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Govt. threatens developers with fines over ACM cladding

Communities secretary has written to 60 landlords and developers, including Lendlease to demand they replace ACM cladding or risk financial penalties

Communities secretary James Brokenshire has warned 60 landlords and developers, including Lendlease, Pemberstone, Paddington Development Corporation and GLA Land & Property that they risk fines or being banned from future government schemes if they refuse to replace aluminium composite material (ACM) cladding, or force leaseholders to pay for refurbishment.

Barratt Developments, Mace, Legal & General and Taylor Wimpey, have already agreed to cover the costs of the necessary replacement work, regardless of whether or not they still own the buildings.

This latest government statement comes after it was revealed that ACM cladding had only been removed from nine of out of 293 private blocks since the Grenfell Tower fire in June 2017. In addition, almost 200 blocks had still to inform the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government of their plans to remove the cladding.

Brokenshire said: “There is a moral imperative for private sector landlords to do the right thing and remove unsafe cladding quickly, and not leave leaseholders to cover the cost.

“A number of leading developers have stepped up to the mark and agreed to pay for work, and we urge others to follow their lead. If they don’t, we have not ruled anything out.

“I am also warning those who are not acting quickly enough to put in plans to remove dangerous cladding to take action now, or face enforcement action from their council.”