenfell Tower fire

Grace Witherden

Grace Witherden

Company behind Berkshire House refurbishment reassures residents after Grenfell Tower fire

The company behind the refurbishment of Berkshire House has moved to reassure residents following the tragic Grenfell Tower fire.

Concerns were raised about the cladding used for the Maidenhead tower block's facelift following Wednesday's fire in west London, which has left at least 30 people dead.

Berkshire House is being turned into luxury rental flats by Essential Living.

Twitter user Sian Martin said: “In light of the tragedy of Grenfell Towers, does anyone know what the cladding of Berkshire House is made of?”

Oli L-Gore said: “Qs should be asked about Essential Living cladding on outside after Grenfell Tower Fire.”

In response, Darryl Flay, chief executive of Essential Living, said:
“During the design phase and conversion of Berkshire House fire safety was, and remains, of paramount importance. The building goes above and beyond all building regulations and, once fully completed, it will undergo a test by the fire brigade before residents move in.

“Berkshire House’s cladding is totally different from aluminium composite material (ACM) and was specifically chosen for its improved design integrity and fire retardant qualities. 

"Together with an enhanced mist suppression system, alarms, LED lighting and other protection systems, I am happy to guarantee that Berkshire House is fully compliant with all current safety standards and that there is absolutely no cause for concern."

The building is scheduled to be fully completed in August.

Cllr Simon Dudley (Con, Riverside) and leader of the council said on Twitter: “I have asked for an expert analysis of Berkshire House and for that report to be taken to RBWM planning and housing overview and scrutiny. Scrutiny essential.”

He also said the flags at the Town Hall would be lowered to half mast to pay respect to those who lost their lives in the fire.

UPDATE 4.35pm:

Cllr Dudley said: "We are in discussion with Housing Associations in Windsor and Maidenhead. We are going to be inviting them and Essential Living to the Housing Overview and Scrutiny panel on July 12. 

"We will be asking them to provide analysis about the buildings. Cllr Kellaway, chairman of the panel has agreed to it."


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