In answer to a written question from Shabana Mahmood MP, the Government admitted that only 5 of the 31 buildings with an application with the Building Safety Fund in the West Midlands have started the remediation of dangerous fire safety defects.
Many more buildings are in need of funding and remediation works in Birmingham but have not qualified for the Fund. Over 100 buildings in the West Midlands registered for the Building Safety Fund, but in many cases, developments cannot receive funds due to issues with securing Professional Indemnity Insurance, or because their building does not meet the strict requirements to be accepted.
Other developments are not able to start the work because they are only awarded a small portion of the funding needed to complete the works in full, leaving leaseholders to pick up the tab.
The statistics lay bare the Government’s lack of political will on the issue and highlight how many people are in desperate need of their cladding works to start.
Former Secretary of State at the then Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government, Robert Jenrick MP, recently indicated that the Treasury is simply not willing to provide additional funding, leaving leaseholders with bills running into the millions of pounds that they cannot afford.
Shabana Mahmood, MP for Birmingham Ladywood, has long been campaigning on the issue, given the significant number of buildings in her constituency affected by the cladding scandal.
Shabana Mahmood MP said:
“This Government is dragging its feet and choosing to leave leaseholders trapped, through no fault of their own, in flats littered with fire safety defects and flammable cladding.
“In the Budget last week, the Government had the opportunity to signal its support for leaseholders, but no new funding was announced for affected leaseholders.
“The sheer number of buildings that are still waiting for remediation works to start, four years on from Grenfell, shows that the Government isn’t serious about tackling the cladding scandal.
“I will keep fighting on a cross party basis for a better deal for leaseholders and to get them out of this nightmare.”
Notes to Editors
- You can find the answers to Shabana’s Parliamentary Questions here: https://questions-statements.parliament.uk/written-questions/detail/2021-10-15/56944
- Shabana has been relentless in fighting for better for innocent leaseholders, you can find details of her previous work here: https://www.shabanamahmood.org/category/housing/