In North Kensington and the surrounding areas, people will be dealing with the repercussions of the appalling Grenfell Tower fire for years to come.
Through our merger with the Notting Hill-based firm Alan Edwards & Co, we have a particular knowledge and understanding of the area as well as strong connections with local community organisations. Alan Edwards - himself practised in the area for some 40 years and other former Alan Edwards & Co partners and staff for decades. We were therefore involved from the outset, working with organisations, associations and charities through which we hoped to have the greatest impact. We have been careful, however, not to try and put ourselves in the spotlight. The issues are too important for that. But clients and others closely connected with the aftermath of the disaster, with whom we have been cooperating, will have an interest in knowing about the effort we have been making. We don't claim any special credit - community organisations, bereaved, survivors and residents groups have been able to do much more.
Any contribution made by any single organisation such as Russell-Cooke, can only ever be small when compared to the enormity of the situation faced by the community. .
But here are some of the things we have done so far:
- at the invitation of Shelter our specialist housing lawyers advised, pro bono, at legal clinics in the area organised by North Kensington Law Centre (NKLC), the Citizens Advice bureau and Shelter
- we provided financial support to NKLC to help them assist those affected and ensure they get access to justice and legal support. As well as the legal clinics NKLC have been helping residents gather the documents and paperwork they will require in order to advance any future claims
- via local community organisations we advised on a pro bono basis, on the public inquiry including (in conjunction with Andrew Arden QC) representation regarding the terms of reference
- via a legal clinic organised by NKLC we provided pro bono wills and probate advice to bereaved families to assist them in dealing with the deceased's estate so that in due course they can make a damages claim
- our charity lawyers have provided advice and support to trusted organisations within the community to coordinate the control and distribution of relief funds provided by the London Community Foundation
Work for individual clients
Given our long-standing presence in the area we are representing both pre-existing and new clients who are among those affected:
- we have been representing clients from Grenfell Tower and the immediate neighbourhood regarding their rights to temporary and permanent housing and many related issues
- we have provided advice in relation to injury claims with specific emphasis on psychological injuries and loss of family possessions
- we are acting for a number of survivors, bereaved and residents in relation to the ongoing inquiry
We have been providing assistance to individuals to help them choose the right representation. We don't charge for that. Sometimes we are the right firm but sometimes we may not be. Individuals and organisations are welcome to contact us to discuss their needs or worries about representation without charge.