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Brokenshire 'very concerned' at number of Grenfell survivors still in hotels

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As the first anniversary of the Grenfell fire approaches, there are still 43 households of survivors currently living in hotels, according to the housing and communities secretary.

James Brokenshire told Parliament yesterday that he was “very concerned” about that number, adding that the pace on rehousing survivors had been “too slow”.

Speaking three days after the fire last year, prime minister Theresa May said: “My government will do whatever it takes to help those affected, get justice and keep our people safe.”

Mr Brokenshire wrote on 6 June to the survivors still in emergency housing in a public letter now published on the government’s website.

In the letter, Mr Brokenshire said he had “stressed the importance” of prioritising the repair of their new homes in a letter to Phillip Bentley, the CEO of outsourcing firm Mitie which is carrying out the majority of works.

Mr Brokenshire told Parliament the government had spent “over £46m of national government funds” to help rehouse residents on the Lancaster West Estate, and deliver improvements to the area.

Mr Brokenshire said the government “will not rest until everyone is settled into new homes”.

On the issue of removing flammable cladding from the outside of buildings, Mr Brokenshire reiterated his intention “to ban the use of combustible materials on the external walls of high-rise residential buildings” subject to a consultation due to be published next week. The government expects private building owners to “not pass costs on to leaseholders”, he added.

A tribunal ruled in March that private leaseholders should be left to pay for the removal of any dangerous cladding, after a firm owned by multi-billionaire Vincent Tchenguiz brought a claim refusing responsibility.

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