Plymouth's thoughts and prayers are with the victims of the Grenfell House disaster in London. I have received a number of questions from worried local residents about the safety of our tower blocks in Plymouth. This is an update on what actions I am taking with your local councillors.
Since the disaster, together with Labour local councillors for Devonport ward (where Lynher House, Tamar House and Tavy House along with Marlborough House are located) we have:
- Spoken to residents associations, to keep them informed about what is happening and to reassure residents every steps to assure their safety are being taken.
- Spoken to Plymouth Community Homes, who run the tower blocks. PCH have started inspections of the tower blocks to ensure their safety.
- Written to the Devon and Somerset Fire Brigade, to ensure that Plymouth has adequate fire cover in the event of a fire in a tower block.
This week, Cllr Bill Stevens and I will be convening a meeting for the local residents associations to meet with the City Council and PCH to discuss their concerns. We will publish an update in due course.
In Parliament, I will be supporting efforts for a full investigation into the fire and how, in one of the country's richest boroughs, basic fire protections were not put in place. I want to ensure that the victims of the fire get justice. I will be supporting Emma Dent Coad, the new Kensington Labour MP, to get justice for her residents. I will also work to get answers for local residents in Plymouth about our tall buildings.
If you are worried or have a question please get in touch.
UPDATE: Since this post was put online I have been contacted by many people wanting me to write to the Prime Minister asking her to do more on fire safety and to include specific measures in the Queen's Speech. I have written to the PM and called for better fire regulations. I have also asked her to reverse cuts to the fire and rescue services across the country, including in Plymouth, and to ensure that local councils have the money they need to provide decent, safe and affordable housing.