Southend Borough Council’s cabinet has agreed to bring forward £2m of capital funding to allow South Essex Homes to complete planned fire safety works in tower blocks faster than planned.
A programme for South Essex Homes’ contractors to install new fire safety entrance doors and frames, along with communal doors and panels across all thirteen of the Borough’s council owned tower blocks has been underway since 2011, with the programme now nearing completion.
Ten blocks are fully completed, with contractors on site at the Chiltern town centre tower block.
It was planned to complete work on the Pennine and Quantock tower blocks, which do have fire doors installed, in 2018.
Speaking at the meeting, Cllr John Lamb, said: “In light of the devastating Grenfell flat fire last week, I am very pleased that we are able to bring forward £2m from the 2018/19 HRA future programme budget into the 2017/18 financial year.
“This will enable the on-going programme of fire safety installation works to be accelerated by South Essex Homes and finished earlier than planned and within this financial year.
“This not only makes financial sense because we already have contractors on site carrying out works, but it is also the right thing to do to ensure that our residents have the latest and highest specification fire safety equipment installed in their homes.”
South Essex Homes Executive Director, Mario Ambrose, added: “The safety and welfare of our residents has always been a very high priority for South Essex Homes, and we are pleased that we are able to complete the last stage of the works in our tower blocks, earlier than planned. Working in partnership with Essex Fire and Rescue Service, we are continuing to consult and reassure residents about fire safety.”
A more detailed update on general fire safety will be issued shortly.