Theresa May's £400m to rid fire-risk tower blocks of cladding

Inferno Grenfell Tower engulfed in flames during the inferno that killed 71 people PIC GETTY

But her decision not to advise a ban on combustible cladding or insulation for high-rise buildings drew immediate condemnation from a wide range of critics including the opposition Labour Party.

"I don't know of any systems containing combustible materials that have passed that test".

Dame Judith Hackitt's report, being published on Thursday morning, will criticise what she calls systematic flaws in how buildings are planned, built and managed which she believes are putting people's lives at risk.

It follows a wave of criticism after Dame Judith Hackitt released her report for reform of building regulations in the wake of the June 14 disaster that left 71 dead.

Her report mentioned that ignorance led a "race to the underside" in constructing security practises which prioritised cost-cutting over security.

Dame Judith said a ban would "not address the root causes" of the "broken system" of building regulations.

Nearly 300 other high-rise buildings were subsequently found to have unsafe cladding and the government said on Wednesday that it will provide £400m to replace it on 158 social housing buildings. "When we met Dame Judith, we looked her in the eye and we asked her - among other things - to ban risky cladding".

"I simply fail to see how it is deemed appropriate for any combustible material to be used on any tower block in this country".

Unthinkable and unacceptable’ Tottenham MP David Lammy who lost a friend in the blaze PIC PA
Unthinkable and unacceptable’ Tottenham MP David Lammy who lost a friend in the blaze PIC PA

"Why are we having to say this?"

Shadow housing secretary John Healey said it "beggars belief" that the report "continues to give a green light" to combustible materials on high-rise blocks.

Shahin Sadafi, chair of the Grenfell United survivors group, told Today it was "very disappointing" that the report appears not to include an outright ban on flammable cladding.

Dame Judith's refusal to call for a ban on combustible cladding and the desktop studies that are used to authorise cladding systems that have not been fire tested is being criticised.

She said: "My investigation has determined that there are people out there taking short cuts, cutting costs and not taking responsibility for building buildings that are safe to live in".

Lord Porter said the government should "act without delay" to introduce a temporary ban "until we have a regulatory and testing system which is fit for the 21st Century".

Last year, the government offered financial flexibilities to help local authorities with vital fire safety work.

Her review is aimed at making sure similar events do not happen in the future.

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