More than two years after the Grenfell Tower fire, the first phase of the Grenfell Tower Inquiry report has been released- and it has significant implications for property owners and managers.
The first phase of the inquiry focused on the events of the night of the fire, while the second phase, which will start early next year, will cover the wider causes and issues. However, many of the recommendations from the first phase for both the London Fire Brigade (LFB) and the government also require property owners and managers.
Graham French, who has been working directly with more than 20 residents of, and around, Grenfell Tower and their families, appears in Property Week to discuss the significance of the report's findings in moving towards determining those responsible for the fire.
The report finds that the cladding on Grenfell Tower “promoted” the spread of fire, the purely decorative “crown” and defective fire doors contributed to the fire’s rapid spread; and, crucially, that there was a breach of the building regulations when GT was refurbished.
He states, "We all knew this but the fact that we now have a finding to that effect means we don't have to establish causation. Now we can identify which individuals, institutions and companies were responsible for this breach. This will open the way for criminal convictions".
He also notes that, "the Grenfell disaster should be a watershed in how fire safety is dealt with in the property sector".
Graham is a consultant in the property and housing litigation team, specialising in residential and commercial property disputes, landlord & tenant, housing, public law, and related contractual disputes. He covers all aspects of property and housing litigation including possession, forfeiture, breach of covenant, disrepair, trespass, rights of way, rent issues and financial disputes. He acts for landlords, tenants and tenant’s organisations.
He is also leading the team advising and representing some of those affected by the Grenfell Tower fire.