Post-Grenfell cladding ban consultation launched in Wales

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Grenfell Tower remainsImage source, Getty Images
Image caption,
The Grenfell Tower fire in west London claimed the lives of 72 people

Public views are being invited on plans to ban inflammable cladding on high-rise buildings in Wales following the Grenfell Tower tragedy in west London.

Housing Minister Rebecca Evans said there was concern cladding may have been a factor in the spread of the June 2017 fire which left 72 people dead.

"We cannot accept a system which compromises the safety of the people of Wales," she said.

The eight-week consultation launched on Thursday runs until 13 September.

Some Welsh high-rise buildings failed tests carried out after the fire.

Image source, Google
Image caption,
Milton Court in Newport is one of the three tower blocks to have failed fire safety tests

They include blocks in Newport where cladding is to be replaced while tests in Swansea initially failed before cladding was later deemed to be safe.

"Since the tragic events at Grenfell Tower there has been much debate about external wall cladding systems and concerns expressed that combustible cladding is not explicitly banned by law," Ms Evans said.

"I have been clear that we will make radical and far-reaching reforms to the regulatory system following Dame Judith Hackitt's review.

"While we do not want to see regulation out of proportion to risk, we cannot accept a system which compromises the safety of the people of Wales.

"We have responded quickly to public concern with this consultation and I hope to hear the views of a wide range of individuals and organisations."

The consultation in Wales covers new buildings and those undergoing refurbishment.

The UK government is already consulting on a ban on using combustible materials for new high-rise buildings in England.

However, the Commons housing committee said on Wednesday this did not go far enough, and should include existing buildings and those under construction.

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