Audit, Inspection and Safety

22.06.18

London council ‘negligent and in denial’ over tower blocks at risk of collapse

Two tower blocks in North London are at risk of collapse, with the area’s council announcing it wants to begin re-housing residents “immediately.”

The Tangmere and Northolt blocks as part of the Broadwater Farm estate in Haringey, Tottenham, will be evacuated by Haringey Borough Council after checks carried out showed blocks could fall if there was a major explosion or vehicle impact in the high-rises.

The Guardian revealed on Wednesday that the council wants to demolish the two blocks on the estate after safety checks declared residents were in danger. Nine other buildings on the 12-block estate also failed minor tests and the council has begun work to improve safety precautions.

The checks come after councils are assessing safety risks in tower blocks across the UK following the Grenfell Tower disaster last year.

Sam Webb, an architect and expert in the estate's system, told the Guardian that it was negligent of Haringey council for not noticing the problem sooner. “Everyone, including the government, has been in denial," he added. 

Broadwater Farm estate was built in the 1970s using the large panel system (LPS) construction method. Ronan Point, in Newham, partially collapsed in 1968 following a gas explosion in the tower block.

Gas supplier Cadent will switch off gas for the whole estate by the end of October this year to limit the safety risks. Tangmere residents will be forced to evacuate by the end of October. Despite the Northolt block having no piped gas supply, residents will start to be evacuated next year, with no deadline for re-housing given.

Jacob Secker of the Broadwater Farm residents’ association on Thursday said the council were “treating residents of these two blocks in a callous and incompetent manner” and as if they were “second class citizens,” the Guardian reported.

A cabinet meeting will commence on 26 June will assess how to progress with the re-housing of Tangmere residents.

Cabinet member for housing and estate renewal said:"We understand that residents on Broadwater Farm – particularly those in Tangmere and Northolt blocks – will have questions and concerns.

“We are committed to providing a safe, decent and affordable home for everyone and I want to assure all affected residents that we will carefully consider all of the issues, and that any decision we take will be with primary consideration for the safety, aspirations and rights of our tenants.” 

Cllr Ibrahim added that residents are the council's "absolute priority" and a decision on the long-term future of the blocks wil only be taken following proper consultation with residents.

Top image: Yui Mok via PA Archive/PA Images

 

Enjoying PSE? Subscribe here to receive our weekly news updates or click here to receive a copy of the magazine!

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

public sector executive tv

more videos >

latest public sector news

Essex council announces £1bn construction deal

22/03/2019Essex council announces £1bn construction deal

An Essex council has announced a £1bn contract in a joint venture to regenerate council sites and deliver new homes and commercial faciliti... more >
Council to pull out of government schools improvement body over rising costs and ‘major concerns’ over poor management

22/03/2019Council to pull out of government schools improvement body over rising costs and ‘major concerns’ over poor management

A Welsh council is to pull out of a government-run schools improvement scheme over concerns about how it is run and fears that the quadrupling of... more >
Councils' legal challenge against Buckinghamshire merger process rejected

22/03/2019Councils' legal challenge against Buckinghamshire merger process rejected

An application from three district councils for a judicial review of the merger plans to create a single unitary council for Buckinghamshire has ... more >

editor's comment

25/10/2017Take a moment to celebrate

Devolution, restructuring and widespread service reform: from a journalist’s perspective, it’s never been a more exciting time to report on the public sector. That’s why I could not be more thrilled to be taking over the reins at PSE at this key juncture. There could not be a feature that more perfectly encapsulates this... read more >

last word

The importance of openness after Grenfell

The importance of openness after Grenfell

Following the recent Grenfell Tower tragedy, Lord Porter, chairman of the LGA, argues that if the public are going to have faith in the safety testing process then everything must be out in the o... more > more last word articles >
Budget meeting descends into chaos as Manchester council raids reserves

11/03/2019Budget meeting descends into chaos as Manchester council raids reserves

Manchester City Council is to raid its reserves and raise council tax in a bid to make £15m worth of savings in a meeting that spiralled out of control and led to councillors “aggress... more >
‘Betrayed’ foster carers of Parsons Green bomber sue Surrey council

08/03/2019‘Betrayed’ foster carers of Parsons Green bomber sue Surrey council

The foster parents of the Parson Green bomber are suing Surrey County Council for negligence after the authority placed him in their home without telling them he had been “trained to kill b... more >

the raven's daily blog

Councils Can: LGA launches Spending Review campaign

18/03/2019Councils Can: LGA launches Spending Review campaign

Lord Porter, chairman of the Local Government Association, outlines his organisation’s campaign to make sure local government tops to government’s list for this year’s Spending Review. Our #CouncilsCan campaign to influence this year’s Spending Review is well underway and gathering momentum. The money local governm... more >
read more blog posts from 'the raven' >

comment

Camberley inspired: investment and regeneration

11/03/2019Camberley inspired: investment and regeneration

The decline of the Great British high street has been one of the greatest concerns for local councils in recent years, leading to some innovative... more >
Swindon's solar-powered recycling centre saves council cash

11/03/2019Swindon's solar-powered recycling centre saves council cash

Steve Cains, head of power solutions at Public Power Solutions, the wholly-owned subsidiary of Swindon Borough Council, describes the benefits of... more >
National Infrastructure Commission: Progressing the North

11/03/2019National Infrastructure Commission: Progressing the North

The National Infrastructure Commission’s (NIC) National Infrastructure Assessment was released in July 2018, making a variety of recommenda... more >
SARS II: Recovery made easy

11/03/2019SARS II: Recovery made easy

Paul Bentley, of the Crown Commercial Service (CCS), introduces us to the Spend Analysis Recovery Framework: a no win no fee means of carrying ou... more >

interviews

Digital innovation in the public sector: The future is now

17/12/2018Digital innovation in the public sector: The future is now

One of the public sector’s key technology partners has recently welcomed a new member to its team. Matt Spencer, O2’s head of public ... more >
Artificial intelligence: the devil is in the data

17/12/2018Artificial intelligence: the devil is in the data

It’s no secret that the public sector and its service providers need to invest in technology to help make better use of their resources. Bu... more >
New Dorset Councils CEO on the creation of a new unitary: ‘This is going to be the right decision for Dorset’

05/11/2018New Dorset Councils CEO on the creation of a new unitary: ‘This is going to be the right decision for Dorset’

The new chief executive of one of the new unitary authorities in Dorset has outlined his approach to culture and work with employees, arguing tha... more >
Keeping the momentum of the Northern Powerhouse

15/10/2018Keeping the momentum of the Northern Powerhouse

On 6 September, the biggest decision-makers of the north joined forces to celebrate and debate how to drive innovation and improvement through th... more >

public sector focus

View all News