Why is 'Grenfell-style' cladding still on Devonport Tower blocks?

Cladding surrounding three tower blocks in Devonport failed a fire safety test back in June. Credit: ITV News Westcountry

Residents living in three tower blocks living in the Mount Wise area of Devonport in Plymouth say they are frustrated that "Grenfell-style" cladding still has not been removed from the buildings.

Plymouth Community Homes maintain Tavy, Lynher and Tamar House, and set out a timetable back in the summer, aiming to have scaffolding erected by September, the old cladding removed by the end of November and new cladding in place by the new year.

However, the housing association says the operation is turning out to be more complicated that first thought, and they will not be receiving additional government funding to help with replacing the cladding.

John Clark is the Chief Executive of Plymouth Community Homes:

Plymouth Community Homes still cannot give a definitive new target date from removing the cladding.

Stripping the buildings would be problematic without any replacement cladding, as the towers would no longer be wind or waterproof.

Several additional safety measures have been installed since June to help residents feel safer, including new heat and smoke detectors, fire-doors and fire wardens watching for any signs of ignition.

One of the blocks, Tamar House, was evacuated in October after a fire scare.

Tamar House was evacuated after a fire-scare back in June. Credit: Aidan Thompson

Plymouth Community homes estimate it will cost £14 million to re-clad the towers.

Some residents in the block say they now want to move out, due to concerns over fire safety.

One Plymouth City Councillor is also shocked that the government have not freed up money to re-clad the towers in Devonport.

Mark Coker, who represents the Devonport Ward, says it should be a priority for those in Westminster, with public safety at risk:

In a statement, the Department for Communities and Local Government told ITV Westcountry:

Public safety must come first, which is why following the Grenfell Tower fire, we have been working with local authorities and private residential landlords across the country to identify buildings that might be at risk and ensure action is taken to make them safe.

DCLG Spokesperson